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Medical/biological study (experimental study)

EMF radiations (1800 MHz)-inhibited early seedling growth of maize (Zea mays) involves alterations in starch and sucrose metabolism.

Published in: Protoplasma 2016; 253 (4): 1043-1049

Aim of study (acc. to author)

The effects of exposure of maize seedlings to a 1800 MHz electromagnetic field on growth and the carbohydrate metabolism should be investigated.
Background/further details: After germination, seedlings were divided into the following groups: exposure to the electromagnetic field for 1) 30 minutes, 2) 1 hour, 3) 2 hours, 4) 4 hours and 5) no exposure (control group). Each group consisted of 5 petri dishes with 10 seedlings each (n=50 seedlings in total). All seedlings were further cultivated after exposure and investigated after 7 days.

Endpoint

Exposure

Exposure Parameters
Exposure 1: 1,800 MHz
Modulation type: CW
Exposure duration: continuous for 30 minutes
Exposure 2: 1,800 MHz
Modulation type: CW
Exposure duration: continuous for 1 hour
Exposure 3: 1,800 MHz
Modulation type: CW
Exposure duration: continuous for 2 hours
Exposure 4: 1,800 MHz
Modulation type: CW
Exposure duration: continuous for 4 hours
General information
SAR calculations based on Andreuccetti D, Fossi R, Petrucci C (1997) An internet resource for the calculation of the dielectric properties of body tissues in the frequency range 10 Hz-100 GHz. http://niremf.ifac.cnr.it/tissprop/, (Italy): IFAC-CNR; Based on data published by C Gabriel et al. in 1996
Exposure 1
Main characteristics
Frequency 1,800 MHz
Type
Exposure duration continuous for 30 minutes
Modulation
Modulation type CW
Exposure setup
Exposure source
Distance between measurement device and exposure object 3 cm
Chamber petri dishes (15 cm diameter)
Additional info exposure system was kept in an empty separate room coated with special radiofrequency shielding paint in order to protect from external exposure sources
Parameters
Measurand Value Type Method Mass Remarks
power density density 332 mW/m² mean measured - ± 10.36 mW/m2
power 0.1 W - - - -
SAR 1.69 W/kg - calculated - -
Exposure 2
Main characteristics
Frequency 1,800 MHz
Type
Exposure duration continuous for 1 hour
Modulation
Modulation type CW
Exposure setup
Exposure source
Distance between measurement device and exposure object 3 cm
Parameters
Measurand Value Type Method Mass Remarks
power density density 332 mW/m² mean measured - ± 10.36 mW/m2
power 0.1 W - - - -
SAR 1.69 W/kg - calculated - -
Exposure 3
Main characteristics
Frequency 1,800 MHz
Type
Exposure duration continuous for 2 hours
Modulation
Modulation type CW
Exposure setup
Exposure source
Distance between measurement device and exposure object 3 cm
Parameters
Measurand Value Type Method Mass Remarks
power density density 332 mW/m² mean measured - ± 10.36 mW/m2
power 0.1 W - - - -
SAR 1.69 W/kg - calculated - -
Exposure 4
Main characteristics
Frequency 1,800 MHz
Type
Exposure duration continuous for 4 hours
Modulation
Modulation type CW
Exposure setup
Exposure source
Distance between measurement device and exposure object 3 cm
Parameters
Measurand Value Type Method Mass Remarks
power density density 332 mW/m² mean measured - ± 10.36 mW/m2
power 0.1 W - - - -
SAR 1.69 W/kg - calculated - -
Exposed system:
  • plant
  • maize seedlings (Zea mays L)
  • whole body

Methods Endpoint/measurement parameters/methodology

Investigated material:
Time of investigation:
  • after exposure

Main outcome of study (acc. to author)

After 4 hours of exposure, the length of roots and coleoptiles as well as the chlorophyll content were significantly reduced compared to the control group (group 5).
The carbohydrate and reducing sugar contents were significantly increased after 1 hour of exposure or more (groups 2, 3 and 4) compared to the control group.
The enzyme activities of α-amylase, β-amylases and invertases were significantly increased in groups 2,3 and 4 compared to the control group, whereas the enzyme activity of the starch phosphorylases was significantly decreased at the same time. No distinct trend was observed in the enzyme activities of the phosphatases.
In all parameters, a tendency towards enhanced effects with increasing exposure duration was observed.
The authors conclude that exposure of maize seedlings to a 1800 MHz electromagnetic field could interfere with growth and the carbohydrate metabolism.
Study character:

Study funded by

  • University Grants Commission (UGC), India
  • Department of Science and Technology (DST), India
  • Ministry of Environment, Forests and Climate Change (MoEFCC), India

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