The toxic effects of mobile phone radiofrequency (940 MHz) on the structure of calf thymus DNA

Ecotoxicol Environ Saf. 2013 Feb;88:35-41. doi: 10.1016/j.ecoenv.2012.10.016. Epub 2012 Nov 17.

Abstract

Currently, the biological effects of nonionizing electromagnetic fields (EMFs) including radiofrequency (RF) radiation have been the subject of numerous experimental and theoretical studies. The aim of this study is to evaluate the possible biological effects of mobile phone RF (940 MHz, 15 V/m and SAR=40 mW/kg) on the structure of calf thymus DNA (ct DNA) immediately after exposure and 2 h after 45 min exposure via diverse range of spectroscopic instruments. The UV-vis and circular dichroism (CD) experiments depict that mobile phone EMFs can remarkably cause disturbance on ct DNA structure. In addition, the DNA samples, immediately after exposure and 2 h after 45 min exposure, are relatively thermally unstable compared to the DNA solution, which was placed in a small shielded box (unexposed ct DNA). Furthermore, the exposed DNA samples (the DNA samples that were exposed to 940 MHz EMF) have more fluorescence emission when compared with the unexposed DNA, which may have occurred attributable to expansion of the exposed DNA structure. The results of dynamic light scattering (DLS) and zeta potential experiments demonstrate that RF-EMFs lead to increment in the surface charge and size of DNA. The structure of DNA immediately after exposure is not significantly different from the DNA sample 2 h after 45 min exposure. In other words, the EMF-induced conformational changes are irreversible. Collectively, our results reveal that 940 MHz can alter the structure of DNA. The displacement of electrons in DNA by EMFs may lead to conformational changes of DNA and DNA disaggregation. Results from this study could have an important implication on the health effects of RF-EMFs exposure. In addition, this finding could proffer a novel strategy for the development of next generation of mobile phone.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Cattle
  • Cell Phone*
  • Circular Dichroism
  • DNA / radiation effects*
  • Electromagnetic Fields
  • Fluorescence
  • Nucleic Acid Conformation / radiation effects*
  • Radio Waves*

Substances

  • DNA
  • calf thymus DNA