Acute exposure to 930 MHz CW electromagnetic radiation in vitro affects reactive oxygen species level in rat lymphocytes treated by iron ions

Bioelectromagnetics. 2004 Jul;25(5):324-8. doi: 10.1002/bem.10191.


The aim of this study was to test the hypothesis that the 930 MHz continuous wave (CW) electromagnetic field, which is the carrier of signals emitted by cellular phones, affects the reactive oxygen species (ROS) level in living cells. Rat lymphocytes were used in the experiments. A portion of the lymphocytes was treated with iron ions to induce oxidative processes. Exposures to electromagnetic radiation (power density 5 W/m2, theoretical calculated SAR = 1.5 W/kg) were performed within a GTEM cell. Intracellular ROS were measured by the fluorescent probe dichlorofluorescin diacetate (DCF-DA). The results show that acute (5 and 15 min) exposure does not affect the number of produced ROS. If, however, FeCl2 with final concentration 10 microg/ml was added to the lymphocyte suspensions to stimulate ROS production, after both durations of exposure, the magnitude of fluorescence (ROS level during the experiment) was significantly greater in the exposed lymphocytes. The character of the changes in the number of free radicals observed in our experiments was qualitatively compatible with the theoretical prediction from the model of electromagnetic radiation effect on radical pairs.

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Electromagnetic Fields*
  • Environmental Exposure*
  • Ferrous Compounds / pharmacology*
  • Fluoresceins
  • Fluorescent Dyes
  • Free Radicals / radiation effects
  • Lymphocytes / drug effects
  • Lymphocytes / radiation effects*
  • Male
  • Microwaves*
  • Oxidation-Reduction
  • Radiation*
  • Rats
  • Rats, Wistar
  • Reactive Oxygen Species / radiation effects*
  • Time Factors


  • Ferrous Compounds
  • Fluoresceins
  • Fluorescent Dyes
  • Free Radicals
  • Reactive Oxygen Species
  • 2',7'-dichlorofluorescein
  • ferrous chloride