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Revisión de Henry Lai

Sábado 12 de noviembre de 2005 · 1854 lecturas

Paper presented at the “International Workshop on Biological Effects of Ionizing Radiation, Electromagnetic Fields and Chemical Toxic Agents” in Sinaia, Romania, October 2-6, 2001.

Genetic Effects of Nonionizing Electromagnetic Fields

Henry Lai
Bioelectromagnetics Research Laboratory
Department of Bioengineering
University of Washington
Seattle, WA

Nonionizing electromagnetic fields (EMF) have photon energy less than 10eV, a level not sufficient to produce ions by ejection of orbital electrons from atoms. The biological effects of two types of nonionizing electromagnetic fields are being studies intensely: extremely-low-frequency (ELF) electromagnetic field and radiofrequency radiation. Extremely-low-frequency EMF covers the frequency range of 3 Hz to 3 KHz. The most intensely studied frequency is the power frequency of 50/60 Hz. Electric appliances and power lines emit 50/60 Hz EMF. Radiofrequency radiation (RFR) covers a frequency range between 10 KHz to 300 GHz. Different frequencies of RFR are used in different applications. For example, the frequency range of 5.4 to 16 KHz is used in AM radio transmission, while 76 to 108 MHz is used for FM radio. Mobile phone technology uses frequencies between 800 MHz and 3 GHz. And RFR of 2450 MHz is used in microwave cooking.

Genetic effects of ELF-EMF and RFR have been reported in various studies [e.g., Garaj-Vrhovac et al., 1991; Maes et al., 1993; Sarkar et al., 1994; Simko et al., 1998; Zotti-Martelli et al., 2000]. However, since the energy of nonionizing EMF is not sufficient to break chemical bonds directly, the effects have to be caused by indirect mechanisms. In this brief paper, I have described the research we carried out in our laboratory on genetic effects of nonionizing EMF. We studied mainly effects of ELF- EMF and RFR on DNA strand breaks in brain cells of rats exposed in vivo. Details of the exposure systems used in our studies have been described by Guy et al. [1979] and Lai et al. [1993]. In bioelecromagnetics research, it is very important that the exposure system be well characterized particularly with regard to energy absorption and field uniformity.

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