Study type: Medical/biological study (experimental study)

Study of Oxidative Stress in Human Lens Epithelial Cells Exposed to 1.8 GHz Radiofrequency Fields. med./bio.

Published in: PLoS One 2013; 8 (8): e72370

Aim of study (acc. to author)

To investigate possible reasons for the increase of reactive oxygen species formation in human eye lens epithelial cells exposed to low intensity 1.8 GHz radiofrequency fields.

Background/further details

Human eye lens epithelial cells were used in this study because the eye is an important organ frequently exposed to radiofrequency fields from mobile phones.
The cells were sham exposed or exposed to radiofrequency fields with specific absorption rates of 2, 3 or 4 W/kg. Different exposure durations were used: For the detection of reactive oxygen species, cells were exposed for 0.5, 1 or 1.5 hours and for the analysis of the cell viability and lipid peroxidation 6, 12 or 24 hours. The exposure duration for gene expression and protein expression analysis was 1 hour.

Endpoint

Exposure

Exposure Parameters
Exposure 1: 1,800 MHz
Modulation type: pulsed
Exposure duration: intermittent (5 minutes field "on"/10 minutes field "off") for up to 24 hours
Exposure 2: 1,800 MHz
Modulation type: pulsed
Exposure duration: intermittent (5 minutes field "on"/10 minutes field "off") for up to 24 hours
Exposure 3: 1,800 MHz
Modulation type: pulsed
Exposure duration: intermittent (5 minutes field "on"/10 minutes field "off") for up to 24 hours

Exposure 1

Main characteristics
Frequency 1,800 MHz
Type
Exposure duration intermittent (5 minutes field "on"/10 minutes field "off") for up to 24 hours
Modulation
Modulation type pulsed
Duty cycle 12.5 %
Repetition frequency 217 Hz
Pulse type rectangular
Additional info

GSM-like signal

Exposure setup
Exposure source
Chamber exposure system consists of exposure-waveguide chamber, sham exposure chamber, signal tower, amplifiers, PC with software and a CO2 incubator at 37°C; temperature difference never exceeded 0.1°C between exposed cells and sham exposed cells
Sham exposure A sham exposure was conducted.
Parameters
Measurand Value Type Method Mass Remarks
SAR 2 W/kg mean - - -

Exposure 2

Main characteristics
Frequency 1,800 MHz
Type
Exposure duration intermittent (5 minutes field "on"/10 minutes field "off") for up to 24 hours
Modulation
Modulation type pulsed
Duty cycle 12.5 %
Repetition frequency 217 Hz
Additional info

GSM-like signal

Exposure setup
Exposure source
Sham exposure A sham exposure was conducted.
Parameters
Measurand Value Type Method Mass Remarks
SAR 3 W/kg mean - - -

Exposure 3

Main characteristics
Frequency 1,800 MHz
Type
Exposure duration intermittent (5 minutes field "on"/10 minutes field "off") for up to 24 hours
Modulation
Modulation type pulsed
Duty cycle 12.5 %
Repetition frequency 217 Hz
Additional info

GSM-like signal

Exposure setup
Exposure source
Sham exposure A sham exposure was conducted.
Parameters
Measurand Value Type Method Mass Remarks
SAR 4 W/kg mean - - -

Reference articles

  • Xu S et al. (2013): Cell Type-Dependent Induction of DNA Damage by 1800 MHz Radiofrequency Electromagnetic Fields Does Not Result in Significant Cellular Dysfunctions.

Exposed system:

Methods Endpoint/measurement parameters/methodology

Investigated system:
Time of investigation:
  • after exposure

Main outcome of study (acc. to author)

In all exposed cell cultures, the level of reactive oxygen species and the lipid peroxidation were significantly increased compared to the corresponding sham exposed cell cultures, while the cell viability, the gene expression and the protein expression were significantly decreased.
The authors conclude that the observed increase in the oxidative stress level in human eye lens epithelial cells exposed to radiofrequency fields may be due to a down-regulation of antioxidant enzymes.

Study character:

Study funded by

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