EMF Health-effects Research

Biological Effects of Electromagnetic Fields-Mechanisms for the Effects of Pulsed Microwave Radiation on Protein Conformation

Laurence JA, French PW, Lindner RA, Mckenzie DR,

J Theor Biol 206(2):291-298, 2000

Microwave exposure under "athermal" conditions occurs when no temperature rise can be measured by conventional thermometry. The existence of biological effects arising from the athermal exposure is still controversial, partly because of a lack of the linear dose response relation.

We propose a model in which pulsed microwave radiation causes a triggering of the heat shock or stress response by altering the conformation of proteins through a transient heating of the protein and its close environment. We support this by modelling using the heat diffusion equation and show that pulsed exposure even when athermal can lead to transient temperature excursions outside the normal range.

We propose that the power window phenomenon in which biological effects are observed at low power levels may be caused by an incomplete triggering of the heat shock response.

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