Yang, H., Anzenberg, V. and Held, K. D. The Time Dependence of Bystander Responses Induced by Iron-Ion Radiation in Normal Human Skin Fibroblasts. Radiat. Res. 168, 292–298 (2007).
Although bystander effects have been shown for some high-LET radiations, few studies have been done on bystander effects induced by heavy-ion radiation. In this study, using a Transwell insert co-culture system, we have demonstrated that irradiation with 1 GeV/nucleon iron ions can induce medium-mediated bystander effects in normal AG01522 human fibroblasts. When irradiated and unirradiated bystander cells were combined in shared medium immediately after irradiation, a two- to threefold increase in the percentage of bystander cells with γ-H2AX foci occurred as early as 1 h after irradiation and lasted at least 24 h. There was a twofold increase in the formation of micronuclei in bystander cells when they were co-cultured with irradiated cells immediately or 1 or 3 h after irradiation, but there was no bystander effect when the cells were co-cultured 6 h or later after irradiation. In addition, bystander micronucleus formation was observed even when the bystander cells were co-cultured with irradiated cells for only 1 h. This indicates that the crucial signaling to bystander cells from irradiated cells occurs shortly after irradiation. Moreover, both γ-H2AX focus formation and micronucleus formation in bystander cells were inhibited by the ROS scavengers SOD or catalase or the NO scavenger PTIO. This suggests that ROS and NO play important roles in the initiation of bystander effects. The results with iron ions were similar to those with X rays, suggesting that the bystander responses in this system are independent of LET.