In vitro effect of pulsed 900 MHz GSM radiation on mitochondrial membrane potential and motility of human spermatozoa

Bioelectromagnetics. 2008 May;29(4):268-76. doi: 10.1002/bem.20390.


Ejaculated, density purified, human spermatozoa were exposed to pulsed 900 MHz GSM mobile phone radiation at two specific absorption rate levels (SAR 2.0 and 5.7 W/kg) and compared with controls over time. Change in sperm mitochondrial membrane potential was analysed using flow cytometry. Sperm motility was determined by computer assisted sperm analysis (CASA). There was no effect of pulsed 900 MHz GSM radiation on mitochondrial membrane potential. This was also the case for all kinematic parameters assessed at a SAR of 2.0 W/kg. However, over time, the two kinematic parameters straight line velocity (VSL) and beat-cross frequency (BCF) were significantly impaired (P < 0.05) after the exposure at SAR 5.7 W/kg and no exposure by time interaction was present. This result should not be ascribed to thermal effects, due to the cooling methods employed in the RF chamber and temperature control within the incubator.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Cell Phone*
  • Cells, Cultured
  • Dose-Response Relationship, Radiation
  • Humans
  • Membrane Potential, Mitochondrial / physiology*
  • Membrane Potential, Mitochondrial / radiation effects*
  • Microwaves*
  • Radiation Dosage
  • Sperm Motility / physiology*
  • Sperm Motility / radiation effects*