Cytogenetic biomonitoring of oral mucosa cells from adults exposed to dental X-rays

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Ribeiro, Daniel Araki [UNIFESP]
Angelieri, Fernanda
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Purpose. Although it has been clearly demonstrated that X-rays play a key role in diagnosing medical and dental problems, this type of ionizing radiation is also able to induce noxious activities, such as genetic damage. the aim of the present study was to evaluate DNA damage (micronucleus) and cellular death in exfoliated buccal mucosa cells from healthy individuals (smokers and nonsmokers) following dental X-ray exposure.Material and methods. A total of 39 healthy people who had submitted to panoramic dental radiography were included in the study: 9 smokers and 30 nonsmokers.Results. the results indicated no significant statistically differences (P > 0.05) in micronucleated oral mucosa cells before and after dental X-ray exposure. On the other hand, X-ray exposure did increase other nuclear alterations closely related to cytotoxicity, such as karyorrhexis, pyknosis, and karyolysis. It seems that cigarette smoke did not affect X-ray outcomes induced in buccal cells.Conclusion. These data indicate that dental panoramic radiography may not induce chromosomal damage, but it is able to promote cytotoxicity. Because cellular death is considered a prime mechanism in nongenotoxic mechanisms of carcinogenesis, dental X-ray should be used only when necessary.
Radiation Medicine. New York: Springer, v. 26, n. 6, p. 325-330, 2008.