Study type: Medical/biological study (experimental study)

Exposure to 900 MHz electromagnetic field induces an unbalance between pro-apoptotic and pro-survival signals in T-lymphoblastoid leukemia CCRF-CEM cells med./bio.

Published in: J Cell Physiol 2004; 198 (2): 324-332

Aim of study (acc. to author)

To inverstigate the effect of unmodulated high-frequency electromagnetic field at various exposure times on in vitro survival of cultured acute human T-lymphoblastoid leukemia cells.



Exposure Parameters
Exposure 1: 900 MHz
Modulation type: CW
Exposure duration: continuous for 2, 4, 12, 24, and 48 h

Exposure 1

Main characteristics
Frequency 900 MHz
  • guided field
Exposure duration continuous for 2, 4, 12, 24, and 48 h
Additional info Stuchly MA, Stuchly SS, 1996. Experimental radio and microwave dosimetry. In: Polk C, Postow E, editors. Biological effects of electromagnetic fields. New York: CRC press, Inc. pp 295-336.
Modulation type CW
Exposure setup
Exposure source
Chamber The TEM cell placed inside an incubator (37°C, 95% humidity and 5% CO2) was a 3 mm copper box of 19.25 x 20 x 50 cm with a tapered horizontal copper septum dividing the inner space into two equal parts. To allow gaseous exchange between the incubator and the cell cultures, one side of TEM wall was made of a 2.5-mm size copper-mesh. The geometry and field propagation have been well described in literature [Stuchly and Stuchly, 1996]. The electric field was perpendicular to the septum plane.
Setup Five Petri dishes of 10 cm diameter containing 20 ml of medium were placed in the TEM cell at 1 cm distance above and below the septum.
Sham exposure A sham exposure was conducted.
Additional info Continuous temperature monitoring detected no more than 0.15°C of difference. Sham exposure was performed for 2, 24, and 48 h comparing cells inside and outside the TEM cell.
Measurand Value Type Method Mass Remarks
electric field strength 2.96 V/m - measured - -
magnetic field strength 8 mA/m - measured - -
power density 23.68 mW/m² - - - -
SAR 3.5 mW/kg - - - -

Exposed system:

Methods Endpoint/measurement parameters/methodology

Investigated system:
Time of investigation:
  • after exposure

Main outcome of study (acc. to author)

At short time exposure (2-12 h) early activation of both p53-dependend and independend apoptotic pathways, and an induction of DNA breaks were observed.
In contrast, long time exposure (24-48 h) leads to the activation of pro-survival Ras pathways and an increased DNA synthesis.
These findings suggest that 900 MHz EMF exposure is capable to induce genotoxic damage and changes in gene expression.

Study character:

Study funded by

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