Study type: Medical/biological study (experimental study)

Effect of extremely low frequency electromagnetic fields on growth rate and morphology of bacteria med./bio.

Published in: Int J Radiat Biol 2011; 87 (12): 1155-1161

Aim of study (acc. to author)

To study the effect of extremely low frequency electromagnetic fields on the growth rate of gram-positive and gram-negative bacteria and to determine any morphological changes that might have been caused by exposure.



Exposure Parameters
Exposure 1: 50 Hz
Exposure duration: continuous for up to 6 h

Exposure 1

Main characteristics
Frequency 50 Hz
Exposure duration continuous for up to 6 h
Exposure setup
Exposure source
Setup Helmholtz coils with an inner diameter of 20 cm and 400 turns of copper wire positioned parallel to the ground; 15 ml falcon tube containing culture medium of 1 cm height centered in the vertical axis of the coil system; exposure system placed in an incubator
Sham exposure A sham exposure was conducted.
Measurand Value Type Method Mass Remarks
magnetic flux density 0.5 mT - measured - +/- 0.05 mT

Exposed system:

Methods Endpoint/measurement parameters/methodology

Investigated system:
Time of investigation:
  • during exposure
  • after exposure

Main outcome of study (acc. to author)

A decrease in growth rate was found for all bacterial strains during extremely low frequency electromagnetic field exposure compared with control samples. The decrease in growth rate persisted following exposure. Significant ultrastructural changes were observed in all exposed bacterial strains (e.g. disintegration of the cell wall, retraction of the cytoplasmic membrane from the cell wall, cell wall enlargement, cytoplasmic changes).
The data showed that extremely low frequency electromagnetic fields induce a decrease in growth rate and morphological changes for both gram-negative and gram-positive bacteria.

Study character:

Study funded by

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