EMR Research Updates - EMR & Health Report - December 2015 Issue

Research Updates on ELF fields (from electrical sources)

Genes - Scientists from China investigated the genetic impact of magnetic fields from electrical sources on mouse sperm cells. They showed that exposure affected DNA methylation (which controls gene expression). (Liu, Y et al, Biomed Res Int, 2015.)

Cells - Researchers from Korea investigated the effects of power-frequency magnetic fields on several different cell lines. They found that some exposed cell lines had reduced numbers, viability and rates of DNA synthesis and concluded that exposure could delay cell cycle progression. (Lee, HC et al, Bioelectromagnetics 36(7):506-16, 2015.)

RF/wireless radiation

Heart - WiFi radiation had harmful effects on the cardiovascular system in a study from Algeria. Scientists exposed albino rabbits to a 2.45 GHz WiFi signal emitted from an antenna located close to the heart. They found that exposure affected heart variability and blood pressure and adrenal hormones dopamine and epinephrine, which affect the cardiovascular system.(Saili, L et al, Environ Toxicol Pharmacol 40(2):600-5, Sept, 2015.)

Prenatal exposure - Prenatal exposure to mobile phone radiation could affect offspring, according to research from Turkey. Scientists exposed pregnant rats to a 900 MHz wireless signal for one hour a day for nine days. They found that their offspring had lower numbers of Purkinje cells (neurons) and pathological changes in these cells. This showed that exposure affects the cerebellum of the newborn. (Odaci, E et al, J Chem Neuroanat, Sept 21, 2015.)

Speech problems - Another prenatal study, this time on humans, investigated whether maternal exposure to electromagnetic fields affected the speech of the unborn child. Iranian scientists asked mothers of children with and without speech problems about their exposure to electromagnetic fields from different sources during pregnancy. They found a link between speech problems and mothers’ use of mobile phones while pregnant. (Zarei, S et al, J Biomed Phys Eng, 5(3), 151-4, Sep 2015.)

Male fertility - Use of wireless internet could be damaging male fertility. Turkish scientists analysed the semen of approximately 1000 men with fertility problems and questioned them about their use of mobile phones and wireless internet. They found that sperm motility decreased with greater use of wireless internet and wireless internet users had less motile sperm than wired internet users or mobile phone users. (Yildirim, ME et al, Kaohsiung J Med Sci, 31(9):480-4, 2015.)

Sperm - Some aspects of mobile phone use can adversely affect sperm, say scientists from Israel. The researchers questioned 106 men referred for semen analysis about their mobile phone use. They found that talking on a mobile phone while charging it was linked with abnormal sperm concentration in semen. (Zilberlicht, A et al, Reprod Biomed Online, 31(3):421-6, 2015.)

Immunity - Mobile phone radiation had a harmful effect on human immune cells. Scientists exposed blood samples from 13 healthy volunteers to a mobile phone signal of 900 MHz for two hours. Exposed samples showed increased oxidation. (Kazemi, E et al, J Biomed Phys Eng 5(3), 105-14, Sept, 2015.)

Oxidation - Turkish scientists reviewed studies on the radiation from mobile phones and similar devices and oxidation. The review found that exposure caused oxidative stress— which can be linked to a wide range of adverse effects on the body. (Dasdag, S and Akdag, MZ, J Chem Neuroanat, Sept 12, 2015.)

Prenatal exposure - Pregnant rats were exposed to a 950 MHz mobile phone signal throughout pregnancy and for six days afterwards. They were found to produce offspring with reduced weight, lower blood glucose levels and more carbonyl proteins in the brain cortex. (Furtado-Filho, OV et al, Int J Radiat Biol, 2015, in press.)

Children - Children should be protected from wireless radiation, say collaborators from Russia and the US. The referred to children’s heavy use of phones and early adoption of the devices and the strength of signals emitted by smart phones. The authors encouraged application of the precautionary approach to exposure. (Markov, M and Grigoriev, Y, Electromagn Biol Med 34(3):251-6, 2015.)

Electromagnetic hypersensitivity

Diagnosing EHS - Dr Dominique Belpomme has conducted tests on 521people with electromagnetic hypersensitivity (EHS), 52 with multiple chemical sensitivity (MCS) and 154 with both conditions. He found:

  • increased levels of histamine, indicating
  • chronic inflammation (40% of subjects);
  • indications of opening of the blood-brain-barrier in some subjects;
  • indications of autoimmune response;
  • increases in some stress proteins;
  • decreased melatonin levels in all subjects;
  • changes to brain blood flow in the temporal lobes indicating inflammation involves the limbic system and thalamus. ‘Our data strongly suggest that EHS and MCS can be objectively characterized and routinely diagnosed by commercially available simple tests,’ the authors said. (Belpomme, D et al, Rev Environ Health, 30 (4):251-71, Dec 2015.)

EHS is real - Electromagnetic hypersensitivity is related to EMF exposure and should be listed in the International Classification of Diseases, say authors of a new paper. The scientists reviewed literature on EHS and found symptoms among Soviet radar workers, Swedes using cathode ray computers and other people with EHS. The authors expressed particular concern about the effects of the long-term exposure of children at schools. (Hedendahl, L et al, Rev Environ Health, Sept 15, 2015.)

Not nocebo - Electromagnetic hypersensitivity is unlikely to be caused by the nocebo effect, according to new research from France. M Dieudonné questioned the hypothesis that electromagnetic hypersensitivity is caused by the nocebo effect—the suggestion that exposure could be harmful—a view taken by Australian and other authorities. She interviewed 40 EHS volunteers and found that symptoms occurred before they became aware of the potential for EMF to affect their health—a result that is inconsistent with a nocebo effect. (Dieudonné M, Bioelectromagnetics, Sept 15, 2015.)

Causes - Information from the Earth’s electromagnetic field is essential for human health and behaviour. When this field is swamped with artificial electromagnetic fields, the result can be ‘devastating’ biological effects that disrupt health when the body’s adaptive processes fail to cope. Electromagnetic hypersensitivity occurs when a person is exposed chronically or successively and effects on voltage-gated calcium channels may explain this condition. (Sage, C, Rev Environ Health, Sept 12, 2015.)

The following research updates were posted from EMR and Health, December Report 2015 which is a FREE subscription. More information is available here >