A REVIEW OF LABORATORY ANIMAL EXPERIMENTS RELATED TO THE RADIOBIOLOGY OF TRITIUM. Page: 8 of 22
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_DE 2 Another example of the treatment of this data, on.:the,.next slide, shows
the logarithm of water loss per day to be a reasonably linear function
of the logarithm of body weight--the kangaroo rat, again, falling outside
the pale. Having shown some of Chet's data, I would now like to show some
of mine and then we can forget about slides.
SLIDE 3 The next slide shows a typical retention curve for tritium in the
body water of rats. For perhaps 40 days following a single injection
of tritium oxide we see this exponential decline in activity over a 1000-
fold concentration .range. This corresponds to the approximately 3-day
half-time for body water turnover in the rat. A small fraction of tritium,
however, is retained with a much longer half-time. This is presumably
tritium released to body water from organic compounds in which it was
incorporated. This might be of special hazard concern, because it is
retained much longer than body water tritium.
SLIDE 4 The next slide shows data from an old experiment .of mine with
John Ballou (11). Defined by the solid points, we see the same kind of
body water curve as in the previous slide, except these rats were exposed
chronically, for 6 months and the influence of organically bound tritium
is more apparent,, the curve breaking after less than a hundred-fold loss
of body water activity. We measured the tritium level in the hydrogen
from the organic matter of these rats--the open circles--and, you see,
there was about 20% equilibration with body water hydrogen. That is, the
specific activity of organic hydrogen was 20% of that of body water hydrogen.
In some organs, e.g., brain, this was as high as nearly 40%, and in fats,
it was less than 10%. That less than 100% equilibration occurred was,
-of course, reasonable, since not all organic hydrogen comes from drinking
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Thompson, R. C. A REVIEW OF LABORATORY ANIMAL EXPERIMENTS RELATED TO THE RADIOBIOLOGY OF TRITIUM., report, January 1, 1971; Richland, Washington. (https://digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc1030877/m1/8/: accessed May 20, 2019), University of North Texas Libraries, Digital Library, https://digital.library.unt.edu; crediting UNT Libraries Government Documents Department.