Radiation-Induced Cancer from Low-Dose Exposure:
An Independent Analysis
First Edition, 1990, by John W. Gofman, M.D., Ph.D.
$29.95. Release Date: September, 1990. 480 pages, softcover, 8.5x11 inches.
Includes 113 pages of Tables and Figures. References, Glossary, Index.
Library of Congress Catalog Card Number 89-62431. ISBN 0-932682-89-8.
Ionizing Radiation / Low-Dose Effects / Fractionated (Slow) Delivery / Threshold Dose / Hormesis
A Book You'll Want to Read . . .
No Matter Where You Stand.
Checkable, Verifiable Conclusions.
If you find it boring or maddening when authors present you with inscrutable conclusions out of a "black box," you will appreciate this book.
Unlike most works in this field, this book always presents the raw data and shows step-by-step how the author's conclusions emerge from the evidence. All findings can be checked, and readers are never asked to accept anything on faith. Assumptions are clearly identified.
When the author's findings differ with "conventional wisdom" -- and they do differ -- readers will know exactly why, and can evaluate the difference for themselves.
Differences with the Radiation Committees.
The author differs on key matters with the BEIR-5 Report of 1990 and the UNSCEAR Report of 1988. Those reports are critiqued in this book.
Among the differences thoroughly examined:
- Magnitude of cancer-risk at low doses.
- Effect of dose-fractionation on cancer-risk.
- The shape of the dose-response.
- Claims that human evidence of radiation-induced cancer is absent at low doses and dose-rates.
- The possibility that a safe dose or dose-rate may exist for cancer-induction.
"Internals" of the Key A-Bomb Study.
As you know, the radiation committees rely heavily on the A-Bomb Study to produce their risk-estimates. Gofman does too.
Have you ever seen the A-Bomb Study data for yourself? Gofman shows you the raw data, in both "old" and "new" dosimetries, and works with these data with no steps hidden from your scrutiny.
Radiologists are reminded that virtually all sources agree that cancer-risk from diagnostic medical X-rays is about twice as high as from A-bomb radiation, per red (centi-gray, or cGy).
What Is the Lowest Conceivable Dose?
The least possible dose with respect to radiogenic cancer is one primary ionization track traversing a cell-nucleus. No track in a nucleus means no dose in that nucleus.
Gofman shows you step-by-step that, for typical diagnostic X-rays, nuclei receive an average of only one track when tissue-dose is 0.75 red (cGy). Higher-energy radiations are analysed also.
Has Gofman Disproven the Safe Hypothesis?
Decide for yourself. In this book, Gofman combines track-analysis (see number 8, below) with nine separate epidemiological studies from the mainstream literature to show that human evidence already exists for radiation-induction of cancer by minimal doses and dose-rates.
- What about low-dose studies (especially natural background or "Denver-type" studies) in which excess cancer is absent? What about the studies cited by proponents of the hypothesis that a little radiation might be good for health (hormetic)? Such studies are carefully examined in this book.
- What about the hypotheses that, below a threshold dose or dose-rate, the body's remarkable DNA-repair and immune responses prevent any radiation-induced cancer? The author examines these concepts too.
Dose-Fractionation and Cancer-Risk.
It is widely known that fractionation protects against acute radiation sickness. Does fractionation of a low dose reduce cancer-risk? Gofman makes a case that it does not. Decide for yourself.
Also, he examines two studies (Howe 1984 fluoroscopy, Holm 1988 radio-iodine) cited by UNSCEAR 1988 as important human evidence supporting reduced cancer-risk from fractionation. Gofman argues that one study is misinterpreted, and the other fatally flawed. What will you think?
Tiny Doses to Vast Numbers of People.
- How clean is clean enough, when a radioactive site is decontaminated?
- Why do predictions of Chernobyl-induced cancer-deaths vary from a few hundred to 475,000? (The disparity does not arise from differences in dose-estimates.)
- How many radiation-induced cancers must be expected from policies which propose population doses of an extra annual 10 or 100 millirems?
Gofman's estimates are 6 to 30 times higher than the new estimates from BEIR-5 and UNSCEAR 1988. You can evaluate his estimates for yourself.
The Most Important Single Carcinogen?
The author concludes that low-dose ionizing radiation - including the background doses - may be the most important single carcinogen to which large numbers of humans are actually exposed. You can evaluate the conclusion for yourself -- because this book shows exactly how he reaches it.
Radiation-Induced Cancer from Low-Dose
Exposure: An Independent Analysis.
First edition, 1990, by John W. Gofman, M.D., Ph.D. $29.95.
Library of Congress 89-62431. ISBN 0-932682-89-8.
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John W. Gofman, M.D. (internal medicine), Ph.D. (nuclear / physical chemistry).
- Professor Emeritus, Dept. of Molecular and Cell Biology, Donner Lab, University of California, Berkeley, CA 94720. Lecturer in Medicine, Department of Medicine, University of California Medical Center, San Francisco.
- Co-discovered uranium-233; proved its fissionability; Manhatten Project plutonium separation.
- Demonstrated the existence of low-density lipoprdeins (LDL), very low-density lipoproteins (VLDL), and high-density lipoproteins (HDL). His work on their chemistry and health consequences included the first prospective studies demonstrating that high LDL levels represent a risk-factor for coronary heart disease (1956) and that low HDL levels represent a risk-factor for coronary heart disease (1966). Lyman Duff Award of the American Heart Association, 1965; Stouffer Prize (shared) 1972; selection in 1974 by the American College of Cardiology as one of the twenty-five leading researchers in heart disease of the past quarter-century.
- Founder (1963) and first director of the Biomedical Research Division of the Livermore National Laboratory, with the assignment from the Atomic Energy Commission of evaluating the health effects of ionizing radiation on humans.
- Independent analyst of radiation health-effects since 1973.
- Author of Radiation and Human Health (1981), and X-Rays: Health Effects of Common Exams (1985) with Egan O'Connor.
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