Public fear of radiation is rooted in the perception that all ionizing radiation damaging. Our goal is to push back against this fear by showing that low doses of ionizing radiation can increase lifespan and cure disease.
Radiation Hormesis is the hypothesis that low doses of ionizing radiation (within the region of and just above natural background levels) are beneficial, stimulating the activation of repair mechanisms that protect against disease, that are not activated in absence of ionizing radiation. The reserve repair mechanisms are hypothesized to be sufficiently effective when stimulated as to not only cancel the detrimental effects of ionizing radiation but also inhibit disease not related to radiation exposure (Wikipedia).
Radiation Hormesis is illustrated by the green line in the adjacent figure. Low does radiation (less than “d”) can have a beneficial effect on biological systems while at high doses (greater than “d”), the effect is negative. The contrasting hypothesis - Linear No Threshold (LNT, pink line in adjacent figure) - is that ionizing radiation is damaging in proportion to its dose. LNT has been adopted by most regulatory agencies as conservative. The US National Research Council (BEIR VII, phase 2, 2006) rejects the generalization of the Hormesis hypothesis arguing that, "the presence of a true dose threshold demands totally error-free DNA damage response and repair." They specifically worry about is double strand DNA breaks.
One of us (Cuttler) published an original analysis of beagle dog data acquired by the US department of Energy showing that beagle dog lifespan was increased by low dose radiation. With regard to human therapy, Cuttler published a case study of a patient with end stage dementia who recovered sufficient cognitive function to be discharged from hospice and moved back to day care after periodic head CT scans. Double-blind studies directed at reversing dementia using CT scans are now being initiated. In addition recent articles show low level radiation to be of use in the treatment of prostate cancer, cancer immunotherapy and in stimulating the immune system.