Effect of exposure to radio frequency radiation emitted by cell phone on the developing dorsal root ganglion of chick embryo: a light microscopic study

Nepal Med Coll J. 2012 Dec;14(4):337-41.


With an ever increasing number of cell phone users since late twentieth [corrected] century, magnitude of the problem of exposure to radiation emitted by cell phone is self evident. Extensive research had been devoted to incriminate or absolve it as a health hazard. Radiofrequency radiation emitted by cell phone had been stated to be a potent carcinogen, cytotoxic, genotoxic, mutagenic and neurobehavioral teratogen. Its effect on the brain had been a subject of extensive research evidently due to its proximity to the user's brain. While considering the biological effects of radiofrequency radiation, its intensity, frequency and the duration of exposure are important determinants. Nevertheless the results of these different studies have not been unequivocal. Considering the contradictory reports, the present work was undertaken to study the effect of such an exposure on the developing neural tissue of chick embryo. The processes of cell division and differentiation are fundamental to the development of any living being and are a sensitive index of any insult sustained at this stage. Neurons of dorsal root ganglion were selected for the present study as these ganglia were fully differentiated as early as fourth day of embryonic life. By varying duration of exposure, the embryos were exposed to different doses of radiation, sacrificed at different periods of incubation and subjected to histological processing. On light microscopic study it was observed that developing neurons of dorsal root ganglion suffered a damage which was dose dependent and persisted in spite of giving the exposure-free period between two exposures.

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Cell Phone*
  • Chick Embryo
  • Ganglia, Spinal / radiation effects*
  • Ganglia, Spinal / ultrastructure
  • Radio Waves*