Web edition: November 29, 2012
If human health were a comic book, radiation would be a villain — and vitamins would be good guys. But in a recent study on laboratory mice, scientists got some topsy-turvy results. Low doses of radiation actually improved the health of animals born with a gene that can make them sick. And normally beneficial vitamins such as C and E undermined radiation’s benefits.
“Nobody wants to think that low-dose radiation could be advantageous and the stuff you put in your vitamin pill would be bad,” said Randy Jirtle of the University of Wisconsin–Madison. This is why Jirtle, who led the new study, was initially not excited about his new findings.
T. Hesman Saey. A little radiation is good for mice. Science News Online, November 6, 2012. [Go to]