Study type: Medical/biological study (experimental study)

Influence of pre- and postnatal exposure of rats to 2.45-GHz microwave radiation on neurobehavioral function. med./bio.

Published in: Bioelectromagnetics 1986; 7 (1): 57-71

Aim of study (acc. to author)

To study systematically the effects of prenatal and perinatal exposure to 2450 MHz (CW) microwaves as indexed by a battery of neurobehavioral tests that evaluate a wide range of sensory and motor functions.

Background/further details

Rats were exposed to microwaves prenatally (2450 MHz, 10 mW/cm², 3 h/day, days 5-20 of gestation) or perinatally (same as above plus days 2-20 postnatally) and were examined on postnatal days 30 and 100.



Exposure Parameters
Exposure 1: 2.45 GHz
Modulation type: CW
Exposure duration: 3 h/day (days 5-20 of gestation plus days 2-20 postnatal)

Exposure 1

Main characteristics
Frequency 2.45 GHz
Exposure duration 3 h/day (days 5-20 of gestation plus days 2-20 postnatal)
Modulation type CW
Exposure setup
Exposure source
Chamber environmental chamber; grid cage 15,5x8,5x5cm lxwxd (prenatal) and 10x6x5cm (neonatal), cages separated 15 cm
Measurand Value Type Method Mass Remarks
power density 100 W/m² mean measured - -
SAR 2 W/kg mean estimated cf. remarks at 10 mW/cm² for fetus
power density 114 W/m² peak value cf. remarks - in center of empty cage 8,5-11,4 mW/cm²

Exposed system:

Methods Endpoint/measurement parameters/methodology

Investigated system:
Time of investigation:
  • after exposure

Main outcome of study (acc. to author)

The prenatally and the perinatally exposed animals weighted more than sham-exposed rats at 30, but not at 100, days of age. In addition, the perinatally exposed rats had less swimming endurance at 30, but not at 100, days of age relative to sham-exposed animals.
For the other measures, only the air-puff startle response was altered and was limited to the prenatally irradiated female pups; ie, at postnatal day 30, the startle response was increased in magnitude, and at postnatal day 100, the response was decreased. No other reliable effects were found.
In a second replication experiment, rats treated as described above were examined at postnatal days 30-36. Again, perinatally exposed animals were larger in body mass and had less swimming endurance compared with sham-exposed rats. The latency to the air-puff startle response was longer in female pups irradiated prenatally.
These results indicate that altered endurance and gross motor activity result from perinatal exposure to microwaves.

Study character:

Study funded by

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