Responses of neurons to an amplitude modulated microwave stimulus

Neurosci Lett. 2002 Nov 29;333(3):175-8. doi: 10.1016/s0304-3940(02)00903-5.


In this study we investigated the effects of a pulsed radio frequency signal similar to the signal produced by global system for mobile communication telephones (900 MHz carrier, modulated at 217 Hz) on neurons of the avian brain. We found that such stimulation resulted in changes in the amount of neural activity by more than half of the brain cells. Most (76%) of the responding cells increased their rates of firing by an average 3.5-fold. The other responding cells exhibited a decrease in their rates of spontaneous activity Such responses indicate potential effects on humans using hand-held cellular phones.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Cerebellum / cytology
  • Cerebellum / physiology
  • Cerebellum / radiation effects
  • Electric Stimulation
  • Membrane Potentials / radiation effects
  • Microwaves*
  • Neurons / physiology
  • Neurons / radiation effects*
  • Songbirds
  • Telencephalon / physiology
  • Telencephalon / radiation effects
  • Time Factors