Wednesday, August 10, 2022

Recent Research on Wireless Radiation and Electromagnetic Fields

I have been circulating abstracts of newly-published scientific papers on radio frequency and and other non-ionizing electromagnetic fields (EMF) about once a month since 2016. Several hundred EMF scientists around the world receive these updates. 

The complete collection contains more than 1,600 abstracts and links to more than 1,800 papers. 

You can download the complete collection of abstracts, a 1,334-page document (pdf) by clicking on the following link:


The abstracts for the most recent papers appear below.

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Evidence for a health risk by RF on humans living around mobile phone base stations

Balmori, A. Evidence for a health risk by RF on humans living around mobile phone base stations: From radiofrequency sickness to cancer. Environmental Research (2022), doi: 10.1016/j.envres.2022.113851.

Abstract

The objective of this work was to perform a complete review of the existing scientific literature to update the knowledge on the effects of base station antennas on humans. Studies performed in real urban conditions, with mobile phone base stations situated close to apartments, were selected. Overall results of this review show three types of effects by base station antennas on the health of people: radiofrequency sickness (RS), cancer (C) and changes in biochemical parameters (CBP). Considering all the studies reviewed globally (n=38), 73.6% (28/38) showed effects: 73.9% (17/23) for radiofrequency sickness, 76.9% (10/13) for cancer and 75.0% (6/8) for changes in biochemical parameters. Furthermore, studies that did not meet the strict conditions to be included in this review provided important supplementary evidence. The existence of similar effects from studies by different sources (but with RF [radio frequency radiation] of similar characteristics), such as radar, radio and television antennas, wireless smart meters and laboratory studies, reinforce the conclusions of this review. Of special importance are the studies performed on animals or trees near base station antennas that cannot be aware of their proximity and to which psychosomatic effects can never be attributed.

Excerpts

Introduction: During the last few decades, hundreds of thousands of mobile phone base stations and other types of wireless communications antennas have been installed around the world, in cities and in nature, including protected natural areas, in addition to pre-existing antennas (television, radio broadcasting, radar, etc.). Only the aesthetic aspects or urban regulations have been generally considered in this deployment, while the biological, environmental and health impacts of the associated non-ionizing electromagnetic radiation emissions have not been assessed so far. Therefore, the effects on humans living around these anthropogenic electromagnetic field sources (antennas) have not been considered.

In France, there is a significant contribution of mobile phone base stations in the exposure to radiofrequency electromagnetic fields (RF-EMF) of urban citizens living nearby (De Giudici et al., 2021). Some studies from India indicate that more than 15% of people have levels of EMF strength above 12 V/m due to their proximity to antennas (Premlal and Eldhose, 2017). Exposure estimates have shown that RF-EMF from mobile telephone systems is stronger in urban than in rural areas. For instance, in Sweden the levels of RF radiation have increased considerably in recent years, both outdoor and indoor, due to new telecommunication technologies, and the median power density measured for RF fields between 30 MHz and 3 GHz was 16 μW/m2 in rural areas, 270 μW/m2 in urban areas and 2400 μW/m2 in city areas (Hardell et al., 2018). Total exposure varies not only between urban and rural areas but also, depending on residential characteristics, between different floors of a building, with a tendency for building exposure to increase at higher floors (Breckenkamp et al., 2012).

Over the past five decades, and more intensively since the beginning of this century, many studies and several reviews have been published on the effects of anthropogenic electromagnetic radiation on humans living around the antennas. The first studies were carried out with radio and television antennas, investigating increases in cancer and leukaemia (Milham, 1988; Maskarinec et al., 1994; Hocking et al., 1996; Dolk et al., 1997a, 1997b; Michelozzi et al., 1998; Altpeter et al., 2000), as well as around radars (Kolodynski and Kolodynska, 1996; Goldsmith, 1997).

Regarding base station antennas, there are scientific discrepancies in their effects: some studies concluded that there are no health-related effects (e.g. Augner and Hacker, 2009; Blettner et al., 2009; Röösli et al., 2010; Baliatsas et al., 2016) whereas others found increases in cancer and other health problems in humans living around antennas (e.g. Santini et al., 2002; Navarro et al., 2003; Bortkiewicz et al., 2004; Eger et al., 2004; Wolf and Wolf, 2004; Abdel-Rassoul et al., 2007; Khurana et al., 2010; Dode et al., 2011; Shinjyo and Shinjyo, 2014; Gandhi et al., 2015; López et al., 2021; Rodrigues et al., 2021). There is a specific symptomatology linked to radar and RF exposure at low levels, characterized by functional disturbances of the central nervous system (headache, sleep disturbance, discomfort, irritability, depression, memory loss, dizziness, fatigue, nausea, appetite loss, difficulty in concentration, dizziness, etc.), that has been termed ‘RF sickness’ (Lilienfeld et al., 1978; Johnson Lyakouris, 1998; Navarro et al., 2003).

Methods: Only studies performed in real urban conditions, with mobile phone base stations situated close to apartments, were selected. Studies conducted in larger regions with numerous antennas, based on surveys and geographic data, were also included.

Results: The studies that met the selected criteria are presented in chronological order in Table 1, catalogued as Y/N depending on whether or not they found effects. The selected studies cover three types of effects: radiofrequency sickness (RS) (according to Lilienfeld et al., 1978; Johnson Lyakouris, 1998), cancer (C) and changes in biochemical parameters (CBP). Table 1 also includes the authors, year and country, antenna type, study design, diseases and symptoms found/not found and the main conclusions of each study.

Discussion: Considering all the selected studies (n=38), 73.6% (28/38) showed effects: 73.9% (17/23) for radiofrequency sickness, 76.9% (10/13) for cancer and 75.0% (6/8) for changes in biochemical parameters (Figure 1). Therefore, most of the studies carried by research groups from twenty different countries reach the same conclusions.

For the reasons previously explained, the following studies (n=85) were not considered in this review, even though the conclusions of some of these studies will be discussed later due
to their importance regarding the similarities of the electromagnetic radiation types involved and the effects found in many cases....

The results of this review show three types of effects by base station antennas on the health of humans: radiofrequency sickness, cancer and changes in biochemical parameters (Fig. 1). From among all these studies, most of them found effects (73.6%). Thus, despite some limitations and differences in study design, statistical measures, risk estimates and exposure categories (Khurana et al., 2010), together they provide a consistent view of the effects on the health of people living in the vicinity of base station antennas.

The International Commission on Non-Ionizing Radiation Protection (ICNIRP) is a private organization that issues exposure guidelines that are then adopted by governments, but it has been accused of having conflicts of interest (Hardell and Carlberg, 2020; Hardell et al., 2021). The ICNIRP (2010, 2020) limits are thousands of times above the levels where effects are recorded for both extremely low frequency and RF man-made EMF and account only for thermal effects, whereas the vast majority of recorded effects are non-thermal. These existing guidelines for public health protection only consider the effects of acute intense (thermal) exposures and do not protect from lower level long-term exposures (Israel et al., 2011; Yakimenko et al., 2011; Blank et al., 2015; Starkey, 2016; Belpomme and Irigaray, 2022). The exposure duration is crucial to assess the induced effects. 

Conclusion:  In the current circumstances, it seems that the scientific experts in the field are very clear about the serious problems we are facing and have expressed this through important appeals (Blank et al., 2015; Hardell and Nyberg, 2020). However, the media, the responsible organizations (World Health Organization, 2015) and the governments are not transmitting this crucial information to the population, who remain uninformed. For these reasons, the current situation will probably end in a crisis not only for health but also for the technology itself, as it is unsustainable and harmful to the environment and the people.


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Immunotoxicity of radiofrequency radiation (Review)

Himanshi Yadav, Radhey Shyam Sharma, Rajeev Singh. Immunotoxicity of radiofrequency radiation. Environmental Pollution. 2022. doi: 10.1016/j.envpol.2022.119793.

Highlights

• Drastic growth in communication technologies increased RFR exposure in environment
• Recent evidences show close relation among radiation sensitivity and immune effects
• An intracellular signaling cascade responsible for RFR action on immune system is suggested
• A better understanding of RFR linked cell effects might help radiation protection
• Urgent need to recognize probable hazards of using RFR emitting devices in excess

Abstract

Growing evidence recommends that radiofrequency radiations might be a new type of environmental pollutant. The consequences of RFR on the human immune system have gained considerable interest in recent years, not only to examine probable negative effects on health but also to understand if RFR can modulate the immune response positively. Although several studies have been published on the immune effects of RFR but no satisfactory agreement has been reached. Hence this review aims to evaluate the RFR modulating impacts on particular immune cells contributing to various innate or adaptive immune responses. In view of existing pieces of evidence, we have suggested an intracellular signaling cascade responsible for RFR action. The bio-effects of RFR on immune cell morphology, viability, proliferation, genome integrity, and immune functions such as ROS, cytokine secretion, phagocytosis, apoptosis, etc. are discussed. The majority of existing evidence point toward the possible shifts in the activity, number, and/or function of immunocompetent cells, but the outcome of several studies is still contradictory and needs further studies to reach a conclusion. Also, the direct association of experimental studies to human risks might not be helpful as exposure parameters vary in real life. On the basis of recent available literature, we suggest that special experiments should be designed to test each particular signal utilized in communication technologies to rule out the hypothesis that longer exposure to RFR emitting devices would affect the immunity by inducing genotoxic effects in human immune cells.

Concluding remarks

I. Till date, the bulk of available research articles remarkably indicated the RFR-induced changes in innate and adaptive immune responses. The morphological and physiological modulations in the immune cells were reported such as variation in viability, gene and protein expression, generation of ROS, induction of DNA damage, stimulation of inflammatory markers, altered normal immune functions and eventually provoking inflammatory reactions, chronic allergic reactions, autoimmune responses leading to damaged tissues and organs.

II. The oxidative stress via causing free radical damage to DNA appears to be the main mechanism for RFR action.

III. Many RFR studies showed conflicting conclusions because of the scarcity of subjects, variations in distance from the radiation source, exposure time, RFR frequency, mode of modulation, SAR, or power density used in various studies. Furthermore, studies even with the same experimental design showed varied responses in different types of cells.

IV. On the other hand, the findings from in vitro and in vivo studies on RFR should not be directly linked to human mobile phone usage as the duration and level of exposure to radiofrequency radiation were much higher in experimental studies as compared to what people experience with even high cell phone usage.

V. Collectively, in view of discussed limitations, the available research studies might not be enough to understand the RFR effect on the immune system.

VI. Since, the controversies exist in the recent literature on the effects of RFR on immune cell physiology, substantially more coordinated and detailed studies are needed to set up a definitive trend in RFR effects on immune cells. 

Such studies are also required to address the important issues of safety for the usage of technologies like cell phones and wireless equipment that are used increasingly in our everyday lives and to revise the current EMF public safety limits.


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Use of mobile phones and progression of glioma incidence since 1979

My notes: 

Although the title of this IARC report is in German, the report is available in English. The report's summary, "no indications of a detectable effect of mobile phones have been found,"  seems misleading because it is inconsistent with the report's final conclusion, namely "An increased risk in the 10% heaviest mobile phone users was an exception to this general situation, as it remained plausible."

The report's bottom line: "This ecological data is not sufficient to dismiss every potential mobile phone related risk scenario, but suggests that the risk – if it exists - would be very small, only occur after very long latency periods of several decades, or only affect small subgroups within glioma patients." 

If only a portion of the population has a genetic susceptibility to brain cancer in the presence of microwave radiation as may be the case with thyroid cancer (Luo et al., 2020), that could explain why the odds ratios obtained for brain cancer risk from case-control studies of heavy, long-term mobile phone users over-predict glioma incidence in the overall population based upon tumor registry data.

* Luo J, Li H, Deziel NC, Huang H, Zhao N, Ma S, Nie X, Udelsman R, Zhang Y. Genetic susceptibility may modify the association between cell phone use and thyroid cancer: A population-based case-control study in Connecticut. Environmental Research. 2020 Mar;182:109013. doi: 10.1016/j.envres.2019.109013.

Deltour I, Schuz J. Nutzung von Mobiltelefonen und Verlauf der Gliom-Inzidenz seit 1979: Vorhaben 3618S00000 (FM 8867). International Agency for Research on Cancer. Jun 2022.

Summary

1.1 Introduction

In the Nordic countries, the sharp increase in the use of mobile phone occurred in the mid-1990s among adults; thus, time trends in glioma incidence rates (IR) may provide information about possible risks associated with mobile phone use. We investigated time trends in IR of glioma, and compared IR and observed number of cases to those that would be expected under a range of hypothetical mobile phone risk scenarios, encompassing risk levels reported in published case-control studies.

1.2 Methods

We analyzed age standardised IR of glioma in Denmark, Finland, Norway, and Sweden among adults 20-84 years old, using data from national cancer registries and population data covering the period 1979-2016, using a log linear joinpoint analysis. Exposure distribution of use and of high level of use were obtained from self-reported information in the Nordic Interphone, the Cosmos-Denmark and the Cosmos-France datasets. Based on analytical epidemiological studies, we considered various scenarios according to which mobile phone use would hypothetically increase the glioma risk. We quantified compatibility, or absence of compatibility between the observed data and the risk scenarios by projecting incidence rates of glioma of men aged 40-69 years old under these scenarios and comparing them with the observed incidence rates in the Nordic countries.

1.3 Results

Glioma IR increased regularly with annual percent change (APC) of 0.6 (95% confidence interval (CI) 0.4-0.7) in men and 0.3 (95%CI 0.2-0.5) in women in the period 1979-2016. There were hardly any changes in IR among men and women below age 59. In men and women in their sixties, IR increased by 0.6 (95%CI 0.4-0.9) in men and 0.4 (95%CI 0.2-0.7) in women, regularly for the whole period of observation, while IR among 70-84 years old increased very markedly, with APC of 3.1 (95%CI 2.6-3.5) among men and 2.8 (95%CI 2.3-3.3) among women over at least the last 2 decades of observation. Very few risk scenarios appeared compatible with the observed data using standardised incidence ratios analyses. The risk scenarios that appeared compatible involved either long latencies (20 years), or very low risks (RR = 1.08); in these projections, risks that would be limited to mobile phone heavy users were not compatible with the observed number of cases.

1.4 Discussion

IR time trends did not demonstrate breakpoints in their secular evolution in the last 20 years. Virtually all the reported results from the case-control studies with a positive association between mobile phone use and glioma risk were shown to be implausible in our simulations comparing them with the observed incidence rates, implying that biases and errors have likely distorted their findings; very low risks at the population level, and risks after very long latencies remained plausible. Simulations were based on high quality case registration, which is a strength, while the uncertainties in the exposure information and the limited information about some of the model’s assumptions were limitations. Altogether, this study confirms and reinforces conclusions made previously, that no indications of a detectable effect of mobile phones have been found.

Excerpts

... We analyzed the time trends in the incidence rates of glioma among adults aged 20 to 84 years of the Nordic countries from 1979 to 2016 (step 1 of the work description). Then, we addressed the question whether the observed time trends and observed number of cases were statistically different from the one we would observe if we assumed that the use of mobile phones caused glioma, so if we assumed that there was a true causal association (step 2 and step 3 of the work description). Within this, we delineated the levels of risks and the duration of induction periods that would not be compatible with the observed time trends and numbers of cases in this population (step 3 of the work description). We also discussed these findings in light of some of the elevated OR found in the literature. The study tested the consistency between risks that have been reported and the effect they would have had at the level of the population, had they been true. Noteworthy, the study was not meant to dismiss every single hypothetical association, as it would most likely always be possible to devise a pattern of risk that would fit the data....

This study was based on 28,015 male and 20,630 female glioma cases diagnosed from 1979 to 2016 in Denmark, Finland, Norway and Sweden (called “the Nordic countries” in the following). In 2016, the number of glioma cases was 1,724 in a population of 19.7 million adults aged 20–84 years. Over the last 10 years of data, Sweden accounted for 38% of the population and of the cases; of the remainder, Denmark, Finland, and Norway had populations of similar size. The age-standardized incidence rates were higher in men (9.1 per 100000 person years) than in women (6.1 per 100 000 person years), and higher with increasing age. All countries had comparable rates; Norway had slightly higher rates, while Finland had slightly lower rates in both sexes (Table 2 and Table 3).

Joinpoint analyses described in paragraph 6.1 showed that overall, the trends were smooth: glioma rates increased by 0.6% (95% CI 0.4%-0.7%) per year in men and 0.3% (95% CI 0.2%-0.5%) per year in women over the period 1979-2016 in the Nordic countries combined (Table 4 and Table 5), and in each country separately except for a marked increase in 1979-1984 in Swedish men (APC about 6%). For the younger age groups (20-39 and 40-59 years old), the time trends were smooth and did not demonstrate strong increases at any point in time during the period 1979 to 2016 in any country among men (Table 6), and women (Table 7). Below the age of 60, incidence rates were generally stable over the whole period (Figure 1, Table 6 and Table 7). Among people aged 60-69 years old, incidence rates increased gradually by 0.6% in men and 0.4% in women per year, and these regular increases with no joinpoint were observed in every country and at a very similar rate in both sexes, except among Swedish women, whose rates showed a slight decrease. Irregular patterns were observed among the persons aged 70-84 years old at the beginning of the observation period, while for at least the last 12 years of observation, all countries showed highly increasing rates. Exceptions to this general pattern were noted among the Finnish males and the Norwegian females, in which an increase was seen at the beginning of the observation period that lasted at least 21 years.

The analysis by subgroups of tumour types could be performed only for the period 1990-2016 for reasons of data availability: in Sweden, a separate code for glioblastoma did not exist prior to 1993, and very few of the tumours which had been diagnosed during the period 1990-1992 were retrospectively coded into this code. Indeed, cancer registries are continuously updated when additional information becomes available on an earlier diagnosis, for example.

Among men and women, the rates of glioblastomas increased in the last years of observations, while the rate of other high-grade gliomas decreased (Table 8 and Table 9). Rates of low grade gliomas were relatively stable in all countries since the mid 1990’s except in Denmark, where substantial increases were noted towards the end of the period of observation, albeit non-significant....

When examining the trends by subtypes, glioblastoma generally increased while other high grade gliomas decreased, and low grade glioma were stable in the most recent period, except in Denmark where low grade glioma rates increased among men and women in the last 3 years of observation. In Sweden, the rates of glioblastoma underwent most changes, namely the increase in glioblastoma rates in Sweden in the years after the introduction of that code by the cancer registry, since a new code is not mandatorily fully used immediately after it is introduced....

To sum up, our simplified and more sophisticated analyses appeared to indicate that the small increase in IR of men age 40-59 and the marked increase in RR of men aged 60-69 were generally not compatible with the same mobile phone related risks increases. When models in which the totality of the IR increases were assumed to be associated with mobile phone effects, a RR of 1.31 that would start 20 years after first using a mobile phone was borderline compatible between these 2 age groups, while all other induction periods (0, 5, 10, 15 years) or heavy users risk scenarios produced RR estimates and CI which did not overlap between the 2 age groups when the same exposure distribution was considered. When half of the IR increases were attributed to other factors, none of the mobile phone related risks scenarios were compatible with the data, in the SIR analyses (assuming the same risk in both age groups). When most (75%) of the IR increases were attributed to other factors, then small excess risks (RR= 1.08 applying to all users after 10 years) or risks after long latencies (RR = 1.3 applying to all users after 20 years) were compatible with the observed incidence rates and exposure distributions that we assumed. Further work on these scenarios could shed more light on the remaining uncertainties. Of note, scenarios of risks limited to heavy users groups did not appear compatible with the observed number of cases in these analyses....

Our simulation study is not free of assumptions. The induction period relating mobile phone use and glioma risk, if such an association exists, is unknown, so is the magnitude of the risk, and the real patterns may be more complex than the scenarios that we simulated. In addition, there are several factors that we did not account for. The coverage of the Nordic cancer registries was not complete, but some 1.5% to 10% of the malignant tumours were missed in this age group. In Sweden, it has been estimated that completeness would not have changed over the period 1998-2014, while completeness might have improved in other countries. We modelled that other, yet to be discovered, risk factors of the disease as well as improvement in its detection and reporting had a smooth, gradual impact, over the period 19792016, which is consistent with the gradually increasing IR. We used 3 sources of information on the use of mobile phones, all self-reported, to evaluate the prevalence of use and heavy use up to 2002, 2008 or 2016 and extrapolated the prevalences for the periods and age groups for which no data was available, based on the trends observed in the other age groups. The use of hands-free devices was not accounted for, although this was not frequent in these populations (data not shown).

In conclusion, it is difficult to demonstrate the absence of risk, in real life condition, and assumptions about the impact of the improvement of diagnosis tools, treatment and registration changes over time were used in our simulations. However, based both on the observed IR and the simulations, we reiterate and strengthen our previous conclusion that, the risk, should one exist, ought to be lower or occur after a longer induction period or act on a smaller population, or a combination of these, than most of the level of risk that have been reported in previously published case-control studies.

Conclusions

In this project we projected incidence rates of glioma under various scenarios of mobile phone-associated increased glioma risks, and compared them with the observed incidence rates in the Nordic countries. The comparison was carried out on the data of men aged 40 to 69 years. The modelled scenarios included risk increases reported from analytical epidemiological studies, which were all of case-control design. Most of those results were shown to be implausible in our simulations, implying that biases and errors in the self-reported use of mobile phones have likely distorted their findings. An increased risk in the 10% heaviest mobile phone users was an exception to this general situation, as it remained plausible. Results of cohort studies showing no association were compatible with observed incidence rates. We also studied what hypothetical mobile phone-related risks were conceivable if the changes in incidence rates in 40-59 year old and 60-69 year old men were fully attributable to mobile phone use. The fact that we observed different hypothetical risks in these two age groups while research at present has not suggested that older men should have higher risk related to mobile phone use than younger men, does not align with the assumption that mobile phone exposures caused the incidence rate trends. This ecological data is not sufficient to dismiss every potential mobile phone related risk scenario, but suggests that the risk – if it exists - would be very small, only occur after very long latency periods of several decades, or only affect small subgroups within glioma patients.

Open access report: https://doris.bfs.de/jspui/bitstream/urn:nbn:de:0221-2022063033222/4/BfS_2022_3618S00000.pdf

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Improvement of several stress response and sleep quality hormones in men and women after sleeping in a bed that protects against electromagnetic fields

Díaz-Del Cerro E, Félix J, Tresguerres J, De la Fuente M. Improvement of several stress response and sleep quality hormones in men and women after sleeping in a bed that protects against electromagnetic fields. Environ Health. 2022 Jul 22;21(1):72. doi: 10.1186/s12940-022-00882-8.

Abstract

Background: The electromagnetic fields (EMFs) emitted by the technologies affect the homeostatic systems (nervous, endocrine, and immune systems) and consequently the health. In a previous work, we observed that men and women, after 2 months of using a bed with a registered HOGO system, that prevents and drain EMFs, improved their immunity, redox and inflammatory states and rejuvenated their rate of aging or biological age. Since, EMFs can act as a chronic stressor stimulus, and affect the sleep quality. The objective of this work was to study in men and women (23-73 years old) the effect of sleeping for 2 months on that bed in the blood concentrations of several hormones related to stress response and sleep quality as well as to corroborate the rejuvenation of their biological age.

Methods: In 18 men and women, plasma concentration of cortisol, dehydroepiandrosterone (DHEA), catecholamines (epinephrine, norepinephrine and dopamine), serotonin, oxytocin and melatonin were analyzed before and after 2 months of using the HOGO beds. A group of 10 people was used as placebo control. In another cohort of 25 men (20 experimental and 5 placebo), the effects of rest on the HOGO system on the concentration of cortisol and testosterone in plasma were studied. In all these volunteers, the biological age was analyzed using the Immunity Clock model.

Results: There is a significant increase in plasma concentration of DHEA, norepinephrine, serotonin, oxytocin, and melatonin as well as in testosterone, after resting for 2 months in that bed with the EMFs avoiding system. In addition, decreases in Cortisol/DHEA and Testosterone/cortisol ratio and plasma dopamine concentration were observed. No differences were found in placebo groups. In all participants that slept on HOGO beds, the biological age was reduced.

Conclusions: Sleeping in a bed that isolates from EMFs and drain them can be a possible strategy to improve the secretion of hormones related to a better response to stress and sleep quality, which means a better endocrine system, and consequently better homeostasis and maintenance of health. This fact was confirmed with the slowdown in the rate of aging checked with a rejuvenation of the biological age.


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Empirical Study of the Stochastic Nature of Electromagnetic Field Exposure in Massive MIMO Systems (5G)

F. Héliot, T. H. Loh, D. Cheadle, Y. Gui, M. Dieudonne. An Empirical Study of the Stochastic Nature of Electromagnetic Field Exposure in Massive MIMO Systems. IEEE Access, vol. 10, pp. 63100-63112, 2022, doi: 10.1109/ACCESS.2022.3182236.

Abstract

Base stations (BSs) rely on the massive multiple-input multiple-output (mMIMO) technology in the fifth generation of mobile networks (5G). A technology having a major impact on the nature of the electromagnetic field (EMF) exposure in such systems. This work has used a fully reconfigurable mMIMO testbed (operating at 2.63 GHz), capable of mimicking realistic 5G new radio (NR) BS beamforming performance, to first gather experimental-based evidence of 5G BS EMF exposure within a real-world outdoor environment, to then analyze its stochastic behaviour, and to finally understand its impact on the definition of exclusion boundaries for 5G BSs. The exposure data of our testbed have been complemented by exposure data collected from a typical commercial 5G BS (operating at 3.65 GHz) to confirm the result trends and findings of our analysis. A robust metrology has been followed to obtain all the EMF exposure data. Our data and analysis indicate that significant exposure variations can be noticed according to the beam directions, i.e. the relative position of the exposure measurement location to the beam directions as well as the environment, confirming the stochastic nature of 5G BS exposure. The variance of the exposure tends to decrease as the number of users increase for a constant traffic load. Whereas the exposure grows sub-linearly with the traffic load, regardless of the number of users. As far as the exclusion boundary of 5G BS is concerned, its revised definition based on 95-th percentile seems still not flexible enough to accommodate the deployment of 5G BS in countries/places with stringent EMF exposure limits, as for instance in Belgium.

Conclusion

This paper has studied the stochastic nature of the EMF exposure and how it can impact the de finition of the exclusion boundary, especially under the constraint of stringent exposure limits, by relying on two different approaches for gathering experimental-based evidences. First we have used a fully reconfi gurable mMIMO testbed for evaluating the spatial and temporal variations of the RF-EMF exposure in a controlled outdoor scenario. Then, we have used a typical commercial 5G BS to complement/confirm some of the results/trends obtained via the mMIMO testbed. Several important insights can be inferred from our measurement campaign results:

EMF exposure due to 5G BS grows linearly with the number of utilized RF chains at the BS.
 Significant exposure variations can result from the beam directionality, i.e. the relative position of the exposure measurement location to the beam direction has a significant impact on the measured exposure. This suggests a very dynamic/changing exposure environment driven by active UEs in 5G, in clear contrast with previous cellular technologies.
 Environmental effects, such as indirect propagation paths (e.g. re flecting off objects) or blocked paths can also create further variations.
 The variance of the exposure tends to decrease as the number of active UEs increases when the traffic remains constant, or in other words it becomes more deterministic. Whereas the exposure grows sub-linearly with the traffi c, regardless of the number of active UEs.
 The statistical distribution of EMF exposure for 5G BSs should be better understood and probably taken into account for defi ning the exclusion boundary. The results of our two measurement campaigns indicate that the statistics of different 5G BSs are not necessarily the same, i.e., the exposure of our mMIMO testbed BS follows a Poisson distribution while the commercial 5G BS exposure is closer to a normal distribution. In turn, this can impact the exclusion boundary size when it is defi ned as a particular percentile of the exposure cdf.
 Defining the BS exclusion boundary based on the 95-th percentile seems to not be a exible enough approach to accommodate the deployment of 5G BS in countries/places with stringent EMF exposure limits. Our measurement results correspond to a boundary size in the order of several tens of meters for an exposure limit of 6 V/m based on the 95-th percentile. The quality and quantity of field strength data collection need to be carefully considered to properly tune the extrapolation parameters in the SSB method as well as to accurately model the EMF exposure distribution of a particular 5G BS site.

In the future, we would like to extend this work to mm-wave frequencies and build an empirical statistical model of the EMF exposure based on the same metrology approach.


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Computational Assessment of RF Exposure Levels due to 5G Mobile Phones

M. Bonato et al. Computational Assessment of RF Exposure Levels due to 5G Mobile Phones. 2022 Microwave Mediterranean Symposium (MMS), 2022, pp. 1-4, doi: 10.1109/MMS55062.2022.9825603.

Abstract

The present work was performed to expand the knowledge on human RF-EMF exposure, considering the use of mm-wave spectrum in mobile communication applications, due to the deployment of 5th generation (5G) networks. The mobile antenna was modelled based on the 5G innovation technologies (i.e., mm-Wave bands, beamforming capability and high gain), resulting in a phased array antenna with 8 elements at the working frequency of 27 GHz. Three different skin layers models were simulated, to spot differences in the peaks of absorbed power density averaged over 4 cm2, following the ICNIRP guidelines. The simulations were implemented using the Sim4Life platform, simulating not only the presence of a mobile phone user, but also of a person passing nearby, who could be hit by the phased array antenna main beam. This work underlined that the absorbed power density peaks were greatly underestimated using the homogeneous skin model, respect to the multi-layers skin models. Moreover, for the person passing nearby, we found slightly higher exposure levels than those assessed for the mobile phone user. Lastly, in all the examined cases, the limits indicated by the ICNIRP guidelines were well respected.

Excerpt

These findings are also confirmed evaluating the three different configurations for the other two multi-layers models and analyzing the peak values of Sab in the most superficial tissue (i.e., the dermis in the homogeneous model and the stratum corneum in the two multi-layers models). Indeed, as we can see from Fig. 3, where the peak values of Sab are illustrated, the highest exposure levels are obtained for the person passing nearby. The highest peak value for the person passing nearby is obtained for the three-layers skin model, in the configuration where both the user and the person nearby are considered, with values equal to 6.97 W/m2 > whereas the highest peak value for the user is obtained in the same configuration, but for the four-layers model, with value equal to 5.80 W/m2.

Interestingly, the results showed that the use of a homogenous skin model could led to underestimate the exposure peak levels from 18% to 55% respect to the use of multi-layer models. This is probably due to the multiple reflections of the mm-waves that occur at the boundaries of the different tissue layers, and it is in line with other literature studies, where it was underlined the need to use multi-layers models for assessing the exposure levels when the mm-wave spectrum is considered [13], [16].

Lastly, all the peak values obtained greatly respected the basic restrictions of 20 W/m2, indicated in the ICNIRP guidelines [7].

https://ieeexplore.ieee.org/document/9825603

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A meta-analysis of the risk of salivary gland tumors associated with mobile phone use: the importance of correct exposure assessment

Vijayan K, Eslick GD. A meta-analysis of the risk of salivary gland tumors associated with mobile phone use: the importance of correct exposure assessment. Rev Environ Health. 2022 Jul 11. doi: 10.1515/reveh-2022-0055.

Abstract

Objectives: To investigate the risk of developing salivary gland tumors associated with the use of mobile phones.

Content: There have been a number of epidemiological studies conducted to assess for a possible association between mobile phone usage and the development of intracranial tumours, however results have been conflicting. We conducted an extensive literature search across four different databases. After selecting the articles relevant to the area of study, a total of seven studies were included in this meta-analysis, with no restrictions set on publication date or language. Studies were qualitatively assessed using the Newcastle-Ottawa scale. No significant association between the use of mobile phones and salivary gland tumors was observed (OR=1.06, 95% CI=0.86-1.32). No evidence for publication bias was detected.

Summary and outlook: Our findings indicate no significant association between mobile phone usage and salivary gland tumours. However, there were many limitations encountered in these studies, suggesting that the observed result may not be an accurate estimate of the true carcinogenic risk of mobile phones, especially for heavy long-term users. In fact, the studies included in this meta-analysis highlight the need to correctly define exposure assessment in order to ascertain the risk of a certain variable.


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The Protective Effects of EMF-LTE against DNA Double-Strand Break Damage In Vitro and In Vivo

Hee Jin, Kyuri Kim, Ga-Young Park, Minjeong Kim, Hae-June Lee, Sangbong Jeon, Ju Hwan Kim, Hak Rim Kim, Kyung-Min Lim, Yun-Sil Lee. 2021. The Protective Effects of EMF-LTE against DNA Double-Strand Break Damage In Vitro and In Vivo. International Journal of Molecular Sciences 22, 10: 5134. doi: 10.3390/ijms22105134.

Abstract

With the rapid growth of the wireless communication industry, humans are extensively exposed to electromagnetic fields (EMF) comprised of radiofrequency (RF). The skin is considered the primary target of EMFs given its outermost location. Recent evidence suggests that extremely low frequency (ELF)-EMF can improve the efficacy of DNA repair in human cell-lines. However, the effects of EMF-RF on DNA damage remain unknown. Here, we investigated the impact of EMF-long term evolution (LTE, 1.762 GHz, 8 W/kg) irradiation on DNA double-strand break (DSB) using the murine melanoma cell line B16 and the human keratinocyte cell line HaCaT. EMF-LTE exposure alone did not affect cell viability or induce apoptosis or necrosis. In addition, DNA DSB damage, as determined by the neutral comet assay, was not induced by EMF-LTE irradiation. Of note, EMF-LTE exposure can attenuate the DNA DSB damage induced by physical and chemical DNA damaging agents (such as ionizing radiation (IR, 10 Gy) in HaCaT and B16 cells and bleomycin (BLM, 3 μM) in HaCaT cells and a human melanoma cell line MNT-1), suggesting that EMF-LTE promotes the repair of DNA DSB damage. The protective effect of EMF-LTE against DNA damage was further confirmed by attenuation of the DNA damage marker γ-H2AX after exposure to EMF-LTE in HaCaT and B16 cells. Most importantly, irradiation of EMF-LTE (1.76 GHz, 6 W/kg, 8 h/day) on mice in vivo for 4 weeks reduced the γ-H2AX level in the skin tissue, further supporting the protective effects of EMF-LTE against DNA DSB damage. Furthermore, p53, the master tumor-suppressor gene, was commonly upregulated by EMF-LTE irradiation in B16 and HaCaT cells. This finding suggests that p53 plays a role in the protective effect of EMF-LTE against DNA DSBs. Collectively, these results demonstrated that EMF-LTE might have a protective effect against DNA DSB damage in the skin, although further studies are necessary to understand its impact on human health.


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Idiographic approach to idiopathic environmental intolerance attributed to electromagnetic fields (IEI-EMF) part I. Environmental, psychosocial & clinical assessment of 3 individuals with severe IEI-EMF

Dömötör Z, Szabolcs Z, Bérdi M, Witthöft M, Köteles F, Szemerszky R. An idiographic approach to idiopathic environmental intolerance attributed to electromagnetic fields (IEI-EMF) part I. Environmental, psychosocial and clinical assessment of three individuals with severe IEI-EMF. Heliyon. 2022 Jul 16;8(7):e09987. doi: 10.1016/j.heliyon.2022.e09987.

Abstract

IEI-EMF refers to an environmental illness whose primary feature is the occurrence of symptoms that are attributed to exposure to weak electromagnetic fields (EMFs). There is a growing evidence that this condition is characterized by marked individual differences thus a within-subject approach might add important information beyond the widely used nomothetic method. A mixed qualitative/quantitative idiographic protocol with a threefold diagnostic approach was tested with the participation of three individuals with severe IEI-EMF. In this qualitative paper, the environmental, psychosocial, and clinical aspects are presented and discussed (results of ecological momentary assessment are discussed in Part II of this study). For two participants, psychopathological factors appeared to be strongly related to the condition. Psychological assessment indicated a severe pre-psychotic state with paranoid tendencies, supplemented with a strong attentional focus on bodily sensations and health status. The psychological profile of the third individual showed no obvious pathology. Overall, the findings suggest that the condition might have uniformly been triggered by serious psychosocial stress for all participants. Substantial aetiological differences among participants with severe IEI-EMF were revealed. The substantial heterogeneity in the psychological and psychopathological profiles associated with IEI-EMF warrants the use of idiographic multimodal assessments in order to better understand the different ways of aetiology and to facilitate person-taylored treatments.


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Short-term exposure to radiofrequency radiation and metabolic enzymes' activities during pregnancy and prenatal development

Tomruk A, Ozgur-Buyukatalay E, Ozturk GG, Ulusu NN. Short-term exposure to radiofrequency radiation and metabolic enzymes' activities during pregnancy and prenatal development. Electromagn Biol Med. 2022 Jul 29:1-9. doi: 10.1080/15368378.2022.2104309.

Abstract

Radiofrequency radiation (RFR) as an environmental and physical pollutant may induce vulnerability to toxicity and disturb fetal development. Therefore, the potential health effects of short-term mobile phone like RFR exposure (GSM 1800 MHz; 14 V/m, 2 mW/kg specific absorption rate (SAR) during 15 min/day for a week) during pregnancy and also the development of fetuses were investigated. Hepatic glucose regulation and glutathione-dependent enzymes' capacities were biochemically analyzed in adult (female) and pregnant New Zealand White rabbits. Pregnant rabbits' two-day-old offspring were included to understand their developmental stages under short-term maternal RFR exposure. We analyzed two regulatory enzymes in the oxidative phase of phosphogluconate pathways to interpret the cytosolic NADPH's biosynthesis for maintaining mitochondrial energy metabolism. Moreover, the efficiencies of maternal glutathione-dependent enzymes on both the removal of metabolic disturbances during pregnancy and fetus development were examined. Whole-body RFR exposures were applied to pregnant animals from the 15th to the 22nd day of their gestations, i.e., the maturation periods of tissues and organs for rabbit fetuses. There were significant differences in hepatic glucose regulation and GSH-dependent enzymes' capacities with pregnancy and short-term RFR exposure. Consequently, we observed that intrauterine exposure to RFR might lead to cellular ROS- dependent disturbances in metabolic activity and any deficiency in the intracellular antioxidant (ROS-scavenging) system. This study might be a novel insight into further studies on the possible effects of short-term RF exposure and prenatal development.


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Immune Responses to Multi-Frequencies of 1.5 GHz and 4.3 GHz Microwave Exposure in Rats: Transcriptomic and Proteomic Analysis

Zhao L, Yao C, Wang H, Dong J, Zhang J, Xu X, Wang H, Yao B, Ren K, Sun L, Peng R. Immune Responses to Multi-Frequencies of 1.5 GHz and 4.3 GHz Microwave Exposure in Rats: Transcriptomic and Proteomic Analysis. Int J Mol Sci. 2022 Jun 22;23(13):6949. doi: 10.3390/ijms23136949.

Abstract

With the rapidly increasing application of microwave technologies, the anxiety and speculation about microwave induced potential health hazards has been attracting more and more attention. In our daily life, people are exposed to complex environments with multi-frequency microwaves, especially L band and C band microwaves, which are commonly used in communications. In this study, we exposed rats to 1.5 GHz (L10), 4.3 GHz (C10) or multi-frequency (LC10) microwaves at an average power density of 10 mW/cm2. Both single and multi-frequency microwaves induced slight pathological changes in the thymus and spleen. Additionally, the white blood cells (WBCs) and lymphocytes in peripheral blood were decreased at 6 h and 7 d after exposure, suggesting immune suppressive responses were induced. Among lymphocytes, the B lymphocytes were increased while the T lymphocytes were decreased at 7 d after exposure in the C10 and LC10 groups, but not in the L10 group. Moreover, multi-frequency microwaves regulated the B and T lymphocytes more strongly than the C band microwave. The results of transcriptomics and proteomics showed that both single and multi-frequency microwaves regulated numerous genes associated with immune regulation and cellular metabolism in peripheral blood and in the spleen. However, multi-frequency microwaves altered the expression of many more genes and proteins. Moreover, multi-frequency microwaves down-regulated T lymphocytes' development, differentiation and activation-associated genes, while they up-regulated B lymphocytes' activation-related genes. In conclusion, multi-frequency microwaves of 1.5 GHz and 4.3 GHz produced immune suppressive responses via regulating immune regulation and cellular metabolism-associated genes. Our findings provide meaningful information for exploring potential mechanisms underlying multi-frequency induced immune suppression.

Open access paper: https://www.mdpi.com/1422-0067/23/13/6949

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Estimation of some antioxidants for people exposed to electromagnetic waves for Internet towers in Samarra

Methaq Nazhan Mahmood, Asmaa Hashim Shaker, Humam E. Mohammed. Estimation of some antioxidants for people exposed to electromagnetic waves for Internet towers in Samarra. e79J Popul Ther Clin Pharmacol Vol 29(2):e79–e87; 16 June 2022. doi: 10.47750/jptcp.2022.934.

Abstract

    The current study was conducted in Samarra city, as a preliminary study to explore the impact of the presence of Internet network towers inside cities and on residential homes and its impact on people exposed directly and indirectly. The study included collecting samples from people exposed to the radioactive frequencies of Internet towers for periods ranging from (1-5) years and from (5- 10) years. The number of samples was 43 samples of females and males exposed (present in the places where the constellations are located), and 20 samples not exposed (in places far from the towers) as a control group, and the ages ranged between (20-35) years. Analysis and measurements were made for some antioxidants because it is one of the most essential lines of defense against free radicals that cause many diseases and premature aging, which included the concentration of the enzyme glutathione peroxidase PGx, the enzyme superoxide dismutase SOD, glutathione GSH, dimalondhyde MDA, and ONOO. The results showed a significant increase in the level of glutathione peroxidase enzyme concentration and the concentration of superoxide dismutase in the blood serum for people exposed to electromagnetic waves from the Internet towers compared to the control group. The results also showed a significant decrease in the level of GSH in the blood serums of people exposed to electromagnetic waves of the Internet towers compared to the control group. The results also showed a significant increase in the concentration of both MDA and peroxynitrite ONOO compared to the non-exposed subjects in the control group.


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Measurement and image-based estimation of dielectric properties of biological tissues -- past, present, and future

Sasaki K, Porter E, Rashed EA, Farrugia L, Schmid G. Measurement and image-based estimation of dielectric properties of biological tissues -past, present, and future. Phys Med Biol. 2022;67(14):10.1088/1361-6560/ac7b64. Published 2022 Jul 8. doi:10.1088/1361-6560/ac7b64.

Abstract

The dielectric properties of biological tissues are fundamental pararmeters that are essential for electromagnetic modeling of the human body. The primary database of dielectric properties compiled in 1996 on the basis of dielectric measurements at frequencies from 10 Hz to 20 GHz has attracted considerable attention in the research field of human protection from non-ionizing radiation. This review summarizes findings on the dielectric properties of biological tissues at frequencies up to 1 THz since the database was developed. Although the 1996 database covered general (normal) tissues, this review also covers malignant tissues that are of interest in the research field of medical applications. An intercomparison of dielectric properties based on reported data is presented for several tissue types. Dielectric properties derived from image-based estimation techniques developed as a result of recent advances in dielectric measurement are also included. Finally, research essential for future advances in human body modeling is discussed.


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Effects of phone mast-generated electromagnetic radiation gradient on the distribution of terrestrial birds and insects in a savanna protected area

Nyirenda, V.R., Namukonde, N., Lungu, E.B. et al. Effects of phone mast-generated electromagnetic radiation gradient on the distribution of terrestrial birds and insects in a savanna protected area. Biologia (2022). https://doi.org/10.1007/s11756-022-01113-8

Abstract

Inappropriate deployment of linear physical infrastructures, such as game fences, roads, electric power-lines, buildings, and phone masts can be detrimental to wild fauna. Fatalities arising from wildlife collisions with such infrastructure have been widely documented. However, there are non-physical and less studied effects, such as the ‘hidden’ negative ecological effects of electromagnetic radiation (EMR) on terrestrial fauna. In this study, the effects of phone mast-generated EMR on abundance, richness and distribution of terrestrial birds and insects in the Kafue National Park were studied. Ten (10) sample plots of 100 m × 100 m each were set at three (3) radial locations, based on the phone mast generated EMR strengths. For birds, point counts, while hand collection, cryptic searching, vegetation beating, sweep netting, pitfall trapping, sorting and identification for insects were employed for data collection. Data were analysed using biological indices (i.e., Shannon-Wiener and Simpson’s) and Analysis of Variance (ANOVA). The wildlife diversity significantly reduced with increasing EMR strengths, especially in areas (<12 km from phone mast) with greater than 250 ± 20 μA/m EMR levels. We suggest that deployment of wireless telecommunication infrastructure should take into account EMR levels, safe zones and avoid or minimize biological loss in hotspots.


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Locomotor Activity of Ixodes ricinus Females in 900 MHz Electromagnetic Field

Vargová B, Majláth I, Kurimský J, Cimbala R, Zbojovský J, Tryjanowski P, Majláthová V. Locomotor Activity of Ixodes ricinus Females in 900 MHz Electromagnetic Field. Life (Basel). 2022 Jun 13;12(6):884. doi: 10.3390/life12060884.

Abstract

Mobile telecommunications technologies have become an indispensable part of people’s lives of all ages around the world. They affect personal life and social interactions and are a work tool in the work routine. Network availability requirements and the quality of the Internet connection are constantly increasing, to which telecommunications providers are responding. Humans and wildlife live in the permanent presence of electromagnetic radiation with just a minor knowledge of the impact this radiation has. The aim of our study was to investigate the effect of a 900 MHz electromagnetic field (EMF) on the locomotor behavior of female Ixodes ricinus ticks under laboratory conditions. Experiments were performed in the radiation-shielded tube (RST) test and radiation-shielded circular open-field arena placed in an anechoic chamber. Altogether, 480 female I. ricinus ticks were tested. In the RST arena, no differences in preference for irradiated and shielded parts of experimental modules were observed; in the open-field arena, the time spent and the trajectory passed was significantly longer in the part exposed to the EMF.

Conclusions

Cell phone use, an exponentially expanding phenomenon introducing electromagnetic load in the environment, inevitably has a biological effect on all living organisms. This does not exclude ticks, epidemiologically very important parasites. EMFs emit a very weak signal to animals (vertebrate and invertebrates), and the evidence of animal response to this signal may be diminished by the plethora of other, stronger signals. To provide evidence unequivocally showing the response to the presence of an EMF is difficult and needs different approaches, such as behavioral tests, and possibly evidence on molecular levels. The number of publications in this field is rising very slowly. In our pilot study, we determined that ticks reacted to the presence of a man-made EMF and a change in the I. ricinus female tick locomotor behavior occurred when exposed to 900 MHz frequency. In future studies, it is crucial to test other frequencies, other EMF sources, other tick species, and possibly use the results of behavioral tests as a starting point leading to studying the impact and the changes triggered by EMF exposure at the cellular or molecular level.


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Uptake of nanoparticles from sunscreen physical filters into cells from increased environmental microwave radiation: increased potential risk of use of sunscreens to human health

Horikoshi, S., Iwabuchi, M., Kawaguchi, M. et al. Uptake of nanoparticles from sunscreen physical filters into cells arising from increased environmental microwave radiation: increased potential risk of the use of sunscreens to human health. Photochem Photobiol Sci (2022). https://doi.org/10.1007/s43630-022-00259-3.

Abstract

This study examines the microwave chemical risks posed by photocatalysts present in sunscreens (physical filters) against the increasing use of microwaves (radio waves) in the environment, sometimes referred to as electronic smog. Specifically, the study assesses the damage caused by silica-coated physical filters (photocatalysts, TiO2⋅ and/or ZnO) contained in commercially available sunscreens and fresh silica-coated ZnO for sunscreens to mouse skin fibroblasts cells (NIH/3T3) evaluated in vitro by the life/death of cells using two types of electromagnetic waves: UV light and microwave radiation, and under simultaneous irradiation with both UV light and microwaves. Conditions of the electromagnetic waves were such as to be of lower light irradiance than that of UVA/UVB radiation from incident sunlight, and with microwaves near the threshold power levels that affect human health. The photocatalytic activity of the physical filters was investigated by examining the degradation of the rhodamine B (RhB) dye in aqueous media and by the damage caused to DNA plasmids from E. coli. Compared to the photocatalytic activity of ZnO and TiO2 when irradiated with UV light alone, a clear enhanced photocatalytic activity was confirmed upon irradiating these physical filters concurrently with UV and microwaves. Moreover, the uptake of these metal oxides into the NIH/3T3 cells led to the death of these cells as a result of the enhanced photocatalytic activity of the metal oxides on exposure to microwave radiation.

Concluding Remarks

This study has demonstrated that the degradation of RhB and the degradation of DNA plasmids were promoted by two types of metal-oxide physical filters (ZnO and/or TiO2) in sunscreens when exposed to both UV and microwave radiations, with the irradiation output of the microwaves adjusted to a value close to the legal regulations. The effect of these photoactive filters on NIH/3T3 cells was also examined. In addition to the decomposition of the dye and the damage caused to the DNA plasmids by these photocatalytically active metal oxides, the study has also shown that nanoparticles of these physical filters are taken up by the cells under concurrent irradiation with ultraviolet rays and microwaves.

Although we did not discuss the risks to people on using sunscreens (however, see ref. [6]) and the effects of microwaves to human health, we hasten to point out that various catalytic reactions have been shown to be accelerated in Microwave Chemistry [29] as a result of the electromagnetic wave effects. The issue raised in this study is that if ZnO and/or TiO2 contained in cosmetics acted as photocatalysts under UV and UV/MW irradiation, in addition to scattering UV light (as suggested by many), any increase of the microwave intensity in the environment would certainly pose an increased risk to human health as evidenced by the damage caused to DNA plasmids. In addition, to the extent that the presence of metal oxides used as physical filters in sunscreens are activated by the UVA/UVB radiation (320–400 nm/290–320 nm), their simultaneous exposure to microwave radiation can also lead to or otherwise increase their uptake by the cells, a consequence of which can also pose potential risks to human health.

https://link.springer.com/article/10.1007/s43630-022-00259-3

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Electromagnetic field effects of marine radar systems on the ship crew


Ünal Özdemir. Electromagnetic field effects of marine radar systems on the ship crew. Proceedings of the Institution of Mechanical Engineers, Part M: Journal of Engineering for the Maritime Environment. July 2022. doi:10.1177/14750902221107733.

Abstract

Marine radars become the sources of electromagnetic pollution during navigation and anchor watchkeeping. In several scientific studies, it was reported that electromagnetic fields could lead to several serious diseases, especially in the nervous system. In the current study, electromagnetic pollution is measured at different points on ships of various tonnage and types to identify electromagnetic pollution induced by marine radars. During these measurements, SRM 3006 compact spectrum analyzer (Narda Safety Test Solutions GmbH, Germany) that was operated within the 400 MHz–6 GHz frequency range was employed with a triaxial antenna. Then, the measurement results were compared with the benchmark published by ICNIRP (International Committee on Non-Ionizing Radiation Protection), and electromagnetic pollution levels induced by marine radar antennas and possible negative consequences for the crew were analyzed.

Conclusion

The study findings revealed that the radar-induced EMF generally exceeded the ICNIRP limits in the ships. This increased the possibility of adverse health outcomes due to the exposure of the crew to magnetic field pollution for long periods of time. In future studies, it would be better to consider the problem from this perspective, especially that of the medical professional. Furthermore, future studies could conduct measurements during navigation or anchor watch to avoid external pollution in port environment to reach more accurate findings if the required financial resources could be provided. It could also be suggested that it would be beneficial to increase the sample size and develop various groups. Furthermore, since the measurements were conducted for 6 min, namely the limit specified in the ICNIRP guide, these were short-term spot measurements. However, continuous 24-h measurements over several days in a robust sample of ships would provide more realistic findings.

It could be suggested that the present study findings would provide a foundation for future IMO regulations, maritime industry policy makers, WMO and related institutions. It would be a correct approach to revise the mandatory MARPOL (International Convention for the Prevention of Pollution from Ships) and MLC (Maritime Labor Convention) conventions for IMO member nations, and to keep the issue of electromagnetic pollution in the maritime agenda. It was estimated that the topic will raise the interest of the maritime transportation industry in the future after certain number of studies are published on the topic, which is currently quite limited.


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Is extremely low frequency pulsed electromagnetic fields (EMF) applicable to gliomas? A literature review of underlying mechanisms and application of extremely low frequency pulsed EMF

Huang M, Li P, Chen F, Cai Z, Yang S, Zheng X, Li W. Is extremely low frequency pulsed electromagnetic fields applicable to gliomas? A literature review of the underlying mechanisms and application of extremely low frequency pulsed electromagnetic fields. Cancer Med. 2022 Aug 5. doi: 10.1002/cam4.5112.

Abstract

Gliomas refer to a group of complicated human brain tumors with a low 5-year survival rate and limited therapeutic options. Extremely low-frequency pulsed electromagnetic field (ELF-PEMF) is a specific magnetic field featuring almost no side effects. However, the application of ELF-PEMF in the treatment of gliomas is rare. This review summarizes five significant underlying mechanisms including calcium ions, autophagy, apoptosis, angiogenesis, and reactive oxygen species, and applications of ELF-PEMF in glioma treatment from a clinical practice perspective. In addition, the prospects of ELF-PEMF in combination with conventional therapy for the treatment of gliomas are reviewed. This review benefits any specialists, especially oncologists, interested in this new therapy because it can help treat patients with gliomas properly.


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Vestibular Extremely Low-Frequency Magnetic and Electric Stimulation Effects on Human Subjective Visual Vertical Perception

Bouisset N, Villard S, Legros A. Vestibular Extremely Low-Frequency Magnetic and Electric Stimulation Effects on Human Subjective Visual Vertical Perception. Bioelectromagnetics. 2022 Jul 8. doi: 10.1002/bem.22417.

Abstract

Electric fields from both extremely low-frequency magnetic fields (ELF-MF) and alternating current (AC) stimulations impact human neurophysiology. As the retinal photoreceptors, vestibular hair cells are graded potential cells and are sensitive to electric fields. Electrophosphene and magnetophosphene literature suggests different impacts of AC and ELF-MF on the vestibular hair cells. Furthermore, while AC modulates the vestibular system more globally, lateral ELF-MF stimulations could be more utricular specific. Therefore, to further address the impact of ELF-MF-induced electric fields on the human vestibular system and the potential differences with AC stimulations, we investigated the effects of both stimulation modalities on the perception of verticality using a subjective visual vertical (SVV) paradigm. For similar levels of SVV precision, the ELF-MF condition required more time to adjust SVV, and SVV variability was higher with ELF-MF than with AC vestibular-specific stimulations. Yet, the differences between AC and ELF-MF stimulations were small. Overall, this study highlights small differences between AC and ELF-MF vestibular stimulations, underlines a potential utricular contribution, and has implications for international exposure guidelines and standards.


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The Subjective and Objective Improvement of Non-Invasive Treatment of Schumann Resonance in Insomnia-A Randomized and Double-Blinded Study

Huang YS, Tang I, Chin WC, Jang LS, Lee CP, Lin C, Yang CP, Cho SL. The Subjective and Objective Improvement of Non-Invasive Treatment of Schumann Resonance in Insomnia-A Randomized and Double-Blinded Study. Nat Sci Sleep. 2022 Jun 8;14:1113-1124. doi: 10.2147/NSS.S346941.

Abstract

Purpose: Accumulated studies revealed that electromagnetic field can affect human brain and sleep, and the extremely low-frequency electromagnetic field, Schumann resonance, may have the potential to reduce insomnia symptoms. The purpose of this study was to investigate the responses of patients with insomnia to a non-invasive treatment, Schumann resonance (SR), and to evaluate its effectiveness by subjective and objective sleep assessments.

Patients and methods: We adopted a double-blinded and randomized design and 40 participants (70% female; 50.00 ± 13.38 year) with insomnia completed the entire study. These participants were divided into the SR-sleep-device group and the placebo-device group and were followed up for four weeks. The study used polysomnography (PSG) to measure objective sleep and used sleep diaries, Pittsburgh Sleep Quality Inventory (PSQI), Epworth Sleepiness Scale (ESS), and visual analogy of sleep satisfaction to measure subjective sleep. The 36-Item Short-Form Health Survey (SF-36) was used to evaluate quality of life. Chi-square test, Mann-Whitney U-test, and Wilcoxon test were used to analyze the data.

Results: About 70% of the subjects were women, with an average age of 50±13.38 years and an average history of insomnia of 9.68±8.86 years. We found that in the SR-sleep-device group, objective sleep measurements (sleep-onset-latency, SOL, and total-sleep-time, TST) and subjective sleep questionnaires (SOL, TST, sleep-efficiency, sleep-quality, daytime-sleepiness, and sleep-satisfaction) were significantly improved after using the SR-sleep-device; in the placebo-device group, only such subjective sleep improvements as PSQI and sleep-satisfaction were observed.

Conclusion: This study demonstrates that the SR-sleep-device can reduce the insomnia symptoms through both objective and subjective tests, with minimal adverse effects. Future studies can explore the possible mechanism of SR and health effects and, with a longer tracking time, verify the effectiveness and side effects.

Open access paper: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC9189153/

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Static magnetic fields from earphones: Detailed measurements plus some open questions

L. Makinistian, L. Zastko, A. Tvarožná, L.E. Días, I. Belyaev. Static magnetic fields from earphones: Detailed measurements plus some open questions. Environmental Research, 2022. doi: 10.1016/j.envres.2022.113907.

Highlights
• Experimental mapping of the static magnetic fields near 6 earphones.
• Physical modeling of the measured fields allows extrapolation and simulation.
• 3D simulations allow for visualization of field distribution in the ear.
• Field intensity and gradients, plus their combination with RF/ELF should be studied.
Abstract

Earphones (EP) are a worldwide, massively adopted product, assumed to be innocuous provided the recommendations on sound doses limits are followed. Nevertheless, sound is not the only physical stimulus that derives from EP use, since they include a built-in permanent magnet from which a static magnetic field (SMF) originates. We performed 2D maps of the SMF at several distances from 6 models of in-ear EP, showing that they produce an exposure that spans from ca. 20 mT on their surface down to tens of μT in the inner ear. The numerous reports of bioeffects elicited by SMF in that range of intensities (applied both acutely and chronically), together with the fact that there is no scientific consensus over the possible mechanisms of interaction with living tissues, suggest that caution could be recommendable. In addition, more research is warranted on the possible effects of the combination of SMF with extremely low frequency and radiofrequency fields, which has so far been scarcely studied. Overall, while several open questions about bioeffects of SMF remain to be addressed by the scientific community, we find sensible to suggest that the use of air-tube earphones is probably the more conservative, cautious choice.

Excerpt

The International Commission on Non-Ionizing Radiation Protection recommends a 400 mT exposure limit for the general public (ICNIRP, 2009), which are way above the SMF reported here. It must be noted that the recommendation is based on the effects of nausea, vertigo, photo phosphenes and nerve stimulation, well associated to high and ultra-high magnetic fields (typical of MRI facilities). All the other reported biological effects, which are not directly proven to be a health hazard (but could be, such being the case of the increase of reactive oxygen species (Wang and Zhang, 2017)) are disregarded by the recommendation.


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Do magnetic fields related to submarine power cables affect the functioning of a common bivalve?

Jakubowska-Lehrmann M, Białowąs M, Otremba Z, Hallmann A, Śliwińska-Wilczewska S, Urban-Malinga B. Do magnetic fields related to submarine power cables affect the functioning of a common bivalve? Mar Environ Res. 2022 Jul 11;179:105700. doi: 10.1016/j.marenvres.2022.105700.

Abstract

The aim of the study was to determine the effect of static magnetic field (SMF) and electromagnetic field (EMF), of values usually recorded near submarine cables, on the bioenergetics, oxidative stress, and neurotoxicity in the cockle Cerastoderma glaucum. Bivalves maintained a positive energy balance, but the filtration rate and energy available for individual production were significantly lower in SMF-exposed animals compared to the control treatment. No changes in the respiration were noted but ammonia excretion rate was significantly lower after exposure to EMF. Changes in the activities of antioxidant enzymes and the lipid peroxidation were not observed; however, exposure to both fields resulted in increased protein carbonylation. After exposure to EMF a significant inhibition of acetylcholinesterase activity was observed. As the present study for the first time revealed the oxidative damage and neurotoxicity in marine invertebrate after exposure to artificial magnetic fields, the need for further research is highlighted.

https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0141113622001453?via%3Dihub

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The Impact of Magnetic Field on Insecticide Toxicity Measured by Biological and Biochemical Parameters of Earias insulana (Bollworm)

Hisham M El-Bassouiny, Warda A Z El-Medany, Mervat A A Kandil. The Impact of Magnetic Field on Insecticide Toxicity Measured by Biological and Biochemical Parameters of Earias insulana (Boisd). Bioelectromagnetics. 2022 Aug 5. doi: 10.1002/bem.22418.

Abstract

This study illustrates the effect of magnetic field (MF) on the toxicity of two insecticides, emamectin benzoate (Emazoate 2.15% EC) and spinosad (SpinTor 24% SC), and determines their adverse effects on the bollworm (Earias insulana) through various biological and biochemical assays. The investigation indicated that exposure to the insecticides in a MF of 180 mT resulted in stronger toxicity, with LC50 values of 0.162, 1.211, and 1.770 ppm, respectively. In addition, the results showed that magnetized insecticides significantly increased in the duration of the total immature stages (larvae and/or pupae) 32.1 and 36.6 days, compared with 27.9 and 30.5 days, respectively, in the nonmagnetized insecticides, while untreated check was 21 days. Also, the magnetized insecticides reduced the percentage of adult emergence, and increased deformations in the larval and pupal stages. Furthermore, sex ratio was greatly affected by exposure to both insecticides in conjunction with the MF. Exposure of the larvae of E insulana to magnetized insecticides can bring about malfunction in some biochemical process and significantly decreased the invertase activity, and decreased the total protein and carbohydrates. In contrast, it can increase amylase compared with nonmagnetized insecticides and untreated controls. Results concluded that the two insecticides' MF affected growth, survival time, and biological and biochemical parameters of E. insulana.

https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/35930550/