Study type: Medical/biological study (experimental study)

Micronucleus induction in cells co-exposed in vitro to 50 Hz magnetic field and benzene, 1,4-benzenediol (hydroquinone) or 1,2,4-benzenetriol. med./bio.

Published in: Toxicol In Vitro 2003; 17 (5-6): 581-586

Aim of study (acc. to author)

The genotoxic effects of co-exposure of Jurkat cells to a 50 Hz magnetic field and benzene and its metabolites should be investigated.

Background/further details

Benzene is known to cause leukemia. However, it is unlikely to be the ultimate carcinogen and therefore its metabolites hydroquinone and 1,2,4-benzenetriol were investigated as well.
Cells were divided into the following groups: 1) exposure to the magnetic field, 2) exposure to benzene, 3) exposure to hydroquinone, 4) exposure 1,2,4-benzenetriol, 5-7) co-exposure to the magnetic field and benzene, hydroquinone or 1,2,4-benzenetriol, respectively. For each group, a respective sham exposure group was used (remark EMF-Portal: a control group is mentioned as well but no details are given and no results are stated for it). Each group was investigated after 1 and 24 hours of exposure, respectively.
Results were obtained in three independent experiments. Positive controls and negative controls were conducted.

Endpoint

Exposure

Exposure Parameters
Exposure 1: 50 Hz
Exposure duration: continuous for 1 hour
Exposure 2: 50 Hz
Exposure duration: continuous for 24 hours

Exposure 1

Main characteristics
Frequency 50 Hz
Type
Waveform
Exposure duration continuous for 1 hour
Exposure setup
Exposure source
Chamber dry CO2-incubator (37°C, 5% CO2)
Setup cells in test tubes (16 mm diameter and 100 mm length) were placed in the center of the induction coils (1000 turns of copper wire (0.66 mm diameter) around a scaffold of non-ferromagnetic matter, resulting in an inside diameter of 22 mm, an outside diameter of 38 mm, and a length of 60 mm); each induction coil was enclosed in a mantle of ferromagnetic steel to prevent EMF interference with other coils; current through coils was 0.25 A; magnetic field was parallel to the axis of the test tube and homogeneous; temperature during experiments was (37°C ± 0.3°C)
Sham exposure A sham exposure was conducted.
Parameters
Measurand Value Type Method Mass Remarks
magnetic flux density 5 mT - measured and calculated - -

Exposure 2

Main characteristics
Frequency 50 Hz
Type
Waveform
Exposure duration continuous for 24 hours
Exposure setup
Exposure source
Sham exposure A sham exposure was conducted.
Parameters
Measurand Value Type Method Mass Remarks
magnetic flux density 5 mT - measured and calculated - -

Reference articles

  • Antonopoulos A et al. (1995): Cytological effects of 50 Hz electromagnetic fields on human lymphocytes in vitro.
  • Rosenthal M et al. (1989): Effects of 50 Hertz electromagnetic fields on proliferation and on chromosomal alterations in human peripheral lymphocytes untreated or pretreated with chemical mutagens.

Exposed system:

Methods Endpoint/measurement parameters/methodology

Investigated system:
Time of investigation:
  • after exposure

Main outcome of study (acc. to author)

After 24 hours, cells exposed to the magnetic field (group 1) or to benzene (group 2) alone showed significantly more DNA damages than their respective sham exposure groups.
Exposure to hydroquinone (group 3) or 1,2,4-benzenetriol (group 4) resulted in significantly increased DNA damage after 1 and 24 hours compared to their sham exposure groups. Co-exposure to the magnetic field did not influence the effects of benzene or its metabolites (groups 5-7).
The authors conclude the benzene metabolites hydroquinone and 1,2,4-benzenetriol as well as the 50 Hz magnetic field might have a genotoxic effect on Jurkat cells.

Study character:

Study funded by

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