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My research group is focused on the ‘non-targeted effects’ of radiation including Genomic Instability (GI) and Bystander Effects (BE) and has had extensive conceptual impact leading to reconsideration of the recommended dose limits permissible in both clinical and environmental contexts.
Risk from low dose ionizing radiation is also of major societal concern, as all living things, including humans are exposed continuously to environmental background radiation as well as artificial sources such as medical equipment for diagnostic and therapeutic purposes. Of particular concern is variability between individual damage and response to radiation (targeted and non-targeted) due to their differing genetic make-up which has implications for environmental risk assessment and therapeutic design. For risk assessment, a pool of knowledge is always needed to make a societal impact (change in radiation protection regulation or practise in this case).
Our impact can be summarised in the following areas:
1. Increasing biological understanding leading to better practices with applications of radiation in a biological setting such as:
a. Radiotherapy and radiodiagnostics
b. Occupational workers
c. Space exploration
2. Developing biomarkers for radiation protection and radiotherapy /oncology
a. Possible translation into a public health setting
It is our aim to build on our current research in these areas that can eventually be translated into clinic and everyday life.