The aim of this study was to investigate long-term effects of radiofrequency radiation (RFR) emitted from a Wireless Fidelity (Wi-Fi) system on testes. The study was carried out on 16 Wistar Albino adult male rats by dividing them into two groups such as sham (n: 8) and exposure (n: 8). Rats in the exposure group were exposed to 2.4 GHz RFR radiation for 24 h/d during 12 months (1 year). The same procedure was applied to the rats in the sham control group except the Wi-Fi system was turned off. Immediately after the last exposure, rats were sacrificed and reproductive organs were removed. Motility (%), concentration (×10(6)/mL), tail defects (%), head defects (%) and total morphologic defects (%) of sperms and weight of testes (g), left epididymis (g), prostate (g), seminal vesicles (g) were determined. Seminiferous tubules diameter (μm) and tunica albuginea thickness (μm) were also measured. However, the results were evaluated by using Johnsen's score. Head defects increased in the exposure group (p < 0.05) while weight of the epididymis and seminal vesicles, seminiferous tubules diameter and tunica albuginea thickness were decreased in the exposure group (p < 0.01, p < 0.001, p < 0.0001). However, other alterations of other parameters were not found significant (p > 0.05). In conclusion, we observed that long-term exposure of 2.4 GHz RF emitted from Wi-Fi (2420 μW/kg, 1 g average) affects some of the reproductive parameters of male rats. We suggest Wi-Fi users to avoid long-term exposure of RF emissions from Wi-Fi equipment.
Keywords: 2.4 GHz Wi-Fi; electromagnetic fields; long-term exposure; radiofrequency; reproduction; testes.