Medical/biological study (observational study)

Cytogenetic Studies on Railway Engine Drivers Exposed to Extremely Low Frequency Electromagnetic Fields (ELF-EMF).

Published in: Int J Hum Genet 2010; 10 (4): 263-269

Aim of study (acc. to author)

To investigate whether chromosomal damage occurrs in blood lymphocytes of railway engine drivers occupationally exposed to 50 Hz magnetic fields.
Background/further details: The blood of 15 exposed railway drivers and 15 guards (which were not exposed to electromagnetic fields according to the authors) as controls was collected. Age and socioeconomic status were similar in individuals from the exposure and the control group. For every individual, three blood vials were examined: 1) blood for chromosome aberration, 2) blood for chromosome aberration with 6 ng/ml mitomycin-C (to check for potential synergistic effects) and 3) blood for sister chromatid exchange.



Exposure Parameters
Exposure 1: 50 Hz
Exposure duration: 9.2 hours (mean value per day with a mean empoyment of 21.06 years)
  • stated to be measured but no values given
  • voltage of 25,000 V given
Exposure 1
Main characteristics
Frequency 50 Hz
Exposure duration 9.2 hours (mean value per day with a mean empoyment of 21.06 years)
Exposure setup
Exposure source
Measurand Value Type Method Mass Remarks
magnetic flux density - - measured - stated to be measured but no values given
cf. remarks - - - - voltage of 25,000 V given
Exposed system:

Methods Endpoint/measurement parameters/methodology

Investigated material:
Time of investigation:
  • after exposure

Main outcome of study (acc. to author)

No significant differences were seen in any examined parameters between lymphocytes of exposed individuals and those of the control group.
The authors conclude that the study does not indicate that occupational exposure to 50 Hz magnetic fields has a genotoxic effect in railway engine drivers nor that there is a synergistic effect of 50 Hz magnetic fields with mitomycin-C.
Study character:

Study funded by

  • not stated/no funding

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