A single ionizing event may alter some biological processes. Other, equally significant processes are apparently unaffected by a billion times as much radiation. Few physical or chemical events can be measured over such a great range; even fewer pharmacological events can be toxic over such a wide range of measurements. Even if there were no radiation-accident problem in medicine, the subject of radiosensitivity would have a theoretical importance in the science of pharmacology. To discuss the questions of "how" and "why" of such an extremely wide range of sensitivity to radiation in living organisms, a symposium of many disciplines was held at the Brookhaven National Laboratory in June, 1961. This comprehensive book is a report of the proceedings.
The proceedings do not set up desoxyribose nucleic acid ( DNA) as the "key to life" in newspaper fashion, but they pay proper homage to a quarter of a century of biochemical research.