Biological effects of Fukushima

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Biological effects of Fukushima

Post by brehwens » 14 May 2015, 06:51

As this per definiton is a quite "tech"-oriented forum, I thought it would be interesting to focus on the recieving end of the radiation we investigate. As a radiation biologist spending the last year in a radioecology group, I have been doing some reading on the effects of fallout on the biota and therefore thought it interesting to share some of the more "high profile" reports here.

There are many studies investigating where the fallout went, how it is transported, how it behaves in sea,soil, sediment etc, but still relatively few studies that actually deal with potential biological effects of the contamination.

One study that recieved quite alot of attention is the one I link to below, where a Japaneese group studied abnormalities in a butterfly species from contaminated areas. They also reproduce the observed abnormalities by feeding the larvae contaminated leaves, or by external irradiation in the lab.

The study is open access and available free: ... 00570.html

The study is not without controverse. Some points of critique is (as with most studies where biological effects in the environment is concerned) inadequate dosimetry, and the fact that insect cells in general are considered radioresistant.

There has been some published criticism from other scientists, as well as published "defenses" of this work (both from this group, and other scientists). For me, I can appreciate both sides of this debate but I must say I have not seen a study where no effect is observed undergoing the same level of scrutiny.

Apart from this study, there are a few others suggesting some effects but the dosimetry in these studies are either too shaky, or are simply of poor study design.
Karl Brehwens
Eskilstuna, Sweden.

Setup: 5 cm lead castle, 2mm copper lining. Gamma Spectacular Pro 2002, Sound Blaster Live! 5.1,
Primary detector: Scionix refurbished 2x2" NaI(Tl) well detector, 7.5% @ 662 keV

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Joined: 01 May 2015, 13:46

Re: Biological effects of Fukushima

Post by Greg » 31 Jul 2015, 12:48

Thanks, Karl
However, According to "Uranium-Twisting The Dragons Tail" (Public TV Doc) more people have been harmed by fear of radiation than all the accidents and Bombs combined.

I think they failed to read the U.S. Gov. Reports on effects of test fall out on the Midwest US, DU in Iraq, latest BEIR'S(sp), and so much more.
I fear the country of Japan is once more a study on the effects of fall out.

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