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Medical/biological study (experimental study)

Upregulation of specific mRNA levels in rat brain after cell phone exposure.

Published in: Electromagn Biol Med 2008; 27 (2): 147-154

Aim of study (acc. to author)

To check the hypothesis that cell phone irradiation can cause cellular damage to the rat brain leading to increased mRNA transcription of injury-associated proteins.
Background/further details: Fourteen 3-month-old male adult rats, weighing 250 to 350 g, were used.

Endpoint

Exposure

Exposure Parameters
Exposure 1: 1.9 GHz
Exposure duration: repeated daily exposure, 2 x 3 h/day, for 18 weeks
Exposure 1
Main characteristics
Frequency 1.9 GHz
Type
Exposure duration repeated daily exposure, 2 x 3 h/day, for 18 weeks
Modulation
Modulation type unspecified
Exposure setup
Exposure source
Distance between exposed object and exposure source 1 cm
Chamber The rats were placed in holding units consisting of ventilated 5.1 cm x 15.2 cm PVC tubes fitted with 0.59-liter clear plastic bottle tops on one end and common 7.6-cm bolts with nuts at the other end. As the rats grew larger, new units were made using 8.9-cm PVC tubes, 1-liter bottles, and 10.2-cm bolts with nuts.
Setup Each cell phone was positioned 1 cm from the head of the rats, at equal distances between two rats in holding chambers.
Sham exposure A sham exposure was conducted.
Additional info Rats were exposed for 3 hours, followed by a 30-minute rest period outside of the tubes and a second exposure for 3 more hours per day.
Parameters
Measurand Value Type Method Mass Remarks
SAR 1.8 W/kg - measured - AMPS
SAR 0.9 W/kg - measured - CELL
SAR 1.18 W/kg - measured - PCS
Additional parameter details
The four cell phones used in the study had a PCS CDMA frequency band of 1.9 GHz (800 MHz digital and 800 MHz analog) and three different modes (AMPS mode, CELL mode, and PCS mode) that can be used based on signal reception, antenna use, and other factors associated with reception of different types of RF signals. The actual exposure is not specified in the article.
Measurement and calculation details
The SAR was measured at a distance of 2.2 cm.
Exposed system:

Methods Endpoint/measurement parameters/methodology

Investigated material:
Investigated organ system:
Time of investigation:
  • after exposure

Main outcome of study (acc. to author)

A statistically significant mRNA up-regulation of all investigated injury-associated proteins in the brains of rats exposed to cell phone irradiation was found. The differences in temperature measured were not statistically sinificant.
The authors conclude that relative chronic exposure to cell phone microwave irradiation may result in cumulative injuries that could eventually lead to clinically significant neurological damage.
Study character:

Study funded by

  • not stated/no funding

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