Center for High-Throughput


Radiation Biodosimetry

After a large-scale radiological event, there will be a major need to assess, within a few days, the radiation doses received by tens or hundreds of thousands of individuals.

Our Center is a research consortium to develop practical, high throughput, minimally-invasive radiation dose assessment devices and techniques to meet this need.

About our work:

"Beyond simple exposures"

Our initial studies focused exclusively on external whole-body photon irradiation. To build on these studies, our current focus is to assess the significance of the variety of other radiation scenarios that are likely to occur, in particular the effects of partial-body exposure, internal emitters, low dose rate, and neutron exposure.

"Beyond dose: Towards individual radiosensitivity"

In that we have developed high-throughput systems for using various biomarkers for biodosimetry, we also are in a unique position to probe the application of these biomarkers for predicting inter-individual sensitivity to acute radiation syndromes. This will enable us to examine correlations between our high-throughput biomarkers and individual acute radiation sensitivity, and it will enable us to probe the associated mechanisms of individual acute radiation sensitivity.

This Consortium represents a multidisciplinary balance between radiation biologists, radiation physicists, radiation chemists, mechanical engineers, software engineers, product development experts, commercial companies in the field, and end users. The three areas we have identified as having the highest potential for high-throughput biodosimetry are cytogenetics, functional genomics, and metabolomics. Each area has its own project in the Current Directions and is supported by Irradiation, Fabrication, and Informatics and Biostatistics cores.


Current Directions:

Milestones of Research:

1) Developed high-throughput systems for using various biomarkers for biodoismetry

2) Demonstrated, for the first time, the ability of a single gene set to predict radiation dose over a significant period post-irradiation without individual pre-exposure controls

3) Demonstrated the potential for a urine-based metabolomics biodosimetry system, with signals increasing in a dose-response manner, and with a signal lifetime of at least several days.

Pilot Project Research Program:

The Consortium supports several Pilot Projects each year that have the potential to increase the capabilities for high-throughput biodosimetry, but may not have the prior development needed for a full stand alone grant.  Previously funded Pilot Projects are reported on the Pilot Projects page.

Request for 2014 Pilot Project Proposals. (Deadline - March 31, 2014.)

  • We are seeking applications for pilot project funding relating to high-throughput minimally-invasive radiation biodosimetry.
  • The projects will be part of a joint NIH-funded program involving Columbia University, Georgetown University, Lovelace Respiratory Research Institute, New York University, Translational Genomics Research Institute, and University of Bern. Details of the program can be found at
  • We currently support biodosimetry projects using cytogenetic, gene expression, and metabolomic endpoints, and we are looking for biodosimetry-oriented pilot projects which will either complement these areas, or open up new research avenues. The projects can be biologically- or physically-based, but must ultimately be directed towards practical high-throughput radiation biodosimetry or dosimetry, after external photon or neutron exposure, or internal radiation exposure. Innovative proposals for testing new concepts are encouraged.
  • Each pilot project will be of limited duration (up to one year) and of a limited budget (up to $75,000 direct costs/year/project). The maximum individual award is $100K per year total costs.
  • The application due date is March 31, 2014, with a projected start date of August 1, 2014.
  •  Full application details are given on the next page. Please address technical inquiries to the PI, David J. Brenner at Administrative questions and applications should be addressed to Erica Pena at, telephone: 212-305-5660.



Training Courses and Workshops:

We have hosted several courses and workshops on Radiation Biodosimetry.  The lectures from these courses are available as Podcasts for downloading

Extended abstracts for "Predicting Individual Radiation Sensitivity: Current and Evolving Technologies" hosted at Columbia University, March 17-18, 2008 are available in Radiation Research 170, 666-675, 2008

The six institutions involved in the research consortium are:

    Columbia University, New York, NY (lead institution)

    Georgetown University, Washington, D.C.

    Lovelace Respiratory Research Institute, Albuquerque, NM

    New York University School of Medicine, New York, NY

    Translational Genomics Research Institute, Phoenix, AZ

    University of Bern, Bern, Switzerland


Research is funded by the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID), part of the National Institute of Health (NIH)


website updated 03/28/2012

Home| Cytogenetic Biodosimetry | Functional Genomic Biodosimetry | Metabolomic Biodosimetry
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