Normal tissue reactions to radiotherapy: towards tailoring treatment dose by genotype

Nat Rev Cancer. 2009 Feb;9(2):134-42. doi: 10.1038/nrc2587. Epub 2009 Jan 16.


A key challenge in radiotherapy is to maximize radiation doses to cancer cells while minimizing damage to surrounding healthy tissue. As severe toxicity in a minority of patients limits the doses that can be safely given to the majority, there is interest in developing a test to measure an individual's radiosensitivity before treatment. Variation in sensitivity to radiation is an inherited genetic trait and recent progress in genotyping raises the possibility of genome-wide studies to characterize genetic profiles that predict patient response to radiotherapy.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Cell Survival / radiation effects
  • Dose-Response Relationship, Radiation
  • Genotype
  • Humans
  • Neoplasms / genetics
  • Neoplasms / radiotherapy*
  • Radiation Tolerance
  • Radiotherapy / adverse effects*