Study type: Medical/biological study (experimental study)

Effects of weak electromagnetic irradiation on various types of behavior in the mealworm Tenebrio molitor. med./bio.

Published in: Neurosci Behav Physiol 2010; 40 (8): 863-868

Aim of study (acc. to author)

To study the effects of weak electromagnetic fields on simple forms of behavior using Tenebrio molitor beetles.

Background/further details

Each experiment consisted of 5-10 exposed groups and 5-10 control groups (each group = 10 beetles). One trial per day was performed with each group of beetles for five days. Each experiment was repeated 4-5 times at different times of the year.



Exposure Parameters
Exposure 1: 36 GHz
Exposure duration: continuous for 15 min

Exposure 1

Main characteristics
Frequency 36 GHz
Exposure duration continuous for 15 min
Exposure setup
Exposure source
Distance between exposed object and exposure source 15 cm
Setup beetles exposed on the day before or immediately before the behavior experiments
Sham exposure A sham exposure was conducted.
Measurand Value Type Method Mass Remarks
power density 100 µW/cm² - - - -

Exposed system:

Methods Endpoint/measurement parameters/methodology

Investigated system:
Time of investigation:
  • after exposure

Main outcome of study (acc. to author)

All groups showed an initial orientation reaction which was followed by an adaptation to the apparatus during the last days of the experiment (decreased reaction time). Exposure to weak electromagnetic irradiation led to increases in the reaction times at the initial days of the experiments (during orientation reaction), but had no effect on subsequent adaptation. The effects of irradiation were seasonal in nature and differed in the two types of behaviour (the effects were weaker in negative phototaxis reactions than in food-related behaviour).

Study character:

Study funded by

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