To clarify whether radiofrequency exposure at a SAR value comparable to that related to mobile phone irradiation is able to affect in vitro activation in human lymphocytes from 10 young and 8 elderly donors. Specifically CD25, CD95, and CD28 molecules on CD4+ helper and CD8+ cytotoxic T lymphocytes with and without mitogenic stimulation (anti-CD3 monoclonal antibody) were investigated.
Human T lymphocytes are affected by age and during age the two major subsets (CD4+ and CD8+ cells) change their ratio, their activity, and their phenotype.
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 duration||intermittent, 10 min on/20 min off for 44 h|
|Additional info||Reference article: Carpi, M., E.Scarcella, E.Bianchi, et al. 2004 b. 1800 MHz radiofrequency (mobile phones, different global system for mobile phone communication modulations) does not affect apoptosis and heat shock protein 70 level in peripheral blood mononuclear cells from young donors. Int.J.Radiat.Biol. 80: 389 - 397.|
No significant changes in the percentage of these cell subsets were found between exposed and sham-exposed lymphocytes in both young and elderly donors.
Nevertheless, after radiofrequency exposure a slight, but significant, downregulation of CD95 expression in stimulated CD4+ T lymphocytes from elderly, but not from young donors was revealed. This age-related result is given the importance of a such molecule in regulation of the immune response. On the basis of such data the authors hypothesize that radiofrequency exposure could decrease the susceptibility to fas-induced apoptosis in elderly subjects (the fas gene encodes one of several proteins important to apoptosis).