Risk of death from solid cancer among residents of the Techa Riverside and the East Urals Radioactive Trace areas exposed to radiation: comparative analysis

«Radiation and Risk», 2017, vol. 26, No. 1, pp.100-114

DOI: 10.21870/0131-3878-2017-26-1-100-114


Krestinina L.Yu. – Head of Lab., C. Sc., Med. Urals Research Center for Radiation Medicine, Chelyabinsk, Russia. Contacts: 68-a, Vorovsky Str., Chelyabinsk, Russia, 454076. Tel.: +7 (351) 232-79-18; e-mail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. .
Silkin S.S. – Researcher. Urals Research Center for Radiation Medicine, Chelyabinsk, Russia.
Mikryukova L.D. – Researcher, C. Sc., Med. Urals Research Center for Radiation Medicine, Chelyabinsk, Russia.
Epifanova S.B. – Sen. Engineer. Urals Research Center for Radiation Medicine, Chelyabinsk, Russia.
Akleyev A.V. – Director, MD, Prof., Honored Scientist of the Russian Federation. Urals Research Center for Radiation Medicine, Chelyabinsk, Russia.


At present knowledge of health risks and health effects of protracted exposure to low and moderate (less than 1 Gy) doses of ionizing radiation is incomplete. Data from long-term follow up of cohorts of sufficient size can be important source of information for analysis and for filling in the knowledge gaps. The purpose of the study is to present results of comparative analysis of long-term health effects of exposure of residents of the Techa riverside and the East Urals Radioactive Trace areas to radiation due to the operation of the nuclear complex Mayak. The average accumulated dose to soft tissues received by the population is 30-40 mGy. Individual dose to members of the two cohorts were calculated with the improved version of the Techa River Dosimetry System TRDS-2009. Risks of death from solid cancer per dose unit in the cohorts of residents of the Techa riverside and the East Urals Radioactive Trace areas exposed to protracted low and moderate radiation doses are similar, a linear relation between dose and response suggests statistically significant association between the variables. Results from comparative analysis of the cohorts show the possibility to merge two cohorts into one, consequently to increase statistical power of the cohort and to decrease uncertainty in risk assessment.

Key words
Ionizing radiation, Nuclear Complex Mayak, the Techa River, the East Urals Radioactive Trace, cohort study, solid cancers, mortality risk, late effects of radiation, exposure to low doses of radiation, dose-response relation, chronic exposure.


1. Buldakov L.A., Demin S.N., Kosenko M.M., Kostyuchenko V.A., Koshurnikova N.A., Krestinina L.Yu., Saurov M.M., Терноvskiy I.A., Tokarskaya Z.B., Shvedov V.L. Meditsinskie posledstviya radiatsionnoy avarii na Yuzhnom Urale v 1957 g. [Medical consequences of the radiation accident in the Southern Urals in 1957]. Meditsinskaya radiologiya – Medical Radiology, 1990, no. 12, pp. 11-16.

2. Ecological and health effects of the radiation accident of 1957 at the Mayak PA /Eds.: A.V. Akleyev, M.F. Kiselev. Moscow: “Medbioextrem” Rus. Min. of Health, 2001. 290 p. (In Russian).

3. Akleyev A.V., Kosenko M.M., Krestinina L.Yu., Shalaginov S.A., Degteva M.O., Startsev N.V. Zdorov'e naseleniya, prozhivayushchego na radioaktivnykh territoriyakh Ural'skogo regiona [Health status of population exposed to environmental contamination in the Southern Urals]. Moscow: Radekon Publ., 2001. 194 p.

4. Kosenko M.M. Akleev A.V., Krestinina L.Yu., Startsev N.V., Zhidkova E.M., Hoffman D.A, Tomas T.L., Preston D. Supervision methodology of the cohort of subjects who were exposed to radiation on the Techa River. Sibirskij medicinskij zhurnal – Siberian Medical Journal, 2003, vol. 18, no. 5, pp. 40-48. (In Russian).

5. Krestinina L.Yu., Preston D.L., Ostroumova E.V., Ron E., V'yushkova O.V., Akleev A.V. Cancer mortali-ty in the Techa River cohort: preliminary risk estimates. Bjulleten' sibirskoy mediciny – Bulletin of the Siberian Medicine, 2005, vol. 4, no. 2, pp. 52-62. (In Russian).

6. Medical-biological and ecological impacts of radioactive contamination of the Techa River. Eds.: A.V. Akleyev, M.F. Kiselev. Moscow: “Medbioextrem” Rus. Min. of Health, 2001. 530 p. (In Russian).

7. Degteva M.O., Vorobiova M.I., Kozheurov V.P., Tolstykh E.I., Anspaugh L.R., Napier B.A. Dose reconstruction system for the exposed population living along the Techa River. Health Phys., 2000, vol. 78, no. 5, pp. 542-554.

8. Degteva M.O., Vorobiova M.I., Tolstykh E.I., Shagina N.B., Shishkina E.A., Anspaugh L.R., Napier B.A., Bougrov N.G., Shved V.A., Tokareva E.E. Development of an improved dose reconstruction system for the Techa River population affected by the operation of the Mayak Production Association. Radiat. Res., 2006, vol. 166, pp. 255-270.

9. Degteva M.O., Shagina N.B., Tolstykh E.I., Vorobiova M.I., Anspaugh L.R., Napier B.A. Individual dose calculations with use of the Revised Techa River Dosimetry System TRDS-2009D. Final Report for Mile-stone 22. Chelyabinsk, Russia and Salt Lake City, Utah: Urals Research Center for Radiation Medicine and University of Utah, 2009. 42 p.

10. Shagina N.B., Tolstykh E.I., Degteva M.O., Vorobiova M.I., Anspaugh L.R., Napier B.A. Re-evaluation of radionuclide intakes for Techa River residents on the basis of revised source-term parameters. Health Phys., 2012, vol. 103, no 2, pp. 96-97.

11. Schonfeld S.J., Krestinina L.Y., Epifanova S.B., Degteva M.O., Akleyev A.V., Preston D.L. Solid cancer mortality in the Techa River Cohort (1950-2007). Radiat. Res., 2013, vol. 179, pp.183-189.

12. Krestinina L.Yu., Silkin S.S., Epifanova S.B. Analysis of solid cancer mortality risk for the population ex-posed in the territory of East-Urals radioactive trace over a 50-year period. Radiatsionnaya gigiena – Radiation Hygiene, 2014, vol. 7, no. 1, pp. 23-29. (In Russian).

13. Krestinina L.Yu., Akleev A.V. Cancer mortality in EURT cohort members exposed of chronic irradiation with low and intermediate doses. B’ulleten' sibirskoj mediciny – Bulletin of the Siberian Medicine, 2005, vol. 4, no. 2, pp. 36-44. (In Russian).

14. Akleyev A.V., Krestinina L.Y., Preston D., Davis F., Degteva M.O., Anspo L., Startcev N.V., Napier B., Ron E. Radiogenic risk of malignant neoplasms for Techa riverside residents. Meditsinskaya Radiologiya i Radiatsionnaya Bezopasnost' – Medical Radiology and Radiation Safety, 2008, vol. 53, no. 4, pp. 13-37. (In Russian).

15. Napier B.A., Degteva M.O., Shagina N.B., Anspaugh L.R. Uncertainty Analysis for the Techa River Dosimetry System. Meditsinskaya Radiologiya i Radiatsionnaya Bezopasnost' – Мedical Radiology and Radiation Safety, 2013, vol. 58, no. 1, pp. 5-28. (In Russian).

6. Preston D.L., Lubin D.B., Pierce D.A., McConney M.E. Epicure Users Guide. Seattle, WA, HiroSoft International Corporation, 1993. 330 p.

17. National Research Council (US). Committee to Assess Health Risks from Exposure to Low Level of Ionizing Radiation. Health risks from exposure to low levels of ionizing radiation: BEIR VII Phase 2. Washington, D.C., National Academies Press, 2006. 422 p.

18. Kashcheev V.V., Chekin S.Y., Maksioutov M.A., Tumanov K.A., Ivanov V.K. Dependence of radiation risk of solid cancers in emergency accident workers of the Chernobyl accident on their age at exposure. Radiatsiya i risk – Radiation and Risk, 2009, vol. 18, no. 3, pp. 48-53. (In Russian).

19. Shilnikova N.S., Preston D.L., Ron E., Gilbert E.S., Vassilenko E.K., Romanov S.A., Kuznetsova I.S., Sokolnikov M.E., Okatenko P.V., Kreslov V.V., Koshurnikova N.A. Cancer mortality risk among workers at the Mayak nuclear complex. Radiat. Res., 2003, vol. 159, no 6, pp. 787-798.

20. Preston D.L., Shimizu Y., Pierce D.A., Suyama A., Mabuchi K. Studies of mortality of Atomic Bomb Survivers. Report 13: Solid Cancer and Noncancer Diseases Mortality: 1950-1997. Radiat. Res., 2003, vol. 160, pp. 381-407.

Full-text article (in Russian)