Geant4-DNA simulations using complex DNA geometries generated by the DnaFabric tool
Several DNA representations are used to study radio-induced complex DNA damages depending on the approach and the required level of granularity. Among all approaches, the mechanistic one requires the most resolved DNA models that can go down to atomistic DNA descriptions. The complexity of such DNA models make them hard to modify and adapt in order to take into account different biological conditions. The DnaFabric project was started to provide a tool to generate, visualize and modify such complex DNA models. In the current version of DnaFabric, the models can be exported to the Geant4 code to be used as targets in the Monte Carlo simulation. In this work, the project was used to generate two DNA fibre models corresponding to two DNA compaction levels representing the hetero and the euchromatin. The fibres were imported in a Geant4 application where computations were performed to estimate the influence of the DNA compaction on the amount of calculated DNA damages. The relative difference of the DNA damages computed in the two fibres for the same number of projectiles was found to be constant and equal to 1.3 for the considered primary particles (protons from 300 keV to 50 MeV). However, if only the tracks hitting the DNA target are taken into account, then the relative difference is more important for low energies and decreases to reach zero around 10 MeV. The computations were performed with models that contain up to 18000 DNA nucleotide pairs. Nevertheless, DnaFabric will be extended to manipulate multi-scale models that go from the molecular to the cellular levels.