[ RadSafe ] Radioactive Reindeer

Falo, Gerald A CIV USARMY MEDCOM PHC (US) gerald.a.falo.civ at mail.mil
Tue Oct 7 07:52:37 CDT 2014


Apparently, yes - some species of mushrooms accumulate cesium. According to "No Significant Contribution of Arbuscular Mycorrhizal Fungi to Transfer of Radiocesium from Soil to Plants" (http://aem.asm.org/content/70/11/6512.full), "It is well known that many ectomycorrhizal fungi accumulate radiocesium, and during the years following the Chernobyl nuclear accident in April 1986, fruiting bodies of many ectomycorrhizal fungi were found to contain high levels of radiocesium [references in the original]."

In "Environmental Radioactivity from Natural, Industrial, and Military Sources" (4th ed., pp 106-107), there's a discussion of the "Laplanders and other residents of the far north are subject to relatively high 137Cs intake owing to their dependence on reindeer, which feed on lichens, which in turn have a tendency to concentrate a variety of trace substances present in the atmosphere." 

I hope that this helps.



The opinions and statements here are solely those of the author and do not necessarily represent the views of the US Army, US Department of Defense, or the US Government.

Gerald A. Falo, Ph.D., CHP
Army Institute of Public Health - Health Physics Program
gerald.a.falo.civ at mail.mil

-----Original Message-----
From: radsafe-bounces at health.phys.iit.edu [mailto:radsafe-bounces at health.phys.iit.edu] On Behalf Of Estabrooks, H Bates (IHK)
Sent: Tuesday, October 07, 2014 8:18 AM
To: The International Radiation Protection (Health Physics) Mailing List (radsafe at health.phys.iit.edu)
Subject: [ RadSafe ] Radioactive Reindeer


Do mushrooms selectively take up Cesium?

Bates Estabrooks
Y-12 NSC
Radiological Control Engineer-Staff Training Radiological Controls Emergency Program Coordinator

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