EMF Health-effects Research

Interactions of RF radiation-induced hyperthermia and 2-methoxyethanol teratogenicity in rats.

Nelson BK, Conover DL, Krieg EF Jr, Snyder DL, Edwards RM

Bioelectromagnetics;18(5):349-359, 1997

Radiofrequency (RF) radiation is used in a variety of workplaces. In addition to RF radiation, many workers are concurrently exposed to numerous chemicals; exposed workers include those involved with the microelectronics industry, plastic sealers, and electrosurgical units. The developmental toxicity of RF radiation is associated with the degree and duration of hyperthermia induced by the exposure.

Previous animal research indicates that hyperthermia induced by an elevation in ambient temperature can potentiate the toxicity and teratogenicity of some chemical agents. We previously demonstrated that combined exposure to RF radiation (10 MHz) and the industrial solvent, 2-methoxyethanol (2ME), produces enhanced teratogenicity in rats.

The purpose of the present research is to determine the effects of varying the degree and duration of hyperthermia induced by RF radiation (sufficient to maintain colonic temperatures at control [38.5], 39.0, 40.0, or 41.0 degrees C for up to 6 h) and 2ME (100 mg/kg) administered on gestation day 13 of rats. Focusing on characterizing the dose-response pattern of interactions, this research seeks to determine the lowest interactive effect level. Day 20 fetuses were examined for external and skeletal malformations.

The results are consistent with previous observations. Significant interactions were observed between 2ME and RF radiation sufficient to maintain colonic temperatures at 41 degrees C for 1 h, but no consistent interactions were seen at lower temperatures even with longer durations. These data indicate that combined exposure effects should be considered when developing both RF radiation and chemical exposure guidelines and intervention strategies.

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