Study type: Medical/biological study (experimental study)

Effect of Extremely Low-Frequency (ELF) Magnetic Fields on Anticancer Drugs Potency med./bio.

Published in: IEEE Trans Magn 2012; 48 (11): 2869-2872

Aim of study (acc. to author)

The effects of an acute exposure of Escherichia coli to 60 Hz magnetic fields with different strengths on the cytotoxic potency and membrane permeability of two anti-cancer drugs should be investigated.

Background/further details

The investigated drugs were mitomycin C and cisplatin. An enhancing effect of a 60 Hz magnetic field with 50 mT on the cytotoxic potency of mitomycin C had already been observed in previous tests by the authors (no reference). Changes in the membrane permeability depending on the magnetic flux density were assumed as the underlying mechanism of action.



Exposure Parameters
Exposure 1: 60 Hz
Exposure duration: continuous for 6 h

Exposure 1

Main characteristics
Frequency 60 Hz
Exposure duration continuous for 6 h
Exposure setup
Exposure source
Setup the temperature within the experimental area was controlled by circulating water at 36°C
Sham exposure A sham exposure was conducted.
Measurand Value Type Method Mass Remarks
magnetic flux density 50 mT - measured - -
magnetic flux density 30 mT - measured - -
magnetic flux density 5 mT - measured - -

Exposed system:

Methods Endpoint/measurement parameters/methodology

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

Main outcome of study (acc. to author)

A significant decrease of the cell viability was found in tests with both drugs and simultaneous exposure to the magnetic field compared to approaches without magnetic field exposure. This was interpreted as an increase of the cytotoxic potency of the drugs. The strongest effect in tests with mitomycin C was observed for a magnetic flux density of 50 mT. The tests with the supernatants of the tests above showed a significantly reduced potency of the approaches with magnetic field exposure compared to the supernatants without exposure. This was interpreted as an increased intracellular and decreased extracellular concentration of both drugs in tests with magnetic field exposure, which was explained by a significantly increased membrane permeability.
The authors conclude that an acute exposure to 60 Hz magnetic fields with 50 mT increases the membrane permeability and thus the uptake of mitomycin C and cisplatin in E. coli which leads to a enhancement of their cytotoxic potency.

Study character:

Study funded by

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