Microwave frequency electromagnetic fields (EMFs) produce widespread neuropsychiatric effects including depression
Pall ML. Microwave frequency electromagnetic fields (EMFs) produce widespread neuropsychiatric effects including depression. J Chem Neuroanat. 2015 Aug 20. pii: S0891-0618(15)00059-9. doi: 10.1016/j.jchemneu.2015.08.
- • Microwave EMFs activate voltage-gated Ca2+ channels (VGCCs) concentrated in the brain
- • Animal studies show such low level MWV EMFs have diverse high impacts in the brain
- • VGCC activity causes widespread neuropsychiatric effects in humans (genetic studies)
- • 26 studies have EMFs assoc. with neuropsychiatric effects; 5 criteria show causality
- • MWV EMFs cause at least 13 neuropsychiatric effects including depression in humans
Non-thermal microwave/lower frequency electromagnetic fields (EMFs) act via voltage-gated calcium channel (VGCC) activation. Calcium channel blockers block EMF effects and several types of additional evidence confirm this mechanism. Low intensity microwave EMFs have been proposed to produce neuropsychiatric effects, sometimes called microwave syndrome, and the focus of this review is whether these are indeed well documented and consistent with the known mechanism(s) of action of such EMFs.
VGCCs occur in very high densities throughout the nervous system and have near universal roles in release of neurotransmitters and neuroendocrine hormones. Soviet and Western literature shows that much of the impact of non-thermal microwave exposures in experimental animals occurs in the brain and peripheral nervous system, such that nervous system histology and function show diverse and substantial changes. These may be generated through roles of VGCC activation, producing excessive neurotransmitter/
Two U.S. government reports from the 1970's-80's provide evidence for many neuropsychiatric effects of non-thermal microwave EMFs, based on occupational exposure studies. 18 more recent epidemiological studies, provide substantial evidence that microwave EMFs from cell/mobile phone base stations, excessive cell/mobile phone usage and from wireless smart meters can each produce similar patterns of neuropsychiatric effects, with several of these studies showing clear dose-response relationships. Lesser evidence from 6 additional studies suggests that short wave, radio station, occupational and digital TV antenna exposures may produce similar neuropsychiatric effects.
Among the more commonly reported changes are sleep disturbance/insomnia, headache, depression/depressive symptoms, fatigue/tiredness,dysesthesia, concentration/attention dysfunction, memory changes, dizziness, irritability, loss of appetite/body weight, restlessness/anxiety, nausea, skin burning/tingling/dermographism and EEG changes.
In summary, then, the mechanism of action of microwave EMFs, the role of the VGCCs in the brain, the impact of non-thermal EMFs on the brain, extensive epidemiological studies performed over the past 50 years, and five criteria testing for causality, all collectively show that various non-thermal microwave EMF exposures produce diverse neuropsychiatric effects.
- Table 4. Commonly Reported Neuropsychiatric Symptoms following Microwave EMF Exposure
Symptom(s) Numbers of studies reporting Sleep disturbance/insomnia 17 Headache 14 Fatigue/tiredness 11 Depression/depressive symptoms 10 Dysesthesia (vision/hearing/olfactory dysfunction) 10 Concentration/attention/ cognitive dysfunction 10 Dizziness/vertigo 9 Memory changes 8 Restlessness/tension/anxiety/ stress/agitation/feeling of discomfort 8 Irritablity 7 Loss of appetite/body weight 6 Skin tingling/burning/inflammation/ dermographism 6 Nausea 5
Joel M. Moskowitz, Ph.D., Director
Center for Family and Community Health
School of Public Health
University of California, Berkeley
Electromagnetic Radiation Safety
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