A Nonhuman Primate Model of the Hematopoietic Acute Radiation Syndrome Plus Medical Management
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AbstractThe development of medical countermeasures against the hematopoietic sub-syndrome of the acute radiation syndrome requires well characterized and validated animal models. The model must define the radiation dose- and time-dependent relationships for mortality and major signs of morbidity to include other organ damage that may contribute to the morbidity and mortality. Herein, we define these parameters for the nonhuman primate exposed to total-body radiation and administered medical management. A blinded, randomized study (n=48 rhesus macaques) determined the lethal dose response relationship using bilateral, 6 MV linear accelerator photon radiation to doses in the range of 7.20 to 8.90Gy at 0.80Gy minute−1. Following irradiation animals were monitored for complete blood counts, body weight, temperature, diarrhea, and hydration status for 60 days. Animals were administered medical management consisting of intravenous fluids, prophylactic antibiotics, blood transfusions, anti-diarrheals, analgesics and nutrition. The primary endpoint was survival at 60 days post irradiation; secondary endpoints included hematopoietic-related parameters, number of transfusions, incidence of documented infection, febrile neutropenia, severity of diarrhea, mean survival time of decedents and tissue histology. The study defined an LD30/60 of 7.06Gy, LD50/60 of 7.52Gy, and an LD70/60 of 7.99Gy with a relatively steep slope of 1.13 probits per linear dose. This study establishes a rhesus macaque model of the hematopoietic acute radiation syndrome and shows the marked effect of medical management on increased survival and overall mean survival time for decedents. Furthermore, following a nuclear terrorist event, medical management may be the only treatment administered at its optimal schedule.