X-Ray survival curves were determined using a panel of 17 human lung cancer cell lines, with emphasis on non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC). In contrast to classic small cell lung cancer (SCLC) cell lines, NSCLC cell lines were generally less sensitive to radiation as evidenced by higher radiation survival curve extrapolation numbers, surviving fraction values following a 2 Gy dose (SF2) and the mean inactivation dose values (D̄) values. The spectrum of in vitro radiation responses observed was similar to that expected in clinical practice, although mesothelioma was unexpectedly sensitive in vitro. Differences in radiosensitivity were best distinguished by comparison of SF2 values. Some NSCLC lines were relatively sensitive, and in view of this demonstrable variability in radiation sensitivity, the SF2 value may be useful for in vitro predictive assay testing of clinical specimens.
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