In previous research, we found an increase in DNA strand breaks in brain cells of rats acutely exposed to a 60 Hz magnetic field (for 2 h at an intensity of 0.5 mT). DNA strand breaks were measured with a microgel electrophoresis assay using the length of DNA migration as an index. In the present experiment, we found that most of the magnetic field-induced increase in DNA migration was observed only after proteinase-K treatment, suggesting that the field caused DNA-protein crosslinks. In addition, when brain cells from control rats were exposed to X-rays, an increase in DNA migration was observed, the extent of which was independent of proteinase-K treatment. However, the X-ray-induced increase in DNA migration was retarded in cells from animals exposed to magnetic fields even after proteinase-K treatment, suggesting that DNA-DNA crosslinks were also induced by the magnetic field. The effects of magnetic fields were also compared with those of a known DNA crosslink-inducing agent mitomycin C. The pattern of effects is similar between the two agents. These data suggest that both DNA-protein and DNA-DNA crosslinks are formed in brain cells of rats after acute exposure to a 60 Hz magnetic field.
Copyright 1998 Elsevier Science B.V. All rights reserved.