Pathophysiology of microwave radiation: effect on rat brain

Appl Biochem Biotechnol. 2012 Jan;166(2):379-88. doi: 10.1007/s12010-011-9433-6. Epub 2011 Nov 29.


The study aims to investigate the effect of 2.45 GHz microwave radiation on Wistar rats. Rats of 35 days old with 130 ± 10 g body weight were selected for this study. Animals were divided into two groups: sham exposed and experimental (six animals each). Animals were exposed for 2 h a day for 45 days at 2.45 GHz frequency (power density, 0.21 mW/cm(2)). The whole body specific absorption rate was estimated to be 0.14 W/kg. Exposure took place in a ventilated plexiglas cage and kept in an anechoic chamber under a horn antenna. After completion of the exposure period, rats were killed, and pineal gland and whole brain tissues were isolated for the estimation of melatonin, creatine kinase, caspase 3, and calcium ion concentration. Experiments were performed in a blind manner and repeated. A significant decrease (P < 0.05) was recorded in the level of pineal melatonin of exposed group as compared with sham exposed. A significant increase (P < 0.05) in creatine kinase, caspase 3, and calcium ion concentration was observed in whole brain of exposed group of animals as compared to sham exposed. One-way analysis of variance method was adopted for statistical analysis. The study concludes that a reduction in melatonin or an increase in caspase-3, creatine kinase, and calcium ion may cause significant damage in brain due to chronic exposure of these radiations. These biomarkers clearly indicate possible health implications of such exposures.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Brain / enzymology
  • Brain / metabolism
  • Brain / radiation effects*
  • Calcium / metabolism
  • Caspase 3 / metabolism
  • Creatine Kinase / metabolism
  • Male
  • Melatonin / metabolism
  • Microwaves / adverse effects*
  • Rats
  • Rats, Wistar


  • Creatine Kinase
  • Caspase 3
  • Melatonin
  • Calcium