Study type: Medical/biological study (experimental study)

Effects of concurrent caffeine and mobile phone exposure on local target probability processing in the human brain. med./bio.

Published in: Sci Rep 2015; 5: 14434

Aim of study (acc. to author)

The effects of co-exposure of subjects to an UMTS radiofrequency signal and caffeine on the reaction time and the brain activity should be investigated.

Background/further details

25 subjects participated in 4 sessions, respectively: 1) UMTS session: sham caffeine administration (glucose placebo) and UMTS exposure, 2) caffeine session: caffeine administration (3 mg/kg) and UMTS sham exposure, 3) co-exposure session: caffeine administration and UMTS exposure, 4) control session: sham caffeine administration and UMTS sham exposure. EEG data from 21 subjects and reaction time data from 23 subjects were analyzed (remark EMF-Portal: composition of group is contradictory: participation of 9, 11 or 13 females?).



Exposure Parameters
Exposure 1:
Exposure duration: continuous for 15 minutes (2x)
  • SAR: 1.75 W/kg peak value (1 g) (at 2 cm depth from the shell surface of the phantom)
  • SAR: 2 W/kg maximum (10 g) (at any position within the phantom)

Exposure 1

Main characteristics
Exposure duration continuous for 15 minutes (2x)
Exposure setup
Exposure source
Setup a mobile phone (Nokia 6650) was connected to 2W amplifier and a external patch antenna; antenna was mounted on a plastic headset and placed at a distance of 4 to 5 mm from the right ear above the subjects tragus, mimicking the natural position of MP during a call
Sham exposure A sham exposure was conducted.
Measurand Value Type Method Mass Remarks
SAR 1.75 W/kg peak value - 1 g at 2 cm depth from the shell surface of the phantom
SAR 2 W/kg maximum - 10 g at any position within the phantom

Reference articles

  • Trunk A et al. (2014): Lack of interaction between concurrent caffeine and mobile phone exposure on visual target detection: an ERP study.
  • Trunk A et al. (2013): No effects of a single 3G UMTS mobile phone exposure on spontaneous EEG activity, ERP correlates, and automatic deviance detection.
  • Parazzini M et al. (2010): Absence of short-term effects of UMTS exposure on the human auditory system.
  • Stefanics G et al. (2008): Effects of twenty-minute 3G mobile phone irradiation on event related potential components and early gamma synchronization in auditory oddball paradigm.

Exposed system:

Methods Endpoint/measurement parameters/methodology

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

Main outcome of study (acc. to author)

Caffeine administration (session 2) led to significant differences in the EEG and to a significantly reduced reaction time compared to the control session. However, UMTS exposure (session 1) had no significant effect on any parameter in comparison to the control session and did not influence the effects of caffeine in a co-exposure (session 3).
The authors conclude that exposure of subjects to an UMTS radiofrequency signal has no effect on the reaction time and the brain activity, neither alone nor in a co-exposure with caffeine.

Study character:

Study funded by

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