EMF Health-effects Research

Proliferation, oxidative stress and cell death in cells exposed to 872 MHz radiofrequency radiation and oxidants,

Hyt A, Luukkonen J, Juutilainen J, Naarala J,

Radiat, Res, 170(2):235-243, 2008


Human SH-SY5Y neuroblastoma and mouse L929 fibroblast cells were exposed to 872 MHz radiofrequency (RF) radiation using continuous waves (CW) or a modulated signal similar to that emitted by GSM mobile phones at a specific absorption rate (SAR) of 5 W/kg in isothermal conditions.

To investigate possible combined effects with other agents, menadione was used to induce reactive oxygen species, and tert-butylhydroperoxide (t-BOOH) was used to induce lipid peroxidation. After 1 or 24 h of exposure, reduced cellular glutathione levels, lipid peroxidation, proliferation, caspase 3 activity, DNA fragmentation and viability were measured.

Two statistically significant differences related to RF radiation were observed: Lipid peroxidation induced by t-BOOH was increased in SH-SY5Y (but not in L929) cells, and menadione-induced caspase 3 activity was increased in L929 (but not in SH-SY5Y) cells. Both differences were statistically significant only for the GSM-modulated signal. The other end points were not significantly affected in any of the experimental conditions, and no effects were observed from exposure to RF radiation alone.

The positive findings may be due to chance, but they may also reflect effects that occur only in cells sensitized by chemical stress. Further studies are required to investigate the reproducibility and dose response of the possible effects.



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