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Caesium dosing reduces uptake of radiocaesium by sheep

Oughton, D.H., Day, J.P., Howard, B.J., Beresford, N.A., Lamb, C.S., Mayes, R.W., Preston, T., and East, B.W. (1991) Caesium dosing reduces uptake of radiocaesium by sheep. Journal of Environmental Radioactivity, 14 (2). pp. 105-121. ISSN 0265-931X (doi:10.1016/0265-931X(91)90071-M)

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Abstract

In sheep grazing pasture contaminated by radiocaesium, administration of stable caesium was found to inhibit the uptake of radiocaesium. Eight lambs feeding on a contaminated pasture received an oral dose of 500 mg CsCl and after 6 days had a radiocaesium load 17% lower than that of a control group on the same pasture. The rate of radiocaesium excretion from 4 lambs, in metabolism cages and fed uncontaminated grass, was unaffected by CsCl dosing in comparison with controls. Thus. caesium dosing appeared to inhibit uptake but did not alter rates of caesium loss by normal processes of metabolism. Measurements of stable and radioactive caesium excretion rates were interpreted using a compartment model, based on the hypothesis of two major caesium reservoirs within the sheep, with derived biological half-lives approximately 4 and 25 days, and capacities 20 and 80% of total, respectively. Caesium dosing appeared to saturate the latter reservoir and consequently inhibit further uptake. If a practicable method of application could be achieved, caesium dosing could be useful in the management of sheep and other grazing animals on radiocaesium-contaminated pasture and could find application to radiological protection in humans.

Item Type:Article
Status:Published
Refereed:Yes
Glasgow Author(s):Preston, Prof Thomas and Day, Dr Jonathan
Authors: Oughton, D.H., Day, J.P., Howard, B.J., Beresford, N.A., Lamb, C.S., Mayes, R.W., Preston, T., and East, B.W.
College/School:College of Medical Veterinary and Life Sciences > Institute of Cardiovascular and Medical Sciences
College of Science and Engineering > Scottish Universities Environmental Research Centre
Journal Name:Journal of Environmental Radioactivity
ISSN:0265-931X
Published Online:10 April 2003

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