No Dynamic Changes in Blood-brain Barrier Permeability Occur in Developing Rats During Local Cortex Exposure to Microwaves

In Vivo. May-Jun 2015;29(3):351-7.


Little information is available about the effects of exposure to radiofrequency electromagnetic fields (RF) on cerebral microcirculation during rat developmental stages. We investigated whether the permeability of the blood-brain barrier (BBB) in juvenile and young adult rats was modified during local cortex exposure to RF under non-thermal conditions. The cortex tissue targeted was locally exposed to 1457 MHz RF at an average specific absorption rate of 2.0 W/kg in the target area for 50 min and permeability changes in the BBB of the pia mater were measured directly, using intravital fluorescence microscopy. There was no significant difference in extravasation of intravenously-injected dye between exposed and sham-exposed groups of either category of rats. No histological evidence of albumin leakage was found in any of the brains just after exposure, indicating that no traces of BBB disruption remained. These findings suggest that no dynamic changes occurred in BBB permeability of the rats at either of these developmental stages, even during local RF exposure at non-thermal levels.

Keywords: Radiofrequency electromagnetic field; blood-brain barrier; development stage; juvenile; local exposure; temperature; young adult.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Blood-Brain Barrier / metabolism*
  • Blood-Brain Barrier / radiation effects
  • Capillary Permeability / radiation effects*
  • Dextrans / pharmacokinetics
  • Fluorescein-5-isothiocyanate / analogs & derivatives
  • Fluorescein-5-isothiocyanate / pharmacokinetics
  • Fluorescent Dyes / pharmacokinetics
  • Male
  • Microwaves*
  • Rats, Sprague-Dawley


  • Dextrans
  • Fluorescent Dyes
  • fluorescein isothiocyanate dextran
  • Fluorescein-5-isothiocyanate