Thursday, October 08, 2015

"Protect children from EMF" and 17 other new papers in the September issue of Electromagnetic Biology and Medicine, Vol. 34, Issue 3, 2015.

"Protect children from EMF" and 17 other new papers in the September issue of Electromagnetic Biology and Medicine, Vol. 34, Issue 3, 2015.

(I do not have access to these papers.)

Protect children from EMF

Markov M, Grigoriev Y. Protect children from EMF. Electromagn Biol Med. 2015 Sep;34(3):251-256.


The twenty-first century is marked with aggressive development of the wireless communications (satellite, mobile phones, Internet, Wi-Fi). In addition to thousand of satellites that deliver radio and TV signals, large satellite and base station networks secure intensive instant delivery of audio and video information. It is fair to say that the entire civilization, both biosphere and mankind are exposed to continuous exposure of multitude of radiofrequency (RF) signals. It should be taken into account that the entire world population is exposed to exponentially increasing RF radiation from base stations and satellite antennas. While several years ago the potential hazard was connected with placement of mobile phones close to the human head, today "smart phones" represent small, but powerful computers continuously receiving audio and video data. The largest group of users is the children and teenagers who "need" to communicate nearly 24 hours a day. This is even more important because cell phones and tablets may be seen in the hands of children as little as two years in age. There is no way to assess and predict the potential damages to children's brain, vision and hearing under exposure to RF radiation. The WHO precautionary principle and IARC classification must be applied in discussing the potential hazard of the use of today's and tomorrow's communication devices.

Electromagnetic fields: activities in the European Commission with a focus on research projects and the Scientific Committee of Emerging and Newly Identified Health Risks (SCENIHR)

DOI: 10.3109/15368378.2015.1077141
Donata Meroni & Stefan Schreck
pages 171-174
Published online: 07 Oct 2015

The article summarizes the main activities of the European Commission concerning electromagnetic fields. It explains also the regulatory context, with a special focus on past and current research projects funded by the European Union and the role of the SCENIHR in assessing risks related to EMF. Main conclusions of the SCENIHR opinion adopted in 2015 on EMF are reported.


A need to provide explanations for observed biological effects of radiofrequency exposure

C-K. Chou
pages 175-179
Published online: 07 Oct 2015

Although there is scientific consensus that radiofrequency (RF) exposure at high intensity can cause thermal effects, including well-established adverse health effects, there is still considerable controversy on whether low-intensity RF exposure can cause biological effects, especially adverse health effects. The objective of this paper is to describe several reported “non-thermal” effects that were later shown to be due to a weak thermal effect or an experimental artifact by properly conducted and thorough follow-on scientific research. First, the multiple factors that can cause different RF energy absorption in biological tissues are reviewed and second, several examples of experimental artifacts in published papers are described to demonstrate the importance of paying attention to dosimetry and temperature control. For example, isolated nerve response studies show that when temperature of the RF-exposed tissues is controlled, effects disappeared. During RF exposure, conductive electrodes routinely used in physiological studies have been shown to cause field intensification at the tips or contacts of the electrodes with biological tissue; thus, the RF exposure at the site of measurement could be much higher than the incident field. In some in vitro studies, a lack of temperature uniformity in RF-exposed cell cultures and rate of heating explain changes originally reported to be due to low-level RF exposure. In other studies, detailed dosimetry studies have identified artifacts that explain the reasons why so-called “non-thermal” effects were mistakenly reported. Researchers should look for explanations for their own findings, and not expect others to figure out what was the reason for their observed effects.


Near-field radiofrequency electromagnetic exposure assessment

Nina Rubtsova*, Sergey Perov, Olga Belaya, Niels Kuster & Quirino Balzano
pages 180-182
Published online: 07 Oct 2015

Personal wireless telecommunication devices, such as radiofrequency (RF) electromagnetic field (EMF) sources operated in vicinity of human body, have possible adverse health effects. Therefore, the correct EMF assessment is necessary in their near field. According to international near-field measurement criteria, the specific absorption rate (SAR) is used for absorbed energy distribution assessment in tissue simulating liquid phantoms. The aim of this investigation is to validate the relationship between the H-field of incident EMF and absorbed energy in phantoms. Three typical wireless telecommunication system frequencies are considered (900, 1800 and 2450 MHz). The EMF source at each frequency is an appropriate half-wave dipole antenna and the absorbing medium is a flat phantom filled with the suitable tissue simulating liquid. Two methods for SAR estimation have been used: standard procedure based on E-field measured in tissue simulating medium and a proposed evaluation by measuring the incident H-field. Compared SAR estimations were performed for various distances between sources and phantom. Also, these research data were compared with simulation results, obtained by using finite-difference time-domain method. The acquired data help to determine the source near-field space characterized by the smallest deviation between SAR estimation methods. So, this region near the RF source is suitable for correct RF energy absorption assessment using the magnetic component of the RF fields.


An historical overview of the activities in the field of exposure and risk assessment of non-ionizing radiation in Bulgaria

Michel Israel
pages 183-189
Published online: 07 Oct 2015

The exposure and risk evaluation process in Bulgaria concerning non-ionizing radiation health and safety started in the early 1970s. Then, the first research laboratory “Electromagnetic fields in the working environment” was founded in the framework of the Centre of Hygiene, belonging to the Medical Academy, Sofia. The main activities were connected with developing legislation, new equipment for measurement of electromagnetic fields, new methods for measurement and exposure assessment, in vivo and human studies for developing methods, studying the effect of non-ionizing radiation on human body, developing exposure limits. Most of the occupations as metal industry, plastic welding, energetics, physiotherapy, broadcasting, telephone stations, computer industry, etc., have been covered by epidemiological investigations and risk evaluation. In 1986, the ANSI standard for safe use of lasers has been implemented as national legislation that gave the start for studies in the field of risk assessment concerning the use of lasers in industry and medicine. The environmental exposure studies started in 1991 following the very fast implementation of the telecommunication technologies. Now, funds for research are very insignificant, and studies in the field of risk assessment are very few. Nevertheless, Bulgaria has been an active member of the WHO International EMF Project, since 1997, and that gives good opportunity for collaboration with other Member states, and for implementation of new approach in the EMF policy for workers and people’s protection against non-ionizing radiation exposure.


XXIst century magnetotherapy

pages 190-196
Published online: 07 Oct 2015

This paper discusses the state of the art therapeutic application of magnetic and electromagnetic fields (EMF) in treatment of various medical problems – from pain relief to musculoskeletal trauma, to vascular and endocrine disorders. The paper describes problems related to physical parameters of used fields, biophysical dosimetry, clinical protocols, and safety of the device operators. Clinical benefits and mechanisms of action are also discussed.


The role of cell hydration in realization of biological effects of non-ionizing radiation (NIR)

Sinerik Ayrapetyan
pages 197-210
Published online: 07 Oct 2015

The weak knowledge on the nature of cellular and molecular mechanisms of biological effects of NIR such as static magnetic field, infrasound frequency of mechanical vibration, extremely low frequency of electromagnetic fields and microwave serves as a main barrier for adequate dosimetry from the point of Public Health. The difficulty lies in the fact that the biological effects of NIR depend not only on their thermodynamic characteristics but also on their frequency and intensity “windows”, chemical and physical composition of the surrounding medium, as well as on the initial metabolic state of the organism. Therefore, only biomarker can be used for adequate estimation of biological effect of NIR on organisms. Because of the absence of such biomarker(s), organizations having the mission to monitor hazardous effects of NIR traditionally base their instruction on thermodynamic characteristics of NIR. Based on the high sensitivity to NIR of both aqua medium structure and cell hydration, it is suggested that cell bathing medium is one of the primary targets and cell hydration is a biomarker for NIR effects on cells and organisms. The purpose of this article is to present a short review of literature and our own experimental data on the effects of NIR on plants’ seeds germination, microbe growth and development, snail neurons and heart muscle, rat’s brain and heart tissues.


Change of growth pattern, metabolism, and quality and quantity of maize plants after irrigation with magnetically treated water
Ghanati, S. Mohamadalikhani, M. Soleimani, R. Afzalzadeh & A. Hajnorouzi
pages 211-215
Published online: 07 Oct 2015

Water molecules can be affected by magnetic fields (MF) due to their bipolar characteristics. In the present study maize plants, from sowing to the end period of generative stage, were irrigated with magnetically treated water (MTW).Tap water was treated with MF by passing through a locally designed alternative magnetic field generating apparatus (110 mT). Irrigation with MTW increased the ear length and fresh weight, 100-grain fresh and dry weights, and water productivity (119.5%, 119.1%, 114.2%, 116.6% and 122.3%, respectively), compared with the control groups. Levels of photosynthetic pigments i.e. chlorophyll a and b, and the contents of anthocyanin and flavonoids of the leaves were increased compared to those of non-treated ones. Increase of the activity of superoxide dismutase (SOD) and ascorbate peroxidase (APX) in leaves of the treated plants efficiently scavenged active oxygen species and resulted in the maintenance of photosynthetic membranes and reduction of malondealdehyde. Total ferritin, sugar, iron and calcium contents of kernels of MTW-irrigated plants were respectively 122.9%, 167.4%, 235% and 185% of the control ones. From the results presented here it can be concluded that the influence of MF on living plant cells, at least in part, is mediated by water. The results also suggest that irrigation of maize plant with MTW can be applied as a useful method for improvement of quantity and quality of it.


Investigation on the effect of static magnetic field up to 30 mT on viability percent, proliferation rate and IC50 of HeLa and fibroblast cells

Jaber Zafari, Fatemeh Javani Jouni, Parviz Abdolmaleki, Amir Jalali & Mohammad Javad Khodayar
pages 216-220
Published online: 07 Oct 2015

We have investigated the effects of static magnetic field (SMF) on the viability of the human cervical cancer (HeLa) cell line and fibroblast cells. The cells were cultured in DMEM medium and treated several times (24, 48,72 and 96 h) and at several intensities (5, 10, 20 and 30 mT) of magnetic field (MF). The cytotoxicity and cell viability percent in treated cells were performed using MTT assay by evaluating mitochondrial dehydrogenase activity. The MF ability on inducing cell death or inhibiting biochemical function was reported as cell death percent. The results showed that the increase of MF intensity and the time that cells were exposed to this treatment increased sharply cell death percent and proliferation rate in HeLa cell compare to fibroblast cells. Our data suggest that SMF biological effects on cell death were different in our selected targets. Cell type and time of exposure have been therefore found to be significant factors. These findings could be used to improve new effective method using SMF in conjunction with the common therapeutic approaches.


Occupational exposure of personnel operating military radio equipment: measurements and simulation

Annamaria Paljanos, Simona Miclaus & Calin Munteanu
pages 221-227
Published online: 07 Oct 2015

Technical literature provides numerous studies concerning radiofrequency exposure measurements for various radio communication devices, but there are few studies related to exposure of personnel operating military radio equipment. In order to evaluate exposure and identify cases when safety requirements are not entirely met, both measurements and simulations are needed for accurate results. Moreover, given the technical characteristics of the radio devices used in the military, personnel mainly operate in the near-field region so both measurements and simulation becomes more complex. Measurements were made in situ using a broadband personal exposimeter equipped with two isotropic probes for both electric and magnetic components of the field. The experiment was designed for three different operating frequencies of the same radio equipment, while simulations were made in FEKO software using hybrid numerical methods to solve complex electromagnetic field problems. The paper aims to discuss the comparative results of the measurements and simulation, as well as comparing them to reference levels specified in military or civilian radiofrequency exposure standards.


Thermo-induced modifications and selective accumulation of glucose-conjugated magnetic nanoparticles in vivo in rats – increasing the effectiveness of magnetic-assisted therapy – pilot study

L. Traikov, I. Antonov, A. Geroua, L. Vesselinova, R. Hadjiolova & J. Raynov
pages 228-232
Published online: 07 Oct 2015

Ferro-Magnetic nanoparticles (Fe-MNP) have gained a lot of attention in biomedical and industrial applications due to their biocompatibility, ease of surface modification and paramagnetic properties. The basic idea of our study is whether it is possible to use glucose-conjugate Fe-MNP (Glc-Fe-MNP) for targeting and more accurate focusing in order to increase the effect of high-frequency electromagnetic fields induced hyperthermia in solid tumors. Tumors demonstrate high metabolic activity for glucose in comparison with other somatic cells.Increasing of accumulation of glucose conjugated (Glc)-Fe-MNP on tumor site and precision of radio frequency electro-magnetic field (RF–EMF) energy absorption in solid tumors, precede RF–EMF induced hyperthermia. Rat model for monitoring the early development of breast cancer. Twenty female Wistar rats (MU-line-6171) were divided into two groups of 10 rats that were either treated with N-methyl-N-nitrosourea to induce breast cancer and 10 with carrageenan to induce inflammation (control). Glc-Fe-MNP can offer a solution to increase hyperthermia effect to the desired areas in the body by accumulation and increasing local concentration due to high tissue metabolic assimilation. In this condition, it is considered that the magnetization of the nanoparticles is a single-giant magnetic moment, the sum of all the individual magnetic moments and is proportional to the concentration of Glc-Fe-MNP.


The treatment of tendon injury with electromagnetic fields evidenced by advanced ultrasound image processing

Richard Parker* & Marko Markov
pages 233-237
Published online: 07 Oct 2015

This article presents a novel modality for accelerating the repair of tendon and ligament lesions by means of a specifically designed electromagnetic field in an equine model. This novel therapeutic approach employs a delivery system that induces a specific electrical signal from an external magnetic field derived from Superconductive QUantum Interference Device (SQUID) measurements of injured vs. healthy tissue. Evaluation of this therapy technique is enabled by a proposed new technology described as Predictive Analytical Imagery (PAI™). This technique examines an ultrasound grayscale image and seeks to evaluate it by means of look-ahead predictive algorithms and digital signal processing. The net result is a significant reduction in background noise and the production of a high-resolution grayscale or digital image.


Body mass index as a risk prediction and prevention factor for professional mixed low-intensity EMF burden
Lyubina Vesselinova
pages 238-243
Published online: 07 Oct 2015

The exposure conditions in the physiotherapy are characterized with various sources emitting electromagnetic fields (EMF) in different frequency ranges. Very little is known about the exposure modalities' influence on the operators. In this article, we present the effects of EMF on personnel morbidity profile dependent on the body mass index (BMI) increase. By cross-tabulation, the role of higher BMI on enhancing the EMF vulnerability potential is confirmed. The correlation of the higher BMI with some serious diseases and conditions’ development has been evidenced statistically significant. Вy the whole-studied group, a general tendency for allergy, cardiovascular diseases, sleep disruption and age-shortened menopause, as well as allergy and leiomyoma in the expositional criteria subgroups (ESG), formed for the purposes of this study, is evidenced. The three ESGs are formed on work residence duration in the electrolight therapy section. The first – up to four working hour daily, the second – the entire working day (7 h) and the third group is not residenced in the electrolight therapy section. We hypothesize two signaling ways of interaction of the chronically low-intensity EMF and the higher BMI as the most likely: hormonal – by melatonin levels decrease due to estrogen levels increasing and endocrine – mast-cells auto replication and degranulation stimulation. Based on the results of the study, the BMI increase as an observed control factor in the prediction of the professional risk can be recommended.


Extremely low frequency (ELF) stray magnetic fields of laboratory equipment: a possible co-exposure conducting experiments on cell cultures
Iván Gresits, Péter Pál Necz, Gábor Jánossy & György Thuróczy
pages 244-250
Published online: 07 Oct 2015

Measurements of extremely low frequency (ELF) magnetic fields were conducted in the environment of commercial laboratory equipment in order to evaluate the possible co-exposure during the experimental processes on cell cultures. Three types of device were evaluated: a cell culture CO2 incubator, a thermostatic water bath and a laboratory shaker table. These devices usually have electric motors, heating wires and electronic control systems, therefore may expose the cell cultures to undesirable ELF stray magnetic fields. Spatial distributions of magnetic field time domain signal waveform and frequency spectral analysis (FFT) were processed. Long- and short-term variation of stray magnetic field was also evaluated under normal use of investigated laboratory devices. The results show that the equipment under test may add a considerable ELF magnetic field to the ambient environmental magnetic field or to the intentional exposure to ELF, RF or other physical/chemical agents. The maximum stray magnetic fields were higher than 3 µT, 20 µT and 75 µT in the CO2 incubator, in water bath and on the laboratory shaker table, respectively, with high variation of spatial distribution and time domain. Our investigation emphasizes possible confounding factors conducting cell culture studies related to low-level ELF-EMF exposure due to the existing stray magnetic fields in the ambient environment of laboratory equipment.


Electromagnetic fields from mobile phone base station – variability analysis

Pawel Bienkowski & Bartlomiej Zubrzak
pages 257-261
Published online: 07 Oct 2015

The article describes the character of electromagnetic field (EMF) in mobile phone base station (BS) surroundings and its variability in time with an emphasis on the measurement difficulties related to its pulse and multi-frequency nature. Work also presents long-term monitoring measurements performed recently in different locations in Poland – small city with dispersed building development and in major polish city – dense urban area. Authors tried to determine the trends in changing of EMF spectrum analyzing daily changes of measured EMF levels in those locations. Research was performed using selective electromagnetic meters and also EMF meter with spectrum analysis.


Subjective symptoms and their evolution in a small group of magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) operators recently engagedDOI:10.3109/15368378.2015.1076442
G. Zanotti*, G. Ligabue & F. Gobba
pages 262-264
Published online: 07 Oct 2015

Using a specific questionnaire, we examined subjective symptoms in a group of 17 physicians (9 males and 8 females, mean age 32.9 ± 3.71), attending a Postgraduate Medical School in Radiology and engaged in MRI for less than 1 year. Sixteen subjects (94%) reported the presence of at least one of the investigated symptoms during the period of MRI activity. The main symptoms were: unusual drowsiness/tiredness (88%), concentration problems (82%), headaches (76%), sleep disorders (47%), nausea (47%), illusion of movement (47%) and dizziness/vertigo (35%); the former two were subjectively related to MRI by the majority of the operators. These symptoms appeared (or worsened) in more than 15 min and, in the vast majority disappeared 30 min, or more, after the end of exposure. In 13 subjects (81%), the symptom (or some symptoms) appeared at least weekly. In this small group of health care workers recently exposed to MRI, the prevalence of subjective symptoms was higher than reported in other similar studies but, notably, the majority of subjects (77%) reported a regression within 4–8 weeks, suggesting some form of adaptation.


Radiofrequency electromagnetic radiation exposure inside the metro tube infrastructure in Warszawa

Krzysztof Gryz & Jolanta Karpowicz
pages 265-273
Published online: 07 Oct 2015

Antennas from various wireless communications systems [e.g. mobile phones base transceiver stations (BTS) and handsets used by passengers, public Internet access, staff radiophone transmitters used between engine-drivers and traffic operators] emitting radiofrequency electromagnetic radiation (RF-EMR) are used inside underground metro public transportation. Frequency-selective exposimetric investigations of RF-EMR exposure inside the metro infrastructure in Warsaw (inside metro cars passing between stations and on platforms) were performed. The statistical parameters of exposure to the E-field were analyzed for each frequency range and for a total value (representing the wide-band result of measurements of complex exposure). The recorded exposimetric profiles showed the dominant RF-EMR sources: handsets and BTS of mobile communication systems (GSM 900 and UMTS 2100) and local wireless Internet access (WiFi 2G). Investigations showed that the GSM 900 system is the dominant source of exposure – BTS (incessantly active) on platforms, and handsets – used by passengers present nearby during the tube drive. The recorded E-field varies between sources (for BTS were: medians – 0.22 V/m and 75th percentile – 0.37 V/m; and for handsets: medians – 0.28 V/m and 75th percentile – 0.47 V/m). Maximum levels (peaks) of exposure recorded from mobile handsets exceeded 10 V/m (upper limit of used exposimeters). Broadband measurements of E-field, including the dominant signal emitted by staff radiophones (151 MHz), showed that the level of this exposure of engine-drivers does not exceed 2.5 V/m.


Dynamics of the public concern and risk communication program implementation

Victoria Zaryabova* & Michel Israela
pages 274-277
Published online: 07 Oct 2015

The public concern about electromagnetic field (EMF) exposure varies due to different reasons. A part of them are connected with the better and higher quality of information that people receive from science, media, Internet, social networks, industry, but others are based on good communication programs performed by the responsible institutions, administration and persons. Especially, in Bulgaria, public concern follows interesting changes, some of them in correlation with the European processes of concern, but others following the economic and political processes in the country. Here, we analyze the dynamics of the public concern over the last 10 years. Our explanation of the decrease of the people’s complaints against EMF exposure from base stations for mobile communication is as a result of our risk communication program that is in implementation for >10 years.


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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