2.45-GHz microwave irradiation adversely affects reproductive function in male mouse, Mus musculus by inducing oxidative and nitrosative stress

Free Radic Res. 2014 May;48(5):511-25. doi: 10.3109/10715762.2014.888717. Epub 2014 Feb 25.


Electromagnetic radiations are reported to produce long-term and short-term biological effects, which are of great concern to human health due to increasing use of devices emitting EMR especially microwave (MW) radiation in our daily life. In view of the unavoidable use of MW emitting devices (microwaves oven, mobile phones, Wi-Fi, etc.) and their harmful effects on biological system, it was thought worthwhile to investigate the long-term effects of low-level MW irradiation on the reproductive function of male Swiss strain mice and its mechanism of action. Twelve-week-old mice were exposed to non-thermal low-level 2.45-GHz MW radiation (CW for 2 h/day for 30 days, power density = 0.029812 mW/cm(2) and SAR = 0.018 W/Kg). Sperm count and sperm viability test were done as well as vital organs were processed to study different stress parameters. Plasma was used for testosterone and testis for 3β HSD assay. Immunohistochemistry of 3β HSD and nitric oxide synthase (i-NOS) was also performed in testis. We observed that MW irradiation induced a significant decrease in sperm count and sperm viability along with the decrease in seminiferous tubule diameter and degeneration of seminiferous tubules. Reduction in testicular 3β HSD activity and plasma testosterone levels was also noted in the exposed group of mice. Increased expression of testicular i-NOS was observed in the MW-irradiated group of mice. Further, these adverse reproductive effects suggest that chronic exposure to nonionizing MW radiation may lead to infertility via free radical species-mediated pathway.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Electromagnetic Radiation
  • Male
  • Mice
  • Microwaves / adverse effects*
  • Nitrites / chemistry*
  • Oxidative Stress
  • Sperm Count
  • Spermatozoa / abnormalities*
  • Testis / pathology*
  • Testosterone / adverse effects*


  • Nitrites
  • Testosterone