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Publication Date

Spring 2012

Degree Type

Thesis - Campus Access Only

Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)


Biological Sciences


Sabine Rech

Subject Areas

Biology; Molecular biology


Radiation is present all around us, whether it is natural or man-made. Depending upon the type, intensity and duration, radiation exposure can pose a serious threat to an individual's survival. A number of research studies have been conducted to investigate various synthetic and natural compounds for their radioprotective properties. Curcumin, a natural polyphenol, has been extensively studied for its free radical-scavenging properties. In this study, we evaluated the radioprotective effects of 10 µM curcumin on 2 Gy gamma-irradiated Chinese hamster ovary cells. Survival curves were used to analyze CHO cell survival at different doses of gamma radiation, with and without curcumin pretreatment. The resulting data indicated a higher surviving fraction for curcumin-pretreated cells compared to untreated cells. Cell survival was estimated using a colony-forming assay. The assay showed that 10 µM curcumin pretreatment resulted in a greater number of colonies formed by CHO cells after 2 Gy irradiation. Furthermore, it was also observed that postirradiation incubation of CHO cells irradiated in the presence of 10 µM curcumin at 37oC resulted in decreased cell survival.