Study type: Medical/biological study (experimental study)

Turning on stem cell cardiogenesis with extremely low frequency magnetic fields med./bio.

Published in: FASEB J 2005; 19 (1): 155-157

Aim of study (acc. to author)

To study whether magnetic field may be able to trigger prodynorphin gene expression in embryonic stem cells and whether, if yes, magnetic fields may commit these cells to the specification of a cardiac lineage.

Background/further details

In a previous study (see publication 3965) it was shown that exposure to extremely low frequency magnetic field increased the expression of prodynorphin gene in adult rat ventricular cardiomyocytes. This effect was associated with the synthesis and secretion of dynorphin B. Dynorphin B seems to prime cardiac differentiation in embryonal carcinoma cells and the dynorphinergic system seems to act as a major conductor of cardiogenesis in multipotent embryonic stem cells.
The work is part of the REFLEX project (Risk Evaluation of Potential Environmental Hazards From Low Energy Electromagnetic Field Exposure Using Sensitive in vitro Methods), funded by the European Union.



Exposure Parameters
Exposure 1: 50 Hz
Exposure duration: continuous for 3 or 10 days

Exposure 1

Main characteristics
Frequency 50 Hz
Exposure duration continuous for 3 or 10 days
Exposure setup
Exposure source
Setup 4 coaxial coils placed horizontally in a commercial CO2 incubator, hence the axis parallel to the surface of the culture well plates. Coils were set-up in wound or counter wound configuration for active or sham exposure, respectively.
Measurand Value Type Method Mass Remarks
magnetic flux density 0.8 mT effective value unspecified - -

Exposed system:

Methods Endpoint/measurement parameters/methodology

Investigated system:
Time of investigation:
  • after exposure

Main outcome of study (acc. to author)

Exposure of mouse embryonic stem cells to extremely low frequency magnetic fields triggered the expression of GATA-4 and Nkx-2.5. Magnetic fields also enhanced prodynorphin gene expression, and the synthesis and secretion of dynorphin B.
These effects occurred at the transcriptional level and ultimately ensued into a remarkable increase in the yield of embryonic stem cell-derived cardiomyocytes.
These data demonstrate the potential use of magnetic fields for modifying the gene program of cardiac differentiation in embryonic stem cells and may pave the way for novel approaches in tissue engineering and cell therapy.

Study character:

Study funded by

Related articles