Radiation-induced non-targeted effects: some open questions
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The existence of non-targeted effects (NTEs) of radiation (genomic instability and bystander effects) has been generally accepted for >20 y; however, there is research, which was largely ignored going back to 1915 reporting these effects. Despite today's general acceptance of the phenomenon of NTE, there is little agreement about the mechanisms involved and the implications in radiation biology and radiation protection. The aim of this review was to consider some of the odd data, which have been published in the field with a view to obtaining insights or stimulating new ways of thinking about this field. By highlighting some key challenges and controversies, concerning the mechanisms and more importantly, the reason these effects exist, current ideas about the wider implications of NTEs in evolution and biology are also discussed.
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