Medical/biological study (experimental study)

Mobile phone radiation inhibits Vigna radiata (mung bean) root growth by inducing oxidative stress.

Published in: Sci Total Environ 2009; 407 (21): 5543-5547

Aim of study (acc. to author)

To study whether electromagnetic fields from cell phones inhibit growth of mung bean (Vigna radiata) through induction of stress responses.
Background/further details: 50 seeds were exposed and 50 seeds were sham-exposed. After exposure, seeds were allowed to germinate in Petri dishes for 48 h.



Exposure Parameters
Exposure 1: 900 MHz
Modulation type: pulsed
Exposure duration: continuous for 0.5 h, 1 h, 2 hr, 4 hr
Exposure 1
Main characteristics
Frequency 900 MHz
Exposure duration continuous for 0.5 h, 1 h, 2 hr, 4 hr
Modulation type pulsed
Repetition frequency 217 Hz
Exposure setup
Exposure source
Distance between exposed object and exposure source 8 cm
Chamber 26 cm x 47.5 cm x 17.5 cm closed shielded chamber acting as Faraday cage; all walls layered with 2 mm thick aluminum
Setup two GSM mobile phones positioned each at one end of the chamber; seeds placed between them; phones used in talk mode
Sham exposure A sham exposure was conducted.
Measurand Value Type Method Mass Remarks
power density density 8.55 µW/cm² average over time measured - -
electric field strength 5.7 V/m - - - -
Exposed system:

Methods Endpoint/measurement parameters/methodology

Investigated material:
Time of investigation:
  • after exposure

Main outcome of study (acc. to author)

The data showed that cell phone electromagnetic field exposure significantly inhibited the germination (at ≥2 h), and radicle and plumule growths (≥1 h) in mung bean in a time-dependent manner. Furthermore, exposure enhanced malondialdehyde content (indicating lipid peroxidation), and increased hydrogen peroxide cumulation and root oxidizability in mung bean roots (inducing oxidative stress and cellular damage). Under exposure, there was also a significant upregulation in the enzyme activities of scavenging enzymes in the roots.
The authors conclude that cell phone electromagnetic field exposure inhibit root growth of mung bean by inducing reactive oxygen species-generated oxidative stress despite increased enzyme activities of antioxidant enzymes.
Study character:

Study funded by

  • not stated/no funding

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