Accumulation of radium in ferruginous protein bodies formed in lung tissue: Association of resulting radiation hotspots with malignant mesothelioma and other malignancies

Eizou Nakamura, Akio Makishima, Kyoko Hagino, Kazunori Okabe

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

13 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

While exposure to fibers and particles has been proposed to be associated with several different lung malignancies including mesothelioma, the mechanism for the carcinogenesis is not fully understood. Along with mineralogical observation, we have analyzed forty-four major and trace elements in extracted asbestos bodies (fibers and proteins attached to them) with coexisting fiber-free ferruginous protein bodies from extirpative lungs of individuals with malignant mesothelioma. These observations together with patients' characteristics suggest that inhaled iron-rich asbestos fibers and dust particles, and excess iron deposited by continuous cigarette smoking would induce ferruginous protein body formation resulting in ferritin aggregates in lung tissue. Chemical analysis of ferruginous protein bodies extracted from lung tissues reveals anomalously high concentrations of radioactive radium, reaching millions of times higher concentration than that of seawater. Continuous and prolonged internal exposure to hotspot ionizing radiation from radium and its daughter nuclides could cause strong and frequent DNA damage in lung tissue, initiate different types of tumour cells, including malignant mesothelioma cells, and may cause cancers.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)229-239
Number of pages11
JournalProceedings of the Japan Academy Series B: Physical and Biological Sciences
Volume85
Issue number7
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2009

Fingerprint

mesothelioma
radium
Radium
protein bodies
lungs
Radiation
proteins
Lung
asbestos
radiation
fibers
Asbestos
Neoplasms
Proteins
Iron
iron
nuclides
smoking (habit)
causes
Mesothelioma

Keywords

  • Asbestos
  • Cancer
  • Ferruginous body
  • Hotspot radiation
  • Malignant mesothelioma
  • Radium

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General

Cite this

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AU - Hagino, Kyoko

AU - Okabe, Kazunori

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AB - While exposure to fibers and particles has been proposed to be associated with several different lung malignancies including mesothelioma, the mechanism for the carcinogenesis is not fully understood. Along with mineralogical observation, we have analyzed forty-four major and trace elements in extracted asbestos bodies (fibers and proteins attached to them) with coexisting fiber-free ferruginous protein bodies from extirpative lungs of individuals with malignant mesothelioma. These observations together with patients' characteristics suggest that inhaled iron-rich asbestos fibers and dust particles, and excess iron deposited by continuous cigarette smoking would induce ferruginous protein body formation resulting in ferritin aggregates in lung tissue. Chemical analysis of ferruginous protein bodies extracted from lung tissues reveals anomalously high concentrations of radioactive radium, reaching millions of times higher concentration than that of seawater. Continuous and prolonged internal exposure to hotspot ionizing radiation from radium and its daughter nuclides could cause strong and frequent DNA damage in lung tissue, initiate different types of tumour cells, including malignant mesothelioma cells, and may cause cancers.

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