EMF Health-effects Research

Microwave exposure alters the expression of 2-5A-dependent RNase

Krause D, Mullins JM, Penafiel LM, Meister R, Nardone RM,

Radiat Res 127(2):164-170, 1991

The effects of 2.45-GHz continuous-wave microwaves (SAR = 130 mW/g) on the expression of the interferon-regulated enzymes 2'-5'-oligoadenylate (2-5A) synthetase(s) and 2-5A-dependent endoribonuclease (RNase L) were studied in murine L929 cells.

Cells growing as monolayers were removed from the substratum and placed in suspension culture for a 4-h sham or microwave exposure. The cells were returned to monolayer growth for 18 h, and then harvested and assayed to determine the amount of RNase L protein (via [32P]2-5A binding) and the specific activities of RNase L and 2-5A synthetase.

Binding of radioactive 2-5A to RNase L for sham- and microwave-exposed samples was 14.5 and 36.4% above control, respectively (the microwave-exposed bound 19.0% more probe than the sham-exposed). The increases in 2-5A binding were accompanied by corresponding elevations of RNase L specific activity. In contrast, sham or microwave irradiation produced no alterations in 2-5A synthetase specific activity.

No detectable differences were noted in the postexposure cell viability, plating efficiency, or proliferation rate. Also, there were no detectable differences in cell viability or plating efficiency between controls and cultures irradiated for 2 h when the temperature was simultaneously increased to above normal physiological limits (39 to 45 degrees C). The SAR (130 mW/g) and the power density (95 mW/cm2) used for the greater part of this study were nearly 20 times higher than the ANSI limit of 8 mW/g and 5 mW/cm2 for any 1 g of exposed human tissue.

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