Study of antioxidative effects and anti-inflammatory effects in mice due to low-dose X-irradiation or radon inhalation

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Low-dose irradiation induces various stimulating effects, especially activation of the biological defense system including antioxidative and immune functions. Oxidative stress induced by reactive oxygen species (ROS) can cause cell damage and death and can induce many types of diseases. This paper reviews new insights into inhibition of ROS-related diseases with low-dose irradiation or radon inhalation. X-irradiation (0.5 Gy) before or after carbon tetrachloride (CCl4) treatment inhibits hepatopathy in mice. X-irradiation (0.5 Gy) before ischemia-reperfusion injury or cold-induced brain injury also inhibits edema. These findings suggest that low-dose X-irradiation has antioxidative effects due to blocking the damage induced by free radicals or ROS. Moreover, radon inhalation increases superoxide dismutase activity in many organs and inhibits CCl4-induced hepatic and renal damage and streptozotocin-induced type I diabetes. These findings suggest that radon inhalation also has antioxidative effects. This antioxidative effect against CCl4-induced hepatopathy is comparable to treatment with ascorbic acid (vitamin C) at a dose of 500 mg/kg weight, or α-tocopherol (vitamin E) treatment at a dose of 300 mg/kg weight, and is due to activation of antioxidative functions. In addition, radon inhalation inhibits carrageenan-induced inflammatory paw edema, suggesting that radon inhalation has anti-inflammatory effects. Furthermore, radon inhalation inhibits formalin-induced inflammatory pain and chronic constriction injury-induced neuropathic pain, suggesting that radon inhalation relieves pain. Thus, low-dose irradiation very likely activates the defense systems in the body, and therefore, contributes to preventing or reducing ROS-related injuries, which are thought to involve peroxidation.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)587-596
Number of pages10
JournalJournal of radiation research
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - Jul 1 2013


  • anti-inflammatory effect
  • antioxidative effect
  • low-dose irradiation
  • pain relief
  • radon inhalation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Radiation
  • Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging
  • Health, Toxicology and Mutagenesis


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