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J Med Case Rep, 10, 203
2016

Acute promyelocytic leukemia with the translocation t(15;17)(q22;q21) associated with t(1;2)(q42~43;q11.2~12): a case report.

Wafa, Abdulsamad, Moassass, Faten, Liehr, Thomas, Al-Ablog, Ayman, Al-Achkar, Walid

Acute promyelocytic leukemia is characterized by a typical reciprocal translocation t(15;17)(q22;q21). Additional chromosomal abnormalities are reported in only 23-43 \% of cases of acute promyelocytic leukemia.Here we report the case of a 46-year-old Syrian Alawis woman with acute promyelocytic leukemia with the typical t(15;17) translocation, but with a second clone presenting a t(1;2)(q42~43;q11.2~12) translocation as an additional abnormality. To the best of our knowledge, an association between these chromosomal abnormalities has not previously been described in the literature. Our patient started treatment with all-trans retinoic acid 10 days after diagnosis but died the same day of treatment initiation due to hemolysis, intracranial hemorrhage, thrombocytopenia, and disseminated intravascular coagulation.The here reported combination of aberrations in a case of acute promyelocytic leukemia seems to indicate an adverse prognosis, and possibly shows that all-trans retinoic acid treatment may be contraindicated in such cases.

Digital object identifier (DOI): 10.1186/s13256-016-0982-8

Journal of applied toxicology : JAT
2016

Genotoxic risk of ethyl-paraben could be related to telomere shortening.

Finot, F, Kaddour, A, Morat, L, Mouche, I, Zaguia, N, Cuceu, C, Souverville, D, Négrault, S, Cariou, O, Essahli, A, Prigent, N, Saul, J, Paillard, F, Heidingsfelder, L, Lafouge, P, Al Jawhari, M, Hempel, W M, El May, M, Colicchio, B, Dieterlen, A, Jeandidier, E, Sabatier, L, Clements, J, M'Kacher, R

The ability of parabens to promote the appearance of multiple cancer hallmarks in breast epithelium cells provides grounds for regulatory review of the implication of the presence of parabens in human breast tissue. It is well documented that telomere dysfunction plays a significant role in the initiation of genomic instability during carcinogenesis in human breast cancer. In the present study, we evaluated the genotoxic effect of ethyl 4-hydroxybenzoate (ethyl-paraben), with and without metabolic activation (S9), in studies following OECD guidelines. We observed a significant increase in genotoxic damage using the Mouse Lymphoma Assay and in vitro micronucleus (MN) tests in the L5178Y cell line in the presence of S9 only after a short exposure. A high frequency of MN was observed in the TK6 cells after a short exposure (3 h) in the presence of S9 and a long exposure (26 h) without S9. We found significant increases in the MN frequency and induced chromosomal aberrations in the lymphocytes of only one donor after ethyl-paraben exposure in the presence of S9 after a short exposure. Cytogenetic characterization of the paraben-treated cells demonstrated telomere shortening associated with telomere loss and telomere deletions in L5178Y and TK6 cells and lymphocytes of the paraben sensitive-donor. In a control cohort of 68 human lymphocytes, telomere length and telomere aberrations were age-dependent and showed high inter-individual variation. This study is the first to link telomere shortening and the genotoxic effect of ethyl paraben in the presence of S9 and raises the possibility that telomere shortening may be a proxy for underlying inter-individual sensitivity to ethyl-paraben. Copyright © 2016 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

Digital object identifier (DOI): 10.1002/jat.3425

Mutat Res
June, 2013

Persisting ring chromosomes detected by mFISH in lymphocytes of acancer patient-A case report.

Sabine Schmitz, Michael Pinkawa, Michael J. Eble, Ralf Kriehuber

We report the case of an 84 years old prostate cancer patient with severe side effects after radiotherapy in 2006. He was cytogenetically analysed in 2009 and in 2012 in a comparative study for individual radiosensitivity of prostate cancer patients. No other patient had clonal aberrations, but this patient showed ring chromosomes in the range of 21-25\% of lymphocytes. He received 5 cycles of 5-fluorouracil/folic acid for chemotherapy of sigmoid colon carcinoma in 2003, three years before radiotherapy of prostate cancer. Blood samples were irradiated ex vivo with Cs-137 {\~a}-rays (0.7Gy/min) in the G0-phase of the cell cycle. 100 FISH painted metaphases were analysed for the control and the irradiated samples each. Multicolour in situ hybridisation techniques like mFISH and mBand as well as MYC locus, telomere and centromere painting probes were used to characterise ring metaphases. Metaphase search and autocapture was performed with a Zeiss Axioplan 2 imaging microscope followed by scoring and image analysis using Metafer 4/ISIS software (MetaSystems). In 2009 chromosome 8 rings were found in about 25\% of lymphocytes. Rings were stable over time and increased to about 30\% until 2012. The ring chromosome 8 always lacked telomere signals and a small amount of rings displayed up to four centromere signals. In aberrant metaphases 8pter and 8qter were either translocated or deleted. Further analyses revealed that the breakpoint at the p arm is localised at 8p21.2-22. The breakpoint at the q arm turned out to be distal from the MYC locus at 8q23-24. We hypothesise that the ring chromosome 8 has been developed during the 5 FU/folic acid treatments in 2003. The long term persistence might be due to clonal expansion of a damaged but viable hematopoietic stem cell giving rise to cycling progenitor cells that permit cell survival and proliferation.

Blood, 118(26), 6760--6768
December, 2011

Impact of additional cytogenetic aberrations at diagnosis on prognosisof CML: long-term observation of 1151 patients from the randomizedCML Study IV.

Alice Fabarius, Armin Leitner, Andreas Hochhaus, Martin C M{\"u}ller, Benjamin Hanfstein, Claudia Haferlach, Gudrun G{\"o}hring, Brigitte Schlegelberger, Martine Jotterand, Andreas Reiter, Susanne Jung-Munkwitz, Ulrike Proetel, Juliana Schwaab, Wolf-Karsten Hofmann, J{\"o}rg Schubert, Hermann Einsele, Anthony D Ho, Christiane Falge, Lothar Kanz, Andreas Neubauer, Michael Kneba, Frank Stegelmann, Michael Pfreundschuh, Cornelius F Waller, Karsten Spiekermann, Gabriela M Baerlocher, Michael Lauseker, Markus Pfirrmann, Joerg Hasford, Susanne Saussele, R{\"u}diger Hehlmann, f{\"u}r Klinische Krebsforschung (SAKK), Schweizerische Arbeitsg, the German CML Study Group,

The prognostic relevance of additional cytogenetic findings at diagnosis of chronic myeloid leukemia (CML) is unclear. The impact of additional cytogenetic findings at diagnosis on time to complete cytogenetic (CCR) and major molecular remission (MMR) and progression-free (PFS) and overall survival (OS) was analyzed using data from 1151 Philadelphia chromosome-positive (Ph(+)) CML patients randomized to the German CML Study IV. At diagnosis, 1003 of 1151 patients (87\%) had standard t(9;22)(q34;q11) only, 69 patients (6.0\%) had variant t(v;22), and 79 (6.9\%) additional cytogenetic aberrations (ACAs). Of these, 38 patients (3.3\%) lacked the Y chromosome (-Y) and 41 patients (3.6\%) had ACAs except -Y; 16 of these (1.4\%) were major route (second Philadelphia [Ph] chromosome, trisomy 8, isochromosome 17q, or trisomy 19) and 25 minor route (all other) ACAs. After a median observation time of 5.3 years for patients with t(9;22), t(v;22), -Y, minor- and major-route ACAs, the 5-year PFS was 90\%, 81\%, 88\%, 96\%, and 50\%, and the 5-year OS was 92\%, 87\%, 91\%, 96\%, and 53\%, respectively. In patients with major-route ACAs, the times to CCR and MMR were longer and PFS and OS were shorter (P

Mol Cytogenet, 4, 16
2011

Biclonal myelodysplastic syndrome involving six chromosomes and monoallelicloss of RB1 - A rare case.

Walid Al-Achkar, Abdulsamad Wafa, Elisabeth Klein, Abdulmunim Aljapawe

ABSTRACT:Myelodysplastic syndrome (MDS) represents a group of clonal hematological disorders characterized by progressive cytopenia, and reflects to defects in erythroid, myeloid and megakaryocytic maturation. MDS is more frequently observed in older aged patients with cytogenetic abnormalities like monosomy of chromosome(s) 5 and/or 7. In 50\% of de novo MDS cases, chromosomal aberrations are found and rearrangements involving the retinoblastoma (RB1) gene in 13q14 are found.Here, we are presenting a case report of a rare biclonal MDS with a karyotype of 45, XY,-4, der(6)t(4;6)(p15.1;p21.3), der(8)t(4;8)(q31.2;q22), t(13;16)(q21.3;p11.2)11/45, XY, der(7)t(7;13)(p22.2~22.3;q21.3),-13 9. The patient was diagnosed according to WHO classification as refractory anemia with excess of blasts (RAEB-II).Immunophenotyping was positive for CD11b, CD11c, CD10, CD13, CD15, CD16 and CD33.We report, a novel and cytogenetically rare case of a biclonal MDS with complex chromosomal aberrations and deletion of RB1-gene in both clones. These findings are associated with a poor prognosis as the patient died 3 months after diagnosis.

Methods Mol Biol, 730, 203--218
2011

The use of M-FISH and M-BAND to define chromosome abnormalities.

Ruth N. Mackinnon, Ilse Chudoba

Multicolour fluorescence in situ hybridisation (M-FISH) and multicolour banding (M-BAND) are advanced chromosome painting techniques combining multiple chromosome- or region-specific paints in one step. M-FISH identifies all chromosomes or chromosome arms at once, whereas M-BAND identifies the different regions of a single chromosome. The use of either or both can improve the accuracy of karyotyping and help identify cryptic chromosome rearrangements. These probes are prepared by pooling multiple chromosome- or chromosome region-specific DNA libraries, each labelled with a unique combination of fluorochromes. Commercial probes are available, avoiding the need for probe preparation. In the protocol described here, a commercial probe is used. Well-spread metaphases are prepared according to standard techniques, followed by alkaline denaturation and application of the denatured probe. After an incubation period, the slides are washed. A fluorescence microscope with filter sets specific to the fluorescent labels is used for analysis, together with specialised image analysis software. The software interprets the combination of fluorochromes to identify each chromosome and produce a false colour image specific for each chromosome or region. The single colour galleries - which show the hybridisation patterns of the individual fluorochromes - are useful to help interpret and confirm the false colour images produced by the software, including ambiguous signals.

Mutat Res, 701(1), 52--59
August, 2010

Complex exchanges are responsible for the increased effectivenessof C-ions compared to X-rays at the first post-irradiation mitosis.

Ryonfa Lee, Sylwester Sommer, Carola Hartel, Elena Nasonova, Marco Durante, Sylvia Ritter

The purpose of the present study was to investigate as to what extent differences in the linear energy transfer (LET) are reflected at the chromosomal level. For this study human lymphocytes were exposed to 9.5 MeV/u C-ions (1 or 2 Gy, LET=175 keV/microm) or X-rays (1-6 Gy), harvested at 48, 72 or 96 h post-irradiation and aberrations were scored in first cycle metaphases using 24 color fluorescence in situ hybridization (mFISH). Additionally, in selected samples aberrations were measured in prematurely condensed G2-phase cells. Analysis of the time-course of aberrations in first cycle metaphases showed a stable yield of simple and complex exchanges after X-ray irradiation. In contrast, after C-ion exposure the yields profoundly increased with harvesting time complicating the estimation of the frequency of aberrations produced by high LET particles within the entire cell population. This is especially true for the yield of complex exchanges. Complex aberrations dominate the aberration spectrum produced by C-ions. Their fraction was about 50\% for the two measured doses. In contrast, isodoses of X-rays induced smaller proportions of complex aberrations (i.e. 5\% and 15\%, respectively). For both radiation qualities the fraction of complexes did not change with harvesting time. As expected from the different dose deposition of high and low LET radiation, complex exchanges produced by high LET C-ions involved more breaks and more chromosomes than those induced by isodoses of X-rays. Noteworthy, C-ions but not X-rays induced a small number of complex chromatid-isochromatid exchanges that are not expected for cells exposed in the G0-phase. The results obtained so far for cells arrested in G2-phase confirm these patterns. Altogether our data show that the increased effectiveness of C-ions for the induction of aberrations in first cycle cells is determined by complex exchanges, whereas for simple exchanges the relative biological effectiveness is about one.

Radiat Res, 174(1), 14--19
July, 2010

Inversions in chromosome 10 of human thyroid cells induced by acceleratedheavy ions.

D. Pignalosa, S. Ritter, M. Durante

Papillary thyroid carcinoma (PTC) is a known radiation-induced tumor. Rearrangements in human chromosome 10 and in particular intrachromosomal exchanges are often associated with PTC formation. In this study we measured intrachromosomal exchanges in human thyroid follicular cells exposed to sparsely or densely ionizing radiation. Assuming that inversions in chromosome 10 are a biomarker of PTC risk, we estimated the relative biological effectiveness (RBE) of heavy ions using a molecular marker in vitro. The analysis of chromosomal aberrations was performed with the mBAND technique, which allows detection of both inter- and intrachromosomal exchanges. Our results do not show any significant increase in the yield of intrachanges in samples exposed to heavy ions compared to X rays. Within the constraints imposed by the experimental model we used, we conclude that heavy ions would not necessarily be more effective than X rays in the induction of thyroid cancer.

Mutat Res
March, 2010

mBAND analysis of chromosome aberrations in human epithelial cellsinduced by gamma-rays and secondary neutrons of low dose rate.

M. Hada, B. Gersey, P. B. Saganti, R. Wilkins, F. A. Cucinotta, H. Wu

Human risks from chronic exposures to both low- and high-LET radiation are of intensive research interest in recent years. In the present study, human epithelial cells were exposed in vitro to gamma-rays at a dose rate of 17mGy/h or secondary neutrons of 25mGy/h. The secondary neutrons have a broad energy spectrum that simulates the Earth's atmosphere at high altitude, as well as the environment inside spacecrafts like the Russian MIR station and the International Space Station (ISS). Chromosome aberrations in the exposed cells were analyzed using the multicolor banding in situ hybridization (mBAND) technique with chromosome 3 painted in 23 colored bands that allows identification of both inter- and intrachromosome exchanges including inversions. Comparison of present dose responses between gamma-rays and neutron irradiations for the fraction of cells with damaged chromosome 3 yielded a relative biological effectiveness (RBE) value of 26+/-4 for the secondary neutrons. Our results also revealed that secondary neutrons of low dose rate induced a higher fraction of intrachromosome exchanges than gamma-rays, but the fractions of inversions observed between these two radiation types were indistinguishable. Similar to the previous findings after acute radiation exposures, most of the inversions observed in the present study were accompanied by other aberrations. The fractions of complex type aberrations and of unrejoined chromosomal breakages were also found to be higher in the neutron-exposed cells than after gamma-rays. We further analyzed the location of the breaks involved in chromosome aberrations along chromosome 3, and observed hot spots after gamma-ray, but not neutron, exposures.

Cancer Genet Cytogenet, 193(2), 123--126
September, 2009

A case of childhood acute myeloid leukemia AML (M5) with a neocentricchromosome neo(1)(qter-->q23 approximately 24::q23 approximately24-->q43-->neo-->q43-->qter) and tetrasomy of chromosomes 8 and 21.

de Figueiredo, Amanda Faria, Hasmik Mkrtchyan, Thomas Liehr, Eliane Maria Soares Ventura, de Jesus Marques-Salles, Terezinha, Neide Santos, Raul Corr{\^e}a Ribeiro, Eliana Abdelhay, Maria Luiza Macedo Silva

Hyperdiploidy is rarely observed in childhood acute myeloid leukemia (AML). Described here is the case of a 2(1/2)-year-old girl with AML-M5 and 51 chromosomes characterized by double tetrasomy of chromosomes 8 and 21 and also a neocentric derivative chromosome neo(1)(qter-->q23 approximately 24::q23 approximately 24-->q43-->neo-->q43-->qter). Little is known about the prognostic significance of these chromosomal abnormalities in childhood AML. In the actual case, complete remission was achieved after chemotherapy, which continued for 7 months. No acquired neocentric chromosome 1 has been described previously, even though neocentromere formation has been reported for other chromosomes in neoplasms.

Mol Cytogenet, 2, 7
2009

Unbalanced chromosome 1 abnormalities leading to partial trisomy1q in four infants with Down syndrome and acute megakaryocytic leukemia.

Maria Luiza Macedo Silva, do Socorro Pombo-de-Oliveira, Maria, Susana C Raimondi, Hasmik Mkrtchyan, Eliana Abdelhay, de Figueiredo, Amanda Faria, de Souza, Mariana Tavares, Daniela Ribeiro Ney Garcia, de Ventura, Eliane Maria Soares, de Sousa, Adriana Martins, Thomas Liehr

ABSTRACT: BACKGROUND: Children with Down syndrome (DS) have an increased risk of childhood acute leukemia, especially acute megakaryoblastic leukemia (AMKL) also called acute myeloid leukemia (AML) type M7. Here four yet unreported infants with such malignancies are reported. RESULTS: An unbalanced translocation involving chromosome 1 was identified by GTG banding in all cases. These were characterized in more detail by molecular cytogenetic approaches. Additional molecular analysis revealed in three of the four cases mutations in exon 2 of the GATA binding protein 1 (globin transcription factor 1), located in Xp11.23. CONCLUSION: Our results corroborate that abnormalities of chromosome 1 are common in DS-associated AMKL. Whether this chromosomal region contains gene(s) involved in hematopoietic malignant transformation remains to be determined.

Cancer Genet Cytogenet, 182(1), 56--60
April, 2008

Banding and molecular cytogenetic studies detected a CBFB-MYH11 fusion gene that appeared as abnormal chromosomes 1 and 16 in a baby with acute myeloid leukemia FAB M4-Eo.

Maria Luiza Macedo Silva, Susana C Raimondi, Eliana Abdelhay, Madeleine Gross, Hasmik Mkrtchyan, de Figueiredo, Amanda Faria, Raul C Ribeiro, de Jesus Marques-Salles, Terezinha, Elaine S Sobral, Marcelo Poirot Gerardin Land, Thomas Liehr

The acute myeloid leukemia (AML) subtype M4Eo occurs in 5\% of all AML cases and is usually associated with either an inv(16)(p13.1q22) or a t(16;16)(p13.1;q22) chromosomal abnormality. At the molecular level, these abnormalities generate a CBFB-MYH11 fusion gene. Patients with this genetic alteration are usually assigned to a low-risk group and thus receive standard chemotherapy. AML-M4Eo is rarely found in infants. We describe clinical, conventional banding, and molecular cytogenetic data for a 12-month-old baby with AML-M4Eo and a chimeric CBFB-MYH11 fusion gene masked by a novel rearrangement between chromosomes 1 and 16. This rearrangement characterizes a new type of inv(16)(p13.1q22) masked by a chromosome translocation.

Digital object identifier (DOI): 10.1016/j.cancergencyto.2007.12.014

Cytogenet. Genome Res., 121, 79- 87
2008

Elevated chromosome translocation frequencies in New Zealand nuclear test veterans.

M.A. Wahab, E.M. Nickless, R. Najar-M'Kacher, C. Parmentier, J.V. Podd, R.E. Rowland

In 1957/58 the British Government conducted a series of nuclear tests in the mid-Pacific codenamed Operation Grapple, which involved several naval vessels from Britain and New Zealand. Two New Zealand frigates with 551 personnel onboard were stationed at various distances between 20 and 150 nautical miles from ground zero. In the present study we applied the cytomolecular technique mFISH (multicolour fluorescent in situ hybridisation) to investigate a potential link between chromosome abnormalities and possible past radiation exposure in New Zealand nuclear test veterans who participated in Operation Grapple. Compared to age matched controls, the veterans showed significantly higher (P < 0.0001) frequencies of chromosomal abnormalities (275 translocations and 12 dicentrics in 9,360 cells vs. 96 translocations and 1 dicentric in 9,548 cells in the controls), in addition to a significant excess of CCRs (complex chromosomal rearrangements) in the veterans. A Kolmogorov-Smirnoff test showed that the distributions of translocations for the two groups were significantly different.

Cancer Genet Cytogenet, 173(1), 10-6
2007

Structural aberrations of chromosome 7 revealed by a combination of molecular cytogenetic techniques in myeloid malignancies

J Brezinov{\'a}, Z Zemanov{\'a}, S Ransdorfov{\'a}, L Pavlistov{\'a}, L Babick{\'a}, L Houskov{\'a}, J Melicherc{\'i}kov{\'a}, M Siskov{\'a}, J Cerm{\'a}k, K Michalov{\'a}

In bone marrow cells of 33 patients with myelodysplastic syndrome and acute myeloid leukemia, structural rearrangements of chromosome 7 were found with conventional G-banding: 8 with deletions 7q and 25 with translocations. In 29 of the patients, complex karyotypes were confirmed using multicolor fluorescence in situ hybridization (mFISH). Commercial probes (Abbot Molecular) were used for 7q22, 7q31, and 7q35, the regions most frequently deleted in myeloid malignancies. In three cases without deletions, high-resolution multicolor banding (mBAND) for chromosome 7 revealed other aberrations. Five groups of chromosomal rearrangements were established: (a) deletion 7q as a sole aberration (2 cases), (b) deletion 7q and complex karyotypes (6 cases), (c) combined translocations and deletions of 7q (17 cases), (d) combined translocation and deletion 7p (5 cases), and (e) translocation of chromosomes 7 without deletion 7p or 7q (3 cases). Deletions of all three FISH-screened regions were the most frequent, with heterogeneous breakpoints. The region 7p13.2 approximately p15.2 was most commonly deleted. Most of the deletions were cryptic, not detectable with conventional cytogenetics. Aberrations of chromosome 7 are associated with a very poor outcome; survival time in our cohort was short (median 7 months).

Int. J. Molecular Medicine, 17, 209- 213
2006

Molecular cytogenetic characterization of the mouse cell line WMP2 by spectral karyotyping and multicolor banding applying murine probes.

C. Karst, V. Trifonov, S.A. Romanenko, U. Claussen, K. Mrasek, S. Michel, P. Avner, T. Liehr

The Moloney murine leukemia virus-transformed suspension cell line WMP2 is derived from wild mice (Mus musculus) of the WMP/WMP strain. These mice carry nine pairs of metacentric Robertsonian translocation chromosomes. As the chromosomes of the wild-type mouse are all acrocentric, metaphase spreads of the WMP2 cells seam to be highly suited for physical gene mapping. Here we studied the WMP2 line using spectral karyotyping (SKY) combined with new established mouse specific multicolor banding (mcb) probes for the chromosomes X, 3, 4, 6 and 18. SKY revealed that the WMP2 cell line developed further four derivative chromosomes. After application of mcb five previously unrecognizable intrachromosomal rearrangements with 9 breakpoints were detected for the studied chromosomes.

Chromosoma, 115, 459- 467
2006

The breakage-fusion-bridge (BFB) cycle as a mechanism for generating genetic heterogeneity in osteosarcoma.

S. Selvarajah, M. Yoshimoto, P.C. Park, G. Maire, J. Paderova, J. Bayani, G. Lim, K. Al-Romaih, J.A. Squire, M. Zielenska

Osteosarcoma (OS) is characterized by chromosomal instability and high copy number gene amplification. The breakage–fusion–bridge (BFB) cycle is a well-established mechanism of genome instability in tumors and in vitro models used to study the origins of complex chromosomal rearrangements and cancer genome amplification. To determine whether the BFB cycle could be increasing the de novo rate of formation of cytogenetic aberrations in OS, the frequency of anaphase bridge configurations and dicentric chromosomes in four OS cell lines was quantified. An increased level of anaphase bridges and dicentrics was observed in all the OS cell lines. There was also a strong association between the frequencies of anaphase bridges, dicentrics, centrosomal anomalies, and multipolar mitotic figures in all the OS cell lines, indicating a possible link in the mechanisms that led to the structural and numerical instabilities observed in OS. In summary, this study has provided strong support for the role of the BFB cycle in generating the extensive structural chromosome aberrations, as well as cell-to-cell cytogenetic variation observed in OS, thus conferring the genetic diversity for OS tumor progression.

Radiat Environ Biophys, 44(3), 219--224
December, 2005

Space radiation does not induce a significant increase of intrachromosomalexchanges in astronauts' lymphocytes.

M. Horstmann, M. Durante, C. Johannes, R. Pieper, G. Obe

Chromosome aberration analysis in astronauts has been used to provide direct, biologically motivated estimates of equivalent doses and risk associated to cosmic radiation exposure during space flight. However, the past studies concentrated on measurements of dicentrics and translocations, while chromosome intrachanges (inversions) have never been measured in astronauts' samples. Recent data reported in the literature suggest that densely ionizing radiation can induce a large fraction of intrachanges, thus leading to the suspicion that interchanges grossly underestimate the cosmic radiation-induced cytogenetic damage in astronauts. We have analyzed peripheral blood lymphocytes from 11 astronauts involved in short- or long-term space flights in low-Earth orbit using high-resolution multicolor banding to assess the frequency of intrachromosomal exchanges in both pre- and post-flight samples. We did not detect any inversions in chromosome 5 from a total of 2800 cells in astronauts' blood. In addition, no complex type exchanges were found in a total of 3590 astronauts' lymphocytes analyzed by multifluor fluorescence in situ hybridisation. We conclude that, within the statistical power of this study, the analysis of interchanges for biological dosimetry in astronauts does not significantly underestimate the space radiation-induced cytogenetic damage, and complex-type exchanges or intrachanges have limited practical use for biodosimetry at very low doses.