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EMF Study
(Database last updated on Sep 28, 2022)

ID Number 1920
Study Type In Vitro
Model In vitro studies at 940 MHz (CW) with human blood, luciferase solution and calf thymus DNA.

Human peripheral blood samples were treated to remove 2,3-diphosphoglycerate (DPG - which affects hemoglobin affinity for oxygen) and exposed in solution to 910 or 940 MHz (CW) RF for 15, 30, 60, 90, or 120 minutes in a temperature controlled incubator and using a custom made antenna. Exposure levels were not defined in terms of SAR, but the authors report that the field strength of "most" exposures was 77 V/m. The authors report that exposure increasingly reduced the affinity of Hb for oxygen in a time-dependent manner. They further report that exposure changed both the secondary structure of the alpha subunit and compacted the tertiary structure of the Hb complex, and that exposed Hb had slightly more thermal stability and showed decreased aggregation than unexposed Hb. The authors suggest these observations may be due to altered binding of the heme cofactor molecule. AUTHORS' ABSTRACT: Sefidbakht et al. 2013 (IEEE #5301): We designed a rectangular waveguide exposure system to study the effects of mobile phone frequency (940 MHz) electromagnetic fields (EMF) on luciferase structure and activity. The luciferase activity of exposed samples was significantly higher than that of unexposed samples. Dynamic light scattering of the exposed samples showed smaller hydrodynamic radii compared to unexposed samples (20 nm vs. 47 nm ± 5%). The exposed samples also showed less tendency to form aggregates, monitored by turbidity measurements at » = 360 nm. A microwave dielectric measurement was performed to study the hydration properties of luciferase solutions with a precision network analyzer over frequency ranges from 0.2 to 20 GHz before and after exposure. The change in the dielectric properties of the exposed luciferase solution was related to the disaggregation potency of the applied field. Together, our results suggested that direct interactions with luciferase molecules and its dipole moment were responsible for the reduced aggregation and enhanced luciferase activity upon exposure to the EMF. AUTHORS' ABSTRACT: Hekmat et al. 2013 (IEEE #5616): Currently, the biological effects of nonionizing electromagnetic fields (EMFs) including radiofrequency (RF) radiation have been the subject of numerous experimental and theoretical studies. The aim of this study is to evaluate the possible biological effects of mobile phone RF (940 MHz, 15 V/m and SAR=40 mW/kg) on the structure of calf thymus DNA (ct DNA) immediately after exposure and 2 h after 45 min exposure via diverse range of spectroscopic instruments. The UV-vis and circular dichroism (CD) experiments depict that mobile phone EMFs can remarkably cause disturbance on ct DNA structure. In addition, the DNA samples, immediately after exposure and 2 h after 45 min exposure, are relatively thermally unstable compared to the DNA solution, which was placed in a small shielded box (unexposed ct DNA). Furthermore, the exposed DNA samples (the DNA samples that were exposed to 940 MHz EMF) have more fluorescence emission when compared with the unexposed DNA, which may have occurred attributable to expansion of the exposed DNA structure. The results of dynamic light scattering (DLS) and zeta potential experiments demonstrate that RF-EMFs lead to increment in the surface charge and size of DNA. The structure of DNA immediately after exposure is not significantly different from the DNA sample 2 h after 45 min exposure. In other words, the EMF-induced conformational changes are irreversible. Collectively, our results reveal that 940 MHz can alter the structure of DNA. The displacement of electrons in DNA by EMFs may lead to conformational changes of DNA and DNA disaggregation. Results from this study could have an important implication on the health effects of RF-EMFs exposure. In addition, this finding could proffer a novel strategy for the development of next generation of mobile phone. AUTHORS' ABSTRACT: Sefidbakht et al. 2014 (IEEE #5699): The effects of mobile phone frequency electromagnetic field (RF-EMF, 940 MHz) on a stable cell line (HEK293T) harbouring the firefly luciferase gene were evaluated. A waveguide exposure system with 1 W input power provided the mean specific absorption rate of H0.09 W kg(-1) in 35 mm Petri dishes. The effects of exposure duration (15, 30, 45, 60 and 90 min) on luciferase activity and oxidative response elements were investigated. Endogenous luciferase activity was reduced after 30 and 45 min of continuous exposure, while after 60 min, the exposed cell lysate showed higher luciferase activity compared with the non-exposed control. Reactive oxygen species (ROS) generation was highest in the 30 min exposed cells as studied by 2',7'-dichlorodihydrofluorescein diacetate (DCFH-DA) fluorescence. The observed boost in ROS was then followed by a sharp rise in catalase (CAT) and superoxide dismutase (SOD) activity and elevation of glutathione (GSH) during the 45 min exposure. Decrease in lipid peroxidation (malondialdehyde, MDA) was meaningful for the 45 and 60 min exposed cells. Therefore, it appears that an increase in the activity of luciferase after 60 min of continuous exposure could be associated with a decrease in ROS level caused by activation of the oxidative response. This ability in cells to overcome oxidative stress and compensate the luciferase activity could also be responsible for the adaptive response mechanism detected in ionizing radiation studies with RF-EMF pre-treatments.

Findings Effects
Status Completed With Publication
Principal Investigator University of Tehran, Iran
Funding Agency ?????
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  • Mousavy, SJ et al. Int J Biol Macromol, (2009) 44:278-285
  • Sefidbakht, Y et al. Bioelectromagnetics., (2013) 34:489-498
  • Hekmat, A et al. Ecotoxicol Environ Saf., (2013) 88:35-41
  • Sefidbakht , Y et al. Photochemical & Photobiological Science. , (2014) 13:1082-1092
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