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31/03/2010 - March 2010 - Science Update

The following is a quick summary of another twenty papers that have come out over the last few months related to effects of electromagnetic radiation. Some of the papers are notable papers that have been published very recently, others are papers that were published a few months ago that have not yet made it to one of the Science Updates. From this point onwards, to catch up with the large quantity of papers being published, we will be simply posting the abstract, with our comments interspersed in italicised bold where appropriate.


1. P Viel JF et al, (August 2009) Radiofrequency exposure in the French general population: band, time, location and activity variability, Environ Int. 2009 Nov;35(8):1150-4. Epub 2009 Aug 4 [View Author's abstract conclusions] [View on Pubmed]
 

Information on the exposure of individual persons to radiofrequency (RF) fields is scarce, although such data are crucial in order to develop a suitable exposure assessment method, and frame the hypothesis and design of future epidemiological studies. The main goal of this survey is to assess individual RF exposure on a population basis, while clarifying the relative contribution of different sources to the total exposure. A total of 377 randomly selected people were analyzed. Each participant was supplied with a personal exposure meter for 24-hour measurements (weekday), and kept a time-location-activity diary. Electric field strengths were recorded in 12 different RF bands every 13s. Summary statistics were calculated with the robust regression on order statistics method. Most of the time, recorded field strengths were not detectable with the exposure meter. Total field, cordless phones, WiFi-microwave, and FM transmitters stood apart with a proportion above the detection threshold of 46.6%, 17.2%, 14.1%, and 11.0%, respectively. The total field mean value was 0.201 V/m, higher in urban areas, during daytime, among adults, and when moving. When focusing on specific channels, the highest mean exposure resulted from FM sources (0.044 V/m), followed by WiFi-microwaves (0.038 V/m), cordless phones (0.037V/m), and mobile phones (UMTS: 0.036 V/m, UMTS: 0.037 V/m). Various factors, however, contributed to a high variability in RF exposure assessment. These population-based estimates should therefore be confirmed by further surveys to better characterize the exposure situation in different microenvironments. The recent study by Frei et al that we covered last year highlighted that base stations were a considerably higher source of exposure than the phone units themselves, and it would be interesting to see these figures broken down in this study. The big surprise was how high an exposure WiFi was, something not assessed by the Frei study. Also of interest is that, contrary to the primary basis for most RF restrictions (i.e. absorbed energy), the measured exposure metric was electric field (V/m). They recognise that, due to various factors, there is a large variability in individual exposures, and recommend further survey work to assess whether this is a realistic breakdown of exposure. It is becoming more and more apparent that to assess the risk of brain tumours without controlling adequately for these other sources of exposure is going to leave the results of the Interphone close to meaningless.


2. P Robertson JA et al, (August 2009) Low-frequency pulsed electromagnetic field exposure can alter neuroprocessing in humans, J R Soc Interface. 2009 Aug 5. [Epub ahead of print] [View Author's abstract conclusions] [View on Pubmed]
 

Extremely low-frequency magnetic fields (from DC to 300 Hz) have been shown to affect pain sensitivity in snails, rodents and humans. Here, a functional magnetic resonance imaging study demonstrates how the neuromodulation effect of these magnetic fields influences the processing of acute thermal pain in normal volunteers. Significant interactions were found between pre- and post-exposure activation between the sham and exposed groups for the ipsilateral (right) insula, anterior cingulate and bilateral hippocampus/caudate areas. These results show, for the first time, that the neuromodulation induced by exposure to low-intensity low-frequency magnetic fields can be observed in humans using functional brain imaging and that the detection mechanism for these effects may be different from those used by animals for orientation and navigation. Magnetoreception may be more common than presently thought.


3. P Sirav B et al, (2009) Radio frequency radiation (RFR) from TV and radio transmitters at a pilot region in Turkey, Radiat Prot Dosimetry. 2009;136(2):114-7. Epub 2009 Aug 11 [View Author's abstract conclusions] [View on Pubmed]
 

For the last 30 y, the biological effects of non-ionising radiation (NIR: 0-300 GHz) have been a major topic in bioelectromagnetism. Since the number of radiofrequency (RF) systems operating in this frequency range has shown an incredible increase over the last few decades, the dangers of exposure to the fields generated thereby has become an important public health issue. In this study, the aim was to evaluate the level of RF electromagnetic radiation in Yenimahalle Sentepe Dededoruk Hill in Ankara, Turkey that is a multiple-transmitter site hosting 64 different TV and radio towers and one base station for mobile phone communication. The site has been of interest as it is nearby a residential community. Within the technical input data available on 31 of the radio and TV transmitters, the calculated radiation level in this particular region was found to be approximately four times higher than the permitted standards of Turkey, which are the same as the ICNIRP standards. Electromagnetic field measurement is needed in the site. We are sceptical that the ICNIRP basic restrictions for whole body SAR or absorbed power have been exceeded by this value, particularly when no field measurements were taken, but it does raise the question of how excessive exposures are regulated. In the UK there few regular audits of exposure levels and no process to address excessive values if found.


4. P Eleuteri AM et al, (2009) 50 Hz extremely low frequency electromagnetic fields enhance protein carbonyl groups content in cancer cells: effects on proteasomal systems, J Biomed Biotechnol. 2009;2009:834239. Epub 2009 Aug 5 [View Author's abstract conclusions] [View on Pubmed]
 

Electromagnetic fields are an assessed cause of prolonging free radicals lifespan. This study was carried out to investigate the influence of extremely low frequency electromagnetic fields on protein oxidation and on the 20S proteasome functionality, the complex responsible for the degradation of oxidized proteins. Caco 2 cells were exposed, for 24-72 hours, to 1 mT, 50 Hz electromagnetic fields. The treatment induced a time-dependent increase both in cell growth and in protein oxidation, more evident in the presence of TPA, while no changes in cell viability were detected. Exposing the cells to 50 Hz electromagnetic fields caused a global activation of the 20S proteasome catalytic components, particularly evident at 72 hours exposure and in the presence of TPA. The finding that EGCG, a natural antioxidant compound, counteracted the field-related pro-oxidant effects demonstrates that the increased proteasome activity was due to an enhancement in intracellular free radicals. This is a relatively high magnetic field exposure, certainly a few orders of magnitude higher than the general public will ever be exposed to in daily life, but it's also supportive evidence of biological effects of ELF electromagnetic fields below ICNIRP guidance levels.


5. P Sharma VP et al, (October 2009) Mobile phone radiation inhibits Vigna radiata (mung bean) root growth by inducing oxidative stress, Sci Total Environ. 2009 Oct 15;407(21):5543-7. Epub 2009 Aug 13 [View Author's abstract conclusions] [View on Pubmed]
 

During the last couple of decades, there has been a tremendous increase in the use of cell phones. It has significantly added to the rapidly increasing EMF smog, an unprecedented type of pollution consisting of radiation in the environment, thereby prompting the scientists to study the effects on humans. However, not many studies have been conducted to explore the effects of cell phone EMFr on growth and biochemical changes in plants. We investigated whether EMFr from cell phones inhibit growth of Vigna radiata (mung bean) through induction of conventional stress responses. Effects of cell phone EMFr (power density: 8.55 µWcm-2; 900 MHz band width; for 1/2, 1, 2, and 4 h) were determined by measuring the generation of reactive oxygen species (ROS) in terms of malondialdehyde and hydrogen peroxide (H(2)O(2)) content, root oxidizability and changes in levels of antioxidant enzymes. Our results showed that cell phone EMFr significantly inhibited the germination (at > or =2 h), and radicle and plumule growths (> or =1 h) in mung bean in a time-dependent manner. Further, cell phone EMFr enhanced MDA content (indicating lipid peroxidation), and increased H(2)O(2) accumulation and root oxidizability in mung bean roots, thereby inducing oxidative stress and cellular damage. In response to EMFr, there was a significant upregulation in the activities of scavenging enzymes, such as superoxide dismutases, ascorbate peroxidases, guaiacol peroxidases, catalases and glutathione reductases, in mung bean roots. The study concluded that cell phone EMFr inhibit root growth of mung bean by inducing ROS-generated oxidative stress despite increased activities of antioxidant enzymes. Another paper hinting at non-thermal biological mechanisms, and in particular supporting the free radical mechanism found in a number of experimental models.


6. P Gajski G et al, (March 2009) Radioprotective effects of honeybee venom (Apis mellifera) against 915-MHz microwave radiation-induced DNA damage in wistar rat lymphocytes: in vitro study, Int J Toxicol. 2009 Mar-Apr;28(2):88-98 [View Author's abstract conclusions] [View on Pubmed]
 

The aim of this study is to investigate the radioprotective effect of bee venom against DNA damage induced by 915-MHz microwave radiation (specific absorption rate of 0.6 W/kg) in Wistar rats. Whole blood lymphocytes of Wistar rats are treated with 1 microg/mL bee venom 4 hours prior to and immediately before irradiation. Standard and formamidopyrimidine-DNA glycosylase (Fpg)-modified comet assays are used to assess basal and oxidative DNA damage produced by reactive oxygen species. Bee venom shows a decrease in DNA damage compared with irradiated samples. Parameters of Fpg-modified comet assay are statistically different from controls, making this assay more sensitive and suggesting that oxidative stress is a possible mechanism of DNA damage induction. Bee venom is demonstrated to have a radioprotective effect against basal and oxidative DNA damage. Furthermore, bee venom is not genotoxic and does not produce oxidative damage in the low concentrations used in this study. It's interesting that the authors made an assumption that 915-MHz RF is genotoxic, but again it's based on free radical creation, which as shown in the study above, has good support in the literature.


7. P de Tommaso M et al, (October 2009) Mobile phones exposure induces changes of contingent negative variation in humans, Neurosci Lett. 2009 Oct 23;464(2):79-83. Epub 2009 Aug 21 [View Author's abstract conclusions] [View on Pubmed]
 

Event-related potentials have been largely employed to test effects of GSM emissions on human brain. The aim of the present study was the evaluation of initial contingent negative variation (iCNV) changes, induced by 900 MHz GSM exposure, in a double blind design in healthy volunteers, subjected to a threefold experimental condition, EXPOSED (A), a real GSM phone emitting electromagnetic power, SHAM (B), a real phone where the electromagnetic power was dissipated on an internal load and OFF (C), a phone completely switched-off. Ten healthy right-handed volunteers were evaluated. The CNV was recorded during a 10 min time interval in each of the three experimental conditions A, B, and C, in order to assess the iCNV amplitude and habituation. The iCNV amplitude decreased and habituation increased during both A and B conditions, compared with condition C. This effect was diffuse over the scalp, and there was no significant prevalence of iCNV amplitude reduction on the left side, were the phones were located. Mobile Phones exposures A and B seemed to act on brain electrical activity, reducing the arousal and expectation of warning stimulus. This evidence, limited by the low number of subjects investigated, could be explained in terms of an effect induced by both the GSM signal and the extremely low frequency magnetic field produced by battery and internal circuits. This particularly interesting paper shows the importance of having a "true" sham exposure for double blind provocation studies. Many of the electrosensitivity studies (Rubin, Oftedal) have taken the assumption that a considerably lower background exposure or a exposure to different EMFs (such as ELF) should eliminate reactions in sensitive individuals. This paper, demonstrating neurological effects from a "sham" exposure done in a similar manner compared to a truly off signal, indicates that such an assumption may not be sound.


8. P Cvetkovic D, Cosic I, (October 2009) Alterations of human electroencephalographic activity caused by multiple extremely low frequency magnetic field exposures, Med Biol Eng Comput. 2009 Oct;47(10):1063-73. Epub 2009 Aug 26 [View Author's abstract conclusions] [View on Pubmed]
 

In the past, many studies have claimed that extremely low frequency (ELF) magnetic field (MF) exposures could alter the human electroencephalographic (EEG) activity. This study aims at extending our ELF pilot study to investigate whether MF exposures at ELF in series from 50, 16.66, 13, 10, 8.33 to 4 Hz could alter relative power within the corresponding EEG bands. 33 human subjects were tested under a double-blind and counter-balanced conditions. The multiple repeated three-way analysis of variance (ANOVA) mixed design (within and between-subject) analysis was employed followed by post-hoc t-tests and Bonferroni alpha-correction. The results from this study have shown that narrow alpha1 (7.5-9.5 Hz) and alpha2 (9-11 Hz) bands, associated with 8.33 and 10 Hz MF exposures, were significantly (p < 0.0005) lower than control over the temporal and parietal regions within the 10-16 min of first MF exposure session and the MF exposures were significantly higher than control of the second session MF exposure (60-65 min from the commencement of testing). Also, it was found that the beta1 (12-14 Hz) band exhibited a significant increase from before to after 13-Hz first MF exposure session at frontal region. The final outcome of our result has shown that it is possible to alter the human EEG activity of alpha and beta bands when exposed to MF at frequencies corresponding to those same bands, depending on the order and period of MF conditions. This type of EEG synchronisation of driving alpha and beta EEG by alpha and beta sinusoidal MF stimulation, demonstrated in this study, could possibly be applied as therapeutic treatment(s) of particular neurophysiological abnormalities such as sleep and psychiatric disorders.


9. - McNamee JP, Chauhan V., (September 2009) Radiofrequency radiation and gene/protein expression: a review, Radiat Res. 2009 Sep;172(3):265-87 [View Author's abstract conclusions] [View on Pubmed]
 

Mobile telecommunications have developed considerably in recent years. With the proliferation of wireless technologies, there is much public anxiety about the potential health impact associated with exposure to radiofrequency (RF) radiation from these novel products. Contradictory scientific evidence, often reported in the popular media, has further fueled public concern. Some epidemiological studies have reported that ipsilateral use of a mobile phone is associated with an increased risk for brain tumors, while other studies have reported an association between brain tumor risk and mobile phone use for longer than 10 years. However, other large epidemiological studies have failed to find similar associations. Despite the existence of national and international RF-radiation exposure guidelines, there are increasing public demands for precaution with respect to human exposure to RF radiation. Since current epidemiological evidence is insufficient to make a definitive judgment on the health risks of low-level RF radiation exposure, laboratory evidence assessing biological plausibility and theoretical mechanisms of interaction are important. A number of studies have reported that RF radiation may induce alterations in gene/protein expression in a variety of cells/tissues that may be associated with potentially harmful health outcomes, while other studies have shown no clear effects related to RF radiation. This review focuses on the current scientific evidence related to changes in protein and gene expression induced by low-level RF radiation. This paper is a broad review of a number of reported radiofrequency electromagnetic field effects, with 70 referenced papers and summary tables of the various effects. Their conclusions are broadly in line with other reviews in the area, namely that there are a number of positive and null results, and little clarity on whether the effect is likely to be genuine, nor why there is so much difference in the outcomes of the papers. It is possible that subtle experimental method / setup differences may significantly affect the outcome of the study, and at the moment too little is known about mechanisms to easily control for possible confounders.


10. - Wake K et al, (October 2009) The estimation of 3D SAR distributions in the human head from mobile phone compliance testing data for epidemiological studies, Phys Med Biol. 2009 Oct 7;54(19):5695-706. Epub 2009 Sep 1 [View Author's abstract conclusions] [View on Pubmed]
 

A worldwide epidemiological study called 'INTERPHONE' has been conducted to estimate the hypothetical relationship between brain tumors and mobile phone use. In this study, we proposed a method to estimate 3D distribution of the specific absorption rate (SAR) in the human head due to mobile phone use to provide the exposure gradient for epidemiological studies. 3D SAR distributions due to exposure to an electromagnetic field from mobile phones are estimated from mobile phone compliance testing data for actual devices. The data for compliance testing are measured only on the surface in the region near the device and in a small 3D region around the maximum on the surface in a homogeneous phantom with a specific shape. The method includes an interpolation/extrapolation and a head shape conversion. With the interpolation/extrapolation, SAR distributions in the whole head are estimated from the limited measured data. 3D SAR distributions in the numerical head models, where the tumor location is identified in the epidemiological studies, are obtained from measured SAR data with the head shape conversion by projection. Validation of the proposed method was performed experimentally and numerically. It was confirmed that the proposed method provided good estimation of 3D SAR distribution in the head, especially in the brain, which is the tissue of major interest in epidemiological studies. We conclude that it is possible to estimate 3D SAR distributions in a realistic head model from the data obtained by compliance testing measurements to provide a measure for the exposure gradient in specific locations of the brain for the purpose of exposure assessment in epidemiological studies. The proposed method has been used in several studies in the INTERPHONE.


11. P Goldwein O, Aframian DJ, (September 2009) The influence of handheld mobile phones on human parotid gland secretion, Oral Dis. 2009 Sep 8. [Epub ahead of print] [View Author's abstract conclusions] [View on Pubmed]
 

Background: Handheld mobile phones (MPHs) have become a 'cultural' accessory device, no less so than a wrist watch. Nevertheless, the use of MPHs has given rise to great concern because of possible adverse health effects from exposure to the radiofrequency radiation (RFR) emitted by the device. Previous studies suggested correlation between MPH and salivary gland tumors. Objective: To evaluate whether MPH induces physiologic changes in the adjacent parotid gland, located on the dominant side, in terms of secretion rates and protein levels in the secreted saliva. Materials and method: Stimulated parotid saliva was collected simultaneously from both glands in 50 healthy volunteers whose MPH use was on a dominant side of the head. Results: A significantly higher saliva secretion rate was noticed in the dominant MPH side compared with that in the non-dominant side. Lower total protein concentration was obtained in the dominant compared with the non-dominant MPH side among the right dominant MPH users. Conclusions: Parotid glands adjacent to handheld MPH in use respond by elevated salivary rates and decreased protein secretion reflecting the continuous insult to the glands. This phenomenon should be revealed to the worldwide population and further exploration by means of large-scale longitudinal studies is warranted. The evidence on parotid gland tumours with regards to mobile phone exposure is limited and conflicting, although some (such as Sadetski 2008) have found strong associations. This is the first paper we are aware of assessing salivary gland activity, and is subsequently the first positive result. As they identify in their conclusions, this work should be followed up, as it is further evidence that mobile phone generated radiofrequency electromagnetic fields are interacting biologically in ways we don't understand.


12. - Dolan M, Rowley J, (September 2009) The precautionary principle in the context of mobile phone and base station radiofrequency exposures, Environ Health Perspect. 2009 Sep;117(9):1329-32. Epub 2009 May 18 [View Author's abstract conclusions] [View on Pubmed]
 

BACKGROUND: No health hazard has been established from exposure to radiofrequency fields up to the levels recommended by the International Commission on Non-Ionizing Radiation Protection. However, in response to public concern and the perceived level of scientific uncertainty, there are continuing calls for the application of the precautionary principle to radiofrequency exposures from mobile phones and base stations. OBJECTIVE: We examined the international evolution of calls for precautionary measures in relation to mobile phones and base stations, with particular focus on Australia and the United Kingdom. RESULTS: The precautionary principle is difficult to define, and there is no widespread agreement as to how it should be implemented. However, there is a strong argument that precautionary measures should not be implemented in the absence of reliable scientific data and logical reasoning pointing to a possible health hazard. There is also experimental evidence that precautionary advice may increase public concern. CONCLUSION: We argue that conservative exposure standards, technical features that minimize unnecessary exposures, ongoing research, regular review of standards, and availability of consumer information make mobile communications inherently precautionary. Commonsense measures can be adopted by individuals, governments, and industry to address public concern while ensuring that mobile networks are developed for the benefit of society. Although written by the Mobile Operator's Association, and thus inclined to consider the evidence on phones currently insufficient (as in line with their official stance), it works as a good summary of the reasoning and justification behind the way the precautionary principle is defined and applied. The principles of not publicly acting without evidence is sound, as is the lack of precautionary action in the absence of data, however, we disagree that the mobile communication industry is inherently precautionary, and we disagree that the evidence thus far doesn't warrant some more substantial precautionary action and policy.


13. N Barth A et al, (April 2010) Effects of extremely low-frequency magnetic field exposure on cognitive functions: results of a meta-analysis, Bioelectromagnetics. 2010 Apr;31(3):173-9 [View Author's abstract conclusions] [View on Pubmed]
 

There is extensive literature on possible effects of extremely low-frequency magnetic fields (ELF-MFs) on human cognitive functions. However, due to methodological deficits (e.g., low statistical power, small sample sizes) findings have been inconsistent. In the current study we try to overcome these problems by carrying out a meta-analysis. Literature research revealed 17 studies. Nine of these were included in the meta-analysis because they fulfilled minimum requirements (e.g., at least single-blind experimental study design and documentation of means and standard deviation of the dependent variables). All of the studies used a 50 Hz magnetic field exposure. Small but significant effect sizes could be detected in two cognitive dimensions: in the hard level of visual duration discrimination, task-exposed subjects performed better than controls; at the intermediate level however, exposed subjects performed worse. Additionally, a significant improvement of correct responses was observed in the dimension of "flexibility" under exposure. However, due to the small number of studies per performance dimensions and the resulting instability of estimates, these findings have to be treated with extreme caution. Taken together, the results of the meta-analysis provide little evidence that ELF-MFs have any effects on cognitive functions.


14. P Albanese A et al, (2009) Alterations in adenylate kinase activity in human PBMCs after in vitro exposure to electromagnetic field: comparison between extremely low frequency electromagnetic field (ELF) and therapeutic application of a musically modulated electromagnetic fiel, J Biomed Biotechnol. 2009;2009:717941. Epub 2009 Sep 16 [View Author's abstract conclusions] [View on Pubmed]
 

This study investigated the effects of electromagnetic fields on enzymes involved in purine metabolism in human peripheral blood mononuclear cells in vitro. Cells were obtained from 20 volunteers. We tested both low-energy, extremely low frequency (ELF; 100-Hz) electromagnetic fields and the Therapeutic Application of Musically Modulated Electromagnetic Fields (TAMMEFs); the latter is characterized by variable frequencies, intensities, and wave shapes. Adenylate kinase activity was increased after ELF field exposure but decreased slightly after TAMMEF exposure. Neither of the two electromagnetic field affected the activities of the purine metabolism enzymes ecto-5'-nucleotidase, adenosine deaminase, and adenosine kinase. We concluded that ELF fields may influence cellular electrical charge stability; stimulation of adenylate kinase activity could restore the cell to a state of equilibrium. In contrast, TAMMEF fields may be useful for maintaining and regulating the cellular electrical charge.


15. - Jahandideh S et al, (February 2010) Comparing performances of logistic regression and neural networks for predicting melatonin excretion patterns in the rat exposed to ELF magnetic fields, Bioelectromagnetics. 2010 Feb;31(2):164-71 [View Author's abstract conclusions] [View on Pubmed]
 

Various studies have been reported on the bioeffects of magnetic field exposure; however, no consensus or guideline is available for experimental designs relating to exposure conditions as yet. In this study, logistic regression (LR) and artificial neural networks (ANNs) were used in order to analyze and predict the melatonin excretion patterns in the rat exposed to extremely low frequency magnetic fields (ELF-MF). Subsequently, on a database containing 33 experiments, performances of LR and ANNs were compared through resubstitution and jackknife tests. Predictor variables were more effective parameters and included frequency, polarization, exposure duration, and strength of magnetic fields. Also, five performance measures including accuracy, sensitivity, specificity, Matthew's Correlation Coefficient (MCC) and normalized percentage, better than random (S) were used to evaluate the performance of models. The LR as a conventional model obtained poor prediction performance. Nonetheless, LR distinguished the duration of magnetic fields as a statistically significant parameter. Also, horizontal polarization of magnetic fields with the highest logit coefficient (or parameter estimate) with negative sign was found to be the strongest indicator for experimental designs relating to exposure conditions. This means that each experiment with horizontal polarization of magnetic fields has a higher probability to result in "not changed melatonin level" pattern. On the other hand, ANNs, a more powerful model which has not been introduced in predicting melatonin excretion patterns in the rat exposed to ELF-MF, showed high performance measure values and higher reliability, especially obtaining 0.55 value of MCC through jackknife tests. Obtained results showed that such predictor models are promising and may play a useful role in defining guidelines for experimental designs relating to exposure conditions. In conclusion, analysis of the bioelectromagnetic data could result in finding a relationship between electromagnetic fields and different biological processes.


16. P Lopez-Martin E et al, (May 2009) The action of pulse-modulated GSM radiation increases regional changes in brain activity and c-Fos expression in cortical and subcortical areas in a rat model of picrotoxin-induced seizure proneness, J Neurosci Res. 2009 May 1;87(6):1484-99 [View Author's abstract conclusions] [View on Pubmed]
 

The action of the pulse-modulated GSM radiofrequency of mobile phones has been suggested as a physical phenomenon that might have biological effects on the mammalian central nervous system. In the present study, GSM-exposed picrotoxin-pretreated rats showed differences in clinical and EEG signs, and in c-Fos expression in the brain, with respect to picrotoxin-treated rats exposed to an equivalent dose of unmodulated radiation. Neither radiation treatment caused tissue heating, so thermal effects can be ruled out. The most marked effects of GSM radiation on c-Fos expression in picrotoxin-treated rats were observed in limbic structures, olfactory cortex areas and subcortical areas, the dentate gyrus, and the central lateral nucleus of the thalamic intralaminar nucleus group. Nonpicrotoxin-treated animals exposed to unmodulated radiation showed the highest levels of neuronal c-Fos expression in cortical areas. These results suggest a specific effect of the pulse modulation of GSM radiation on brain activity of a picrotoxin-induced seizure-proneness rat model and indicate that this mobile-phone-type radiation might induce regional changes in previous preexcitability conditions of neuronal activation.


17. P Cao Y et al, (2009) 900-MHz Microwave Radiation Enhances gamma-Ray Adverse Effects on SHG44 Cells, J Toxicol Environ Health A. 2009;72(11-12):727-32 [View Author's abstract conclusions] [View on Pubmed]
 

Mobile phones are widely used globally. However, the biological effects due to exposure to electromagnetic fields (EMF) produced by mobile phones are largely unknown. Environmental and occupational exposure of humans to gamma-rays is a biologically relevant phenomenon. Consequently studies were undertaken to examine the interactions between gamma-rays and EMF on human health. In this study, exposure to 900-MHz EMF expanded gamma-ray damage to SHG44 cells. Preexposure EMF enhanced the decrease in cell proliferation induced by gamma-ray irradiation and the rate of apoptosis. The combination of EMF and gamma-ray exposure resulted in a synergistic effect by triggering stress response, which increased reactive oxygen species, but the expression of hsp70 at both mRNA and protein levels remained unaltered. Data indicate that the adverse effects of gamma-rays on cellular functions are strengthened by EMF.


18. N Masuda H et al, (July 2009) Effects of 915 MHz electromagnetic-field radiation in TEM cell on the blood-brain barrier and neurons in the rat brain, Radiat Res. 2009 Jul;172(1):66-73 [View Author's abstract conclusions] [View on Pubmed]
 

The aim of this study was to determine whether albumin leakage and dark neurons were present in rat brains 14 and 50 days after a single 2-h exposure to a 915 MHz electromagnetic field, as reported by Salford et al. (Environ. Health Perspect. 111, 881-883, 203). Sixty-four male F344 rats (12 weeks old) were exposed to a 915 MHz electromagnetic field at whole-body average specific absorption rates of 0, 0.02, 0.2 and 2.0 W/kg in TEM cells for 2 h, following the protocol reported by Salford et al. The brains were examined histologically and immunohistochemically. No albumin immunoreactivity was observed in the exposed groups. In addition, dark neurons, assessed using hematoxylin and eosin staining, were rarely present, with no statistically significant difference between exposed and sham-exposed animals. This study thus failed to confirm the results of Salford et al. This is one of two fairly recent attempts to replicate the blood brain barrier work of Leif Salford and his team from Lund university, both of which failed to produce positive results. We have contacted Leif Salford regarding the accuracy of the replication of his protocol, and will see if we can get permission to publish his reponse.


19. - Cardis E et al, (June 2008) Distribution of RF energy emitted by mobile phones in anatomical structures of the brain, Phys Med Biol. 2008 Jun 7;53(11):2771-83. Epub 2008 May 1 [View Author's abstract conclusions] [View on Pubmed]
 

The rapid worldwide increase in mobile phone use in the last decade has generated considerable interest in possible carcinogenic effects of radio frequency (RF). Because exposure to RF from phones is localized, if a risk exists it is likely to be greatest for tumours in regions with greatest energy absorption. The objective of the current paper was to characterize the spatial distribution of RF energy in the brain, using results of measurements made in two laboratories on 110 phones used in Europe or Japan. Most (97-99% depending on frequency) appears to be absorbed in the brain hemisphere on the side where the phone is used, mainly (50-60%) in the temporal lobe. The average relative SAR is highest in the temporal lobe (6-15%, depending on frequency, of the spatial peak SAR in the most exposed region of the brain) and the cerebellum (2-10%) and decreases very rapidly with increasing depth, particularly at higher frequencies. The SAR distribution appears to be fairly similar across phone models, between older and newer phones and between phones with different antenna types and positions. Analyses of risk by location of tumour are therefore important for the interpretation of results of studies of brain tumours in relation to mobile phone use. This paper, another published by researchers involved in the INTERPHONE project, provides some useful additional information on brain exposure from mobile use. Interestingly, with the temporal lobe taking such a high proportion of the dose, if the brain tumour incidence rates do start increasing in the next few years, we would expect to see the majority of the increase to be in temporal lobe tumours if it is due to excessive mobile phone usage.


20. P Mailankot M et al, (2009) Radio frequency electromagnetic radiation (RF-EMR) from GSM (0.9/1.8GHz) mobile phones induces oxidative stress and reduces sperm motility in rats, Clinics (Sao Paulo). 2009;64(6):561-5 [View Author's abstract conclusions] [View on Pubmed]
 

INTRODUCTION: Mobile phones have become indispensable in the daily lives of men and women around the globe. As cell phone use has become more widespread, concerns have mounted regarding the potentially harmful effects of RF-EMR from these devices. OBJECTIVE: The present study was designed to evaluate the effects of RF-EMR from mobile phones on free radical metabolism and sperm quality. MATERIALS AND METHODS: Male albino Wistar rats (10-12 weeks old) were exposed to RF-EMR from an active GSM (0.9/1.8 GHz) mobile phone for 1 hour continuously per day for 28 days. Controls were exposed to a mobile phone without a battery for the same period. The phone was kept in a cage with a wooden bottom in order to address concerns that the effects of exposure to the phone could be due to heat emitted by the phone rather than to RF-EMR alone. Animals were sacrificed 24 hours after the last exposure and tissues of interest were harvested. RESULTS: One hour of exposure to the phone did not significantly change facial temperature in either group of rats. No significant difference was observed in total sperm count between controls and RF-EMR exposed groups. However, rats exposed to RF-EMR exhibited a significantly reduced percentage of motile sperm. Moreover, RF-EMR exposure resulted in a significant increase in lipid peroxidation and low GSH content in the testis and epididymis. CONCLUSION: Given the results of the present study, we speculate that RF-EMR from mobile phones negatively affects semen quality and may impair male fertility. Another strongly significant experiment demonstrating the effect of GSM radiation on sperm and fertility, this time involving rats. The evidence base for an association between RF and fertility is getting stronger and stronger now - many of the papers are individually not strong enough to draw any solid conclusions from, but they number of papers is building up and they are almost universally significantly positive.