Medical/biological study (experimental study)

GSM 900 MHz cellular phone radiation can either stimulate or depress early embryogenesis in Japanese quails depending on the duration of exposure.

Published in: Int J Radiat Biol 2013; 89 (9): 756-763

Aim of study (acc. to author)

To examine the effects of mobile phone-exposure (GSM) on the early embryogenesis in japanese quails.
Background/further details: Four groups of fertilized eggs were examined (n=10-12 per group): 1.) control group, 38 h brooding, 2.) exposed during 38 h brooding, 3.) control group, 120 h at room temperature, then 38 h brooding (158 h in total) and 4.) exposed during 120 h at room temperature, then during 38 h brooding (158 h in total). Brooding took place in incubators (38°C). Control groups and exposure groups were brooded at the same time, however the control eggs were shielded against the electromagnetic fields by 6 layers of aluminium foil.

Endpoint

Exposure

Exposure Parameters
Exposure 1: 890–915 Hz
Exposure duration: intermittent for 38 h: 48 sec "on" (speech mode), 12 sec "off"
Exposure 2: 890–915 MHz
Exposure duration: intermittent for 158 h (120 h before and 38 h during brooding): 48 sec "on" (speech mode), 12 sec "off"
Exposure 1
Main characteristics
Frequency 890–915 Hz
Type
Exposure duration intermittent for 38 h: 48 sec "on" (speech mode), 12 sec "off"
Exposure setup
Exposure source/structure
Chamber details laboratory incubator (metal covers from the door and the sides removed and replaced by plastic covers); temperature 38.3±0.2°C, relative humidity 60%
Setup details eggs placed on horizontal trays; cell phone positioned on a plastic stand inside the incubator at a distance of 3 cm from the eggs; unexposed eggs placed inside the same incubator at a distance of 10 cm from the exposed eggs and shielded by 6 layer of an aluminum foil (each foil was 0.03 mm thick); cell phone kept in connecting mode by auto-redial; each connecting attempt lasted 48 s; distance between the phone and the eggs: 3 cm - 10 cm
Parameters
Measurand Value Type Method Remarks
power density density 2.5 mW/m² mean - on the egg surface
electric field strength 0.02 V/m - calculated inside the egg
SAR 3 µW/kg - calculated -
Additional parameter details
background RF in the laboratory was 0.001 µW/cm² (100 - 3000 MHz); aluminum foil shield ensured near-the-background level of RF irradiation (0.002 µW/cm²)
Exposure 2
Main characteristics
Frequency 890–915 MHz
Exposure duration intermittent for 158 h (120 h before and 38 h during brooding): 48 sec "on" (speech mode), 12 sec "off"
Exposure setup
Exposure source/structure
Setup details exposure during the first 120 h on a lab bench at room temperature
Parameters
Measurand Value Type Method Remarks
power density density 2.5 mW/m² mean - on the egg surface
electric field strength 0.02 V/m - calculated inside the egg
SAR 3 µW/kg - calculated -
Exposed system:
  • animal
  • whole body: in ovo
  • Japanese quail (Coturnix coturnix japonica)

Methods Endpoint/measurement parameters/methodology

Investigated material:

Main outcome of study (acc. to author)

No malformations in the embryos occurred and no differences in the surface temperature of the eggs were found between the groups.
In the 38 hours-exposed group, a significant increased number of differentiated somites was observed in comparison to the corresponding control group. Additionally, DNA strand breaks were significantly decreased compared to the control group. An exposure for 158 hours significantly decreased the number of differentiated somites and resulted in a significant increase of DNA strand breaks compared to the control group.
The authors conclude that mobile phone-exposure can stimulate or depress the embryogenesis of Japanese quails and that this effect could depend on the exposure duration.
Study character:

Study funded by

  • European Union (EU)/European Commission
  • National Academy of Sciences of Ukraine, Ukraine
  • South Moravian Region, Czech Republic

Related articles