Effect of 3G cell phone exposure with computer controlled 2-D stepper motor on non-thermal activation of the hsp27/p38MAPK stress pathway in rat brain

Cell Biochem Biophys. 2014 Mar;68(2):347-58. doi: 10.1007/s12013-013-9715-4.


Cell phone radiation exposure and its biological interaction is the present concern of debate. Present study aimed to investigate the effect of 3G cell phone exposure with computer controlled 2-D stepper motor on 45-day-old male Wistar rat brain. Animals were exposed for 2 h a day for 60 days by using mobile phone with angular movement up to zero to 30°. The variation of the motor is restricted to 90° with respect to the horizontal plane, moving at a pre-determined rate of 2° per minute. Immediately after 60 days of exposure, animals were scarified and numbers of parameters (DNA double-strand break, micronuclei, caspase 3, apoptosis, DNA fragmentation, expression of stress-responsive genes) were performed. Result shows that microwave radiation emitted from 3G mobile phone significantly induced DNA strand breaks in brain. Meanwhile a significant increase in micronuclei, caspase 3 and apoptosis were also observed in exposed group (P < 0.05). Western blotting result shows that 3G mobile phone exposure causes a transient increase in phosphorylation of hsp27, hsp70, and p38 mitogen-activated protein kinase (p38MAPK), which leads to mitochondrial dysfunction-mediated cytochrome c release and subsequent activation of caspases, involved in the process of radiation-induced apoptotic cell death. Study shows that the oxidative stress is the main factor which activates a variety of cellular signal transduction pathways, among them the hsp27/p38MAPK is the pathway of principle stress response. Results conclude that 3G mobile phone radiations affect the brain function and cause several neurological disorders.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Apoptosis / radiation effects
  • Brain / cytology
  • Brain / enzymology
  • Brain / metabolism
  • Brain / radiation effects*
  • Caspases / metabolism
  • Cell Phone
  • Cells, Cultured
  • DNA Breaks, Double-Stranded / radiation effects
  • DNA Fragmentation / drug effects
  • Enzyme Activation / radiation effects
  • Erythrocytes / metabolism
  • Erythrocytes / radiation effects
  • HSP27 Heat-Shock Proteins / metabolism*
  • Male
  • Microwaves*
  • Oxidative Stress / radiation effects
  • Phosphorylation / radiation effects
  • Rats
  • Rats, Wistar
  • p38 Mitogen-Activated Protein Kinases / metabolism*


  • HSP27 Heat-Shock Proteins
  • p38 Mitogen-Activated Protein Kinases
  • Caspases