2.45 GHz microwave irradiation-induced oxidative stress affects implantation or pregnancy in mice, Mus musculus

Appl Biochem Biotechnol. 2013 Mar;169(5):1727-51. doi: 10.1007/s12010-012-0079-9. Epub 2013 Jan 22.


The present experiment was designed to study the 2.45 GHz low-level microwave (MW) irradiation-induced stress response and its effect on implantation or pregnancy in female mice. Twelve-week-old mice were exposed to MW radiation (continuous wave for 2 h/day for 45 days, frequency 2.45 GHz, power density=0.033549 mW/cm(2), and specific absorption rate=0.023023 W/kg). At the end of a total of 45 days of exposure, mice were sacrificed, implantation sites were monitored, blood was processed to study stress parameters (hemoglobin, RBC and WBC count, and neutrophil/lymphocyte (N/L) ratio), the brain was processed for comet assay, and plasma was used for nitric oxide (NO), progesterone and estradiol estimation. Reactive oxygen species (ROS) and the activities of ROS-scavenging enzymes- superoxide dismutase, catalase, and glutathione peroxidase-were determined in the liver, kidney and ovary. We observed that implantation sites were affected significantly in MW-irradiated mice as compared to control. Further, in addition to a significant increase in ROS, hemoglobin (p<0.001), RBC and WBC counts (p<0.001), N/L ratio (p<0.01), DNA damage (p<0.001) in brain cells, and plasma estradiol concentration (p<0.05), a significant decrease was observed in NO level (p<0.05) and antioxidant enzyme activities of MW-exposed mice. Our findings led us to conclude that a low level of MW irradiation-induced oxidative stress not only suppresses implantation, but it may also lead to deformity of the embryo in case pregnancy continues. We also suggest that MW radiation-induced oxidative stress by increasing ROS production in the body may lead to DNA strand breakage in the brain cells and implantation failure/resorption or abnormal pregnancy in mice.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Brain / enzymology
  • Brain / radiation effects*
  • Catalase / metabolism
  • Comet Assay
  • DNA Damage
  • Embryo Implantation / radiation effects*
  • Estradiol / blood
  • Female
  • Glutathione Peroxidase / metabolism
  • Kidney / enzymology
  • Kidney / radiation effects
  • Lipid Peroxidation / radiation effects
  • Liver / enzymology
  • Liver / radiation effects
  • Mice
  • Microwaves
  • Ovary / enzymology
  • Ovary / radiation effects*
  • Oxidative Stress / radiation effects
  • Pregnancy
  • Pregnancy, Animal / metabolism
  • Pregnancy, Animal / radiation effects*
  • Reactive Oxygen Species / metabolism
  • Superoxide Dismutase / metabolism


  • Reactive Oxygen Species
  • Estradiol
  • Catalase
  • Glutathione Peroxidase
  • Superoxide Dismutase