Chronic exposure to low-intensity magnetic field improves acquisition and maintenance of memory

Neuroreport. 2008 Mar 26;19(5):549-52. doi: 10.1097/WNR.0b013e3282f8b1a0.


Although past research has suggested that acute exposure to extremely low-frequency magnetic field (ELF MF) impairs learning and memory function, data on chronic exposure remain scarce. In this study, we examined the changes in spatial learning and memory by the Morris water maze test after 4 weeks of daily exposure of rats to a 50-Hz magnetic field of 2 mT for either 1 or 4 h. We found that chronic exposure to ELF MF reduced the latency to find the hidden platform and improved long-term memory of former location of platform without affecting the short-term memory and motor activity. These findings for the first time indicate that chronic exposure to ELF MF exerts a positive effect on the acquisition and maintenance of spatial memory.

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Behavior, Animal / radiation effects
  • Electromagnetic Fields*
  • Male
  • Maze Learning / radiation effects
  • Memory / radiation effects*
  • Rats
  • Rats, Sprague-Dawley
  • Spatial Behavior / radiation effects*
  • Time Factors