Tuesday, May 4, 2021

Recent Research on Wireless Radiation and Electromagnetic Fields

I have been circulating abstracts of newly-published scientific papers on wireless radiation and electromagnetic fields (EMF) about once or twice a month since August 2016. These updates are sent to several hundred EMF scientists around the world.

The latest additions appear below.

The complete collection of abstracts now covers more than 1,000 scientific papers. This 947-page document (pdf) can be downloaded by clicking on the following link:

Note: This link will change when new abstracts are added to the collection.

Recent Papers

Manmade Electromagnetic Fields and Oxidative Stress—Biological Effects and Consequences for Health

David Schuermann, Meike Mevissen. Manmade Electromagnetic Fields and Oxidative Stress—Biological Effects and Consequences for Health. Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2021, 22(7), 3772; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms22073772

(This article belongs to the Special Issue Molecular Mechanisms of Genotoxicity)


Concomitant with the ever-expanding use of electrical appliances and mobile communication systems, public and occupational exposure to electromagnetic fields (EMF) in the extremely-low-frequency and radiofrequency range has become a widely debated environmental risk factor for health. Radiofrequency (RF) EMF and extremely-low-frequency (ELF) MF have been classified as possibly carcinogenic to humans (Group 2B) by the International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC). The production of reactive oxygen species (ROS), potentially leading to cellular or systemic oxidative stress, was frequently found to be influenced by EMF exposure in animals and cells. In this review, we summarize key experimental findings on oxidative stress related to EMF exposure from animal and cell studies of the last decade. The observations are discussed in the context of molecular mechanisms and functionalities relevant to health such as neurological function, genome stability, immune response, and reproduction. Most animal and many cell studies showed increased oxidative stress caused by RF-EMF and ELF-MF. In order to estimate the risk for human health by manmade exposure, experimental studies in humans and epidemiological studies need to be considered as well.


The majority of recent animal studies on increased ROS production and oxidative stress caused by EMF were aimed at investigations of the nervous system and reproduction. Analogously, in cell studies, neurons or neuron-like cells were most frequently used. Animal studies on oxidative stress and possible impairment of reproduction at different stages (sperm maturation, very early stages of pregnancy such as implantation, and effects in newborns and after a few weeks of EMF exposure to the mother animals during pregnancy) follow in second place. These animal studies were supported by some cell studies, mainly in mouse cell lines of the male reproductive system and in sperm. Overall, more cells than animal studies were published, using, in addition to the above mentioned cell types of the nervous and reproductive system, immune and cancer cells, as well as isolated cells from the skin and epithelia. For this report, animal and cell studies were included, according to their quality and research question, in order to give an informative overview of the available studies; however, this is not a systematic review.

In summary, indications for increased oxidative stress caused by RF-EMF and ELF-MF were reported in the majority of the animal studies and in more than half of the cell studies. Investigations in Wistar and Sprague-Dawley rats provided consistent evidence for oxidative stress occurring after RF-EMF exposure in the brain and testes and some indication of oxidative stress in the heart. Observations in Sprague-Dawley rats also seem to provide consistent evidence for oxidative stress in the liver and kidneys. In mice, oxidative stress induced by RF-EMF was predominantly demonstrated in the brain and testes, as well as in liver, kidneys, and ovaries. These observations were made with a variety of cell types, exposure times, and dosages (SAR or field strengths), within the range of the regulatory limits and recommendations. Certainly, some studies were subject to methodological uncertainties or weaknesses or are not very comprehensive regarding exposure time, dose, number, and quantitative analysis of the biomarkers used, to name a few. A trend is emerging, which becomes clear even when taking these methodological weaknesses into account, i.e., that EMF exposure, even in the low dose range, may well lead to changes in cellular oxidative balance. Organisms and cells are able to react to oxidative stress, and many observations after EMF exposure point to an adaptation after a recovery phase. Adverse conditions, such as diseases (diabetes, neurodegenerative diseases), compromise the body’s defense mechanisms, including antioxidant protection mechanisms, and individuals with such pre-existing conditions are more likely to experience health effects. The studies show that very young or old individuals can react less efficiently to oxidative stress, which of course also applies to other stressors that cause oxidative stress. Further investigations under standardized conditions are necessary to better understand and confirm these phenomena and observations.


Science, Politics, and Groupthink [Health Matters]

James C. Lin. Science, Politics, and Groupthink [Health Matters]. IEEE Microwave Magazine. 22(5):24-26. Apr 1, 2021. DOI: 10.1109/MMM.2021.3056975.


Discusses how the COVID-19 health pandemic worldwide was complicated by not only health and medical concerns, but the inclusion of politics, conspiracy theories, and social media.

In his latest column Professor Emeritus Lin criticizes the ICNIRP, the non-profit organization which the WHO relies upon for non-ionizing electromagnetic fields (EMF) exposure guidelines that it promotes worldwide. As you may know, this column is important not only because Professor Lin is one of the most respected EMF scientists in the world, he is the first scientist who has served on the ICNIRP Commission (2004 - 2016; chair of the committee on Physics & Engineering, 2008-2012; chair of the Radio Frequency group, 2012-2015) to challenge the credibility of ICNIRP's EMF exposure guidelines.


"Recently, a privately constituted group, with self-appointed membership, published a set of guidelines for limiting exposure to RF electromagnetic fields in the 100-kHz and 300-GHz frequency range [7]. The proposed guidelines were primarily based on the tissue-heating potentials of RF radiation to elevate animal body temperatures to greater than 1° C. While recognizing that the two aforementioned studies used large numbers of animals, best laboratory practice, and animals exposed for the entirety of their lives, the private group preferred to quibble with alleged “chance differences” between treatment conditions and the fact that the measured animal body core temperature changes reached 1° C, implying that a 1° C body core temperature rise is carcinogenic, ignoring the RF exposure. The group then pronounced that, when considered either in isolation or within the context of other animal carcinogenicity research, these findings do not provide evidence that RF radiation is carcinogenic.

Furthermore, the group noted that, even though many epidemiological studies of RF radiation associated with mobile phone use and cancer risk had been performed, studies on brain tumors, acoustic neuroma, meningioma, and parotid gland tumors had not provided evidence of an increased cancer risk. It suggested that, although somewhat elevated odds ratios were observed, inconsistencies and limitations, including recall or selection bias, precluded these results from being considered for setting exposure guidelines. The simultaneous penchant to dismiss and criticize positive results and the fondness for and eager acceptance of negative findings are palpable and concerning.

In contrast, the IARC’s evaluation of the same epidemiological studies ended up officially classifying RF radiation as possibly carcinogenic to humans [2], [3].

An understandable question that comes to mind is this: How can there be such divergent evaluations and conclusions of the same scientific studies? Humans are not always rational or as transparent as advertised, and scientists are not impervious to conflicts of interest and can be driven by egocentric motivations. Humans frequently make choices and decisions that defy clear logic.

Science has never been devoid of politics, believe it or not...."

"Cellular mobile communication and associated wireless technologies have proven, beyond any debate, their direct benefit to humans. However, as for the verdict on the health and safety of billions of people who are exposed to unnecessary levels of RF radiation over extended lengths of time or even over their lifetimes, the jury is still out. When confronted with such divergent assessments of science, the ALARA—as low as reasonably achievable—practice and principle should be followed for RF health and safety."

[7] “ICNIRP guidelines for limiting exposure to electromagnetic fields (100 kHz to 300 GHz),” Health Phys., vol. 118, no. 5, pp. 483–524, 2020.


Background document to the advisory report 5G and health (Health Council of the Netherlands)

Health Council of the Netherlands. Background document to the advisory report 5G and health. Background document to 5G and health. The Hague: Health Council of the Netherlands, 2020; publication no. 2020/16Ae


In this background document to the advisory report 5G and health, drafted by the Electromagnetic Fields Committee of the Health Council of the Netherlands, chapter 2 contains the search strategies used by the committee for the different topics. In chapter 3 the in- and exclusion criteria of the WHO are presented. In chapter 4 the committee gives an overview of the relevant publications on diseases and conditions, and in chapter 5 of the relevant publications on biological processes.


IEEE C95.3-2021 - IEEE Approved Draft Recommended Practice for Measurements and Computations of EMF with Respect to Human Exposure to Such Fields, 0 Hz-300 GHz

Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers. IEEE C95.3-2021 - IEEE Approved Draft Recommended Practice for Measurements and Computations of Electric, Magnetic and Electromagnetic Fields with Respect to Human Exposure to Such Fields, 0 Hz-300 GHz. 2021.

Standard Details

Best practices are described for the development, validation, and application of methods for the computation and measurement of relevant metrics characterizing human exposure to electric and/or magnetic fields (collectively, electromagnetic fields) over the frequency range of 0 Hz to 300 GHz. This recommended practice is a replacement for IEEE Std C95.3™-2002 and IEEE Std C95.3.1™-2010, extensively revising the contents from those and harmonizing with IEEE Std C95.1™-2019. Detailed methodology is not described; rather, requirements for best practice are expressed through guidance and references to other documents and standards. Examples are included to clarify the guidance. This recommended practice is intended for professional users who are familiar with basic electromagnetic field theory and practice and for persons involved in specifying or implementing critical hazard assessments or surveys such as those described in IEEE Std C95.7™-2014.


Radiation Protection Standard for Limiting Exposure to Radiofrequency Fields - 100 kHz to 300 GHz (ARPANSA)

Australian Radiation Protection and Nuclear Safety Agency (ARPANSA). Radiation Protection Standard for Limiting Exposure to Radiofrequency Fields - 100 kHz to 300 GHz. 2021, Radiation Protection Series S-1 (Rev. 1)

No abstract.


The Effect of GSM Electromagnetic Field Exposure on the Waking Electroencephalogram: Methodological Influences

Anna Dalecki, Adam Verrender, Sarah P Loughran, Rodney J Croft. The Effect of GSM Electromagnetic Field Exposure on the Waking Electroencephalogram: Methodological Influences. Bioelectromagnetics. 12 April 2021.https://doi.org/10.1002/bem.22338.


Although there is consistent evidence that exposure to radiofrequency electromagnetic fields (RF-EMF) increases the spontaneous resting alpha spectral power of the electroencephalogram (EEG), the reliability of this evidence is uncertain as some studies have also failed to observe this effect. The present study aimed to determine whether the effect of RF-EMF exposure on EEG alpha power depends on whether EEG is derived from eyes open or closed conditions and assessed earlier (<5-min) versus later (>25-min) in the exposure interval. Thirty-six adults participated in three experimental sessions, each involving one exposure: "Sham," "Low," and "High" RF-EMF corresponding to peak spatial specific absorption rates averaged over 10 g of 0, 1, and 2 W/kg, respectively. Resting EEG was recorded at baseline (no exposure), during, and after exposure. Alpha power increase was found to be greater for the eyes open than eyes closed EEG during both the High (P = 0.04) and Low (P = 0.04) RF-EMF exposures. There was also a trend toward it being larger at the end, versus the start of the "High" 30-min exposure (P < 0.01; eyes open condition). This suggests that the use of eyes closed conditions, and insufficient RF-EMF exposure durations, are likely explanations for the failure of some studies to detect an RF-EMF exposure-related increase in alpha power, as such methodological choices decrease signal-to-noise ratios and increase type II error.


Simulated mobile communication frequencies (3.5 GHz) emitted by a signal generator affects the sleep of Drosophila melanogaster

Yahong Wang, Hongying Zhang, Ziyan Zhang, Boqun Sun, Chao Tang, Lu Zhang, Zhihao Jiang, Bo Ding, Yanyan Liao, Peng Cai. Simulated mobile communication frequencies (3.5 GHz) emitted by a signal generator affects the sleep of Drosophila melanogaster. Environ Pollut. 2021 Apr 5;283:117087. doi: 10.1016/j.envpol.2021.117087.


With the rapid development of science and technology, 5G technology will be widely used, and biosafety concerns about the effects of 5G radiofrequency radiation on health have been raised. Drosophila melanogaster was selected as the model organism for our study, in which a 3.5 GHz radiofrequency radiation (RF-EMR) environment was simulated at intensities of 0.1 W/m2, 1 W/m2, and 10 W/m2. The activity of parent male and offspring (F1) male flies was measured using a Drosophila activity monitoring system under short-term and long-term 3.5 GHz RF-EMR exposure. Core genes associated with heat stress, the circadian clock and neurotransmitters were detected by QRT-PCR technology, and the contents of GABA and glutamate were detected by UPLC-MS. The results show that short-term RF-EMR exposure increased the activity level and reduced the sleep duration while long-term RF-EMR exposure reduced the activity level and increased the sleep duration of F1 male flies. Under long-term RF-EMR, the expression of heat stress response-related hsp22, hsp26 and hsp70 genes was increased, the expression of circadian clock-related per, cyc, clk, cry, and tim genes was altered, the content of GABA and glutamate was reduced, and the expression levels of synthesis, transport and receptor genes were altered. In conclusion, long-term RF-EMR exposure enhances the heat stress response of offspring flies and then affects the expression of circadian clock and neurotransmitter genes, which leads to decreased activity, prolonged sleep duration, and improved sleep quality.

• This study was simulating the most representative 3.5 GHz radio frequency radiation band of 5G in environment.
•This study was exploring the impact on the activity and sleep of organism under long-term RF-EMR.
• This study provided a reference for the hidden health effects brought by the development of science and technology.


The Adverse Effect of Mobile Phone Radiations on Dorsal Root Ganglion of Albino Rats

Faisal Taufiq, Mohammed Bhilal Babu, Aqeel Ahmad, Mohammed Eajaz, Ahmed Shariff, Noureldaim Elnoman Elbadawi, Semmal Syed Meerasa. The Adverse Effect of Mobile Phone Radiations on Dorsal Root Ganglion of Albino Rats. Journal of Pharmaceutical Research International, 19 March 2021. Page 54-60. DOI: 10.9734/jpri/2021/v33i1331266.


Objectives: To assess the effect of Mobile Phone Radio Frequency Electromagnetic Radiation (RF-EMR) on the histological structure of dorsal root ganglia in albino rats.

Methods: Twenty-four albino rats divided into one control and three experimental groups were studied for four weeks. The experimental groups were exposed to three different levels of RF-EMR through complete missed calls of 80,120 and160 calls per day respectively, using a GSM mobile phone of 0.9 GHz to1.8 GHz in silent mode. The dorsal root ganglia of the sacrificed Rats were examined under light and transmission electron microscope (TEM).

Results: Dorsal root ganglions of exposed rats showed considerable histological changes like reduction in cell size, condensation of cytoplasm, peripherally located heterochromatin nucleus, loss of nucleolus and densely packed myelinated nerve fibers. No such changes were observed in control rats.

Conclusion: Dorsal root ganglionic cells showed enduring and continuous changes when exposed to RF-EMR. The severity of histomorphological changes was dose-dependent, which increased constantly with radiation dosage increment. It might be fair to conclude that degenerative changes in the Dorsal Root Ganglion of the spinal cord, could be attributed to the long-term exposure to RF-EMR.


Effects of mobile phone emissions on human red blood cells

Aniket Chowdhury, Yashveer Singh, Uttam Das, Deepak Waghmare, Raktim Dasgupta, Shovan Kumar Majumder. Effects of mobile phone emissions on human red blood cells. J Biophotonics. 2021 Apr 19;e202100047. doi: 10.1002/jbio.202100047.


Raman spectroscopy was performed on GSM 900 MHz and 1800 MHz mobile phone signal exposed red blood cells (RBCs). The observed changes in the Raman spectra of mobile signal exposed RBCs compared to unexposed control suggest reduced hemoglobin-oxygen affinity for the exposed cells. The possible mechanism may involve activation of the voltage gated membrane Ca2+ channels by the mobile phone emissions resulting in an increase in the levels of adenosine triphosphate (ATP) and 2,3-diphosphoglycerate (2,3-DPG) in cells via altered metabolic activities. Further studies carried out with fluorescent Ca2+ indicator confirmed increased intracellular Ca2+ level in the exposed cells. Since intracellular ATP level influences the shape and mechanics of RBCs, exposed cells were studied using diffraction phase microscopy and optical tweezers. Detectable changes in shape and mechanical properties were observed due to mobile signal exposure.


The RBC samples were exposed to mobile phone signal by keeping a commercial mobile handset (Nokia 105) in close proximity (~ few mm) of the glass cover slip. The handset was kept on call mode throughout the exposure time.

In the present study the SAR for the handset used is 1.501 W/kg which is less than the permissible limit of 1.6 W/kg prescribed in most parts of the world. The power density level from the typical GSM handsets is ~ 10-4 mW/cm2  [33] and our mobile handset has no additional features like Global Positioning System (GPS), WiFi, Bluetooth etc. that may unwantedly add to the effect of basic GSM signals.

... thermal effects on blood samples due to low level microwave radiation from the handset should be negligible.

Further, an estimate of the power density at a distance of 100 meters (R) from a mobile network tower, typically emitting (Pt) ~ 100W, shows the radiation density is about 10-4 mW/cm2. Such radiation exposure from network towers for people residing nearby will be of continuous nature [34] and closely resembles the pattern and level of exposure considered in present experiments. Such radiation exposure from network towers for people residing nearby will be of continuous nature [34] and closely resembles the pattern and level of exposure considered in present experiment.


Antenna/Human Body Coupling in 5G Millimeter-Wave Bands: Do Age and Clothing Matter?

G. Sacco, D. Nikolayev, R. Sauleau, M. Zhadobov. Antenna/Human Body Coupling in 5G Millimeter-Wave Bands: Do Age and Clothing Matter? IEEE Journal of Microwaves, doi: 10.1109/JMW.2021.3063256.


With the fast development of 5th generation (5G) mobile networks and prominence of the personal area networks and human-centered communications, people of all ages are increasingly exposed in the upper part of the microwave spectrum. In some exposure scenarios, presence of a textile between the radiating source and skin can affect the power absorption. This study investigates, for the first time, the effect of ageing and impact of textile on the power deposition in a skin-equivalent model under near-field exposure induced by multi-beam radiating structures at 26 GHz and 60 GHz. An array of four Yagi antennas has been used as a representative example of 5G reconfigurable antennas. The maximum increase of the averaged absorbed power density with respect to the averaged value for adults is observed at 70 year (8.8% at 26 GHz and 6.9% at 60 GHz). The strongest decrease is for 5-years-old children (−4.5% at 26 GHz and -3.7% at 60 GHz). In presence of a textile, the absorbed power density can increase or decrease depending on the textile properties (thickness and permittivity) and on the thickness of the air gap between textile and skin. With cotton and wool (considered as representative textile materials) the maximum increase of the averaged absorbed power density is about 40% compared to the bare skin.


"At microwave frequencies, the difference in exposure levels between children and adults was investigated [3]–[5]. It was demonstrated that, up to 5.6 GHz, the whole-body-average specific absorption rate (SAR) in children can go beyond the exposure limits [6], [7] by 40%–45% whereas remaining below these limits for adults (given the same incident field) [5], [8]. A more recent study [9] investigated the whole-body average SAR using the child models specified by the Commission on Radiological Protection (ICRP) instead of the scaled adult phantoms."

"This study deals with the electromagnetic exposure under near-field conditions considering typical reconfigurable antennas at 26 GHz and 60 GHz. For the first time, the analysis is performed taking into account biological tissue permittivity variations with age and presence of a textile in proximity or in contact with skin."


Artificial EMG (Electromyogram) by WLAN-Exposure

L. von Klitzing. Artificial EMG by WLAN-Exposure. J Biostat Biometric App 6(1):101. 2021.


WLAN (wireless local area network) is used as an important worldwide communication-technique. By this, always there is an electromagnetic field exposure. In contrast to the ICNIRP-safety guidelines, whereby no bioeffect is possible by these low-energetic electromagnetic fields, we found artificial signals in the nervous system in dependence on WLAN- exposure.

Open access letter: http://www.annexpublishers.com/articles/JBIA/6101-Artificial-EMG-by-WLAN-Exposure.pdf


30 Hz, Could It Be Part of a Window Frequency for Cellular Response? (Review)

Olga García-Minguillán, Ceferino Maestú. 30 Hz, Could It Be Part of a Window Frequency for Cellular Response? Int J Mol Sci. 2021 Mar 31;22(7):3642. doi: 10.3390/ijms22073642


Many exogenous and endogenous risk factors have been proposed as precursors of brain tumors, including the exposure to non-ionizing electromagnetic fields. Nevertheless, there is still a debate among the scientific community about the hazard of the effects produced by non-ionizing radiation (NIR) because conflicting results have been found (number of articles reviewed >50). For that reason, to provide new evidence on the possible effects produced by exposure to NIR, we performed different studies with several combinations of extremely low frequencies, times, and field intensities in tumoral and non-tumoral cells. The results of our studies showed that cell viability was frequency dependent in glioblastoma cells. In fact, our results revealed that a frequency of 30 Hz-or even other frequencies close to 30 Hz-could constitute a window frequency determinant of the cellular response in tumoral and non-tumoral cells.


Response to “Cancerogenic effects of radiofrequency radiation: A statistical reappraisal”

Fiorella Belpoggi, Laura Falcioni, Simona Panzacchi, Daria Sgargi, Daniele Mandrioli. Response to “Cancerogenic effects of radiofrequency radiation: A statistical reappraisal." Environmental Research. 197, 2021,111067. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.envres.2021.111067.

No abstract.


Activation of matrix metalloproteinases and FoxO3a in HaCaT keratinocytes by radiofrequency electromagnetic field exposure

Ju Hwan Kim, Dong-Jun Kang, Jun-Sang Bae, Jai Hyuen Lee, Sangbong Jeon, Hyung-Do Choi, Nam Kim, Hyung-Gun Kim, Hak Rim Kim. Activation of matrix metalloproteinases and FoxO3a in HaCaT keratinocytes by radiofrequency electromagnetic field exposure. Sci Rep. 2021 Apr 7;11(1):7680. doi: 10.1038/s41598-021-87263-2.


As the skin is the largest body organ and critically serves as a barrier, it is frequently exposed and could be physiologically affected by radiofrequency electromagnetic field (RF-EMF) exposure. In this study, we found that 1760 MHz RF-EMF (4.0 W/kg specific absorption rate for 2 h/day during 4 days) exposure could induce intracellular reactive oxygen species (ROS) production in HaCaT human keratinocytes using 2',7'-dichlorofluorescin diacetate fluorescent probe analysis. However, cell growth and viability were unaffected by RF-EMF exposure. Since oxidative stress in the skin greatly influences the skin-aging process, we analyzed the skin senescence-related factors activated by ROS generation. Matrix metalloproteinases 1, 3, and 7 (MMP1, MMP3, and MMP7), the main skin wrinkle-related proteins, were significantly increased in HaCaT cells after RF-EMF exposure. Additionally, the gelatinolytic activities of secreted MMP2 and MMP9 were also increased by RF-EMF exposure. FoxO3a (Ser318/321) and ERK1/2 (Thr 202/Tyr 204) phosphorylation levels were significantly increased by RF-EMF exposure. However, Bcl2 and Bax expression levels were not significantly changed, indicating that the apoptotic pathway was not activated in keratinocytes following RF-EMF exposure. In summary, our findings show that exposure to 1760 MHz RF-EMF induces ROS generation, leading to MMP activation and FoxO3a and ERK1/2 phosphorylation. These data suggest that RF-EMF exposure induces cellular senescence of skin cells through ROS induction in HaCaT human keratinocytes.


In conclusion, exposure to 1760 MHz RF-EMF at 4 W/kg SAR induced intracellular ROS generation, which then stimulated MMPs (MMP1, 2, 3, 7, and 9) and activated the ERK1/2 (phospho-ERK1/2) and FoxO3a (phospho-FoxO3a) signaling pathways in HaCaT cells. Our results suggest that these changes induced by RF-EMF exposure would contribute to skin-aging processes.


1800 MHz Radiofrequency Electromagnetic Field Impairs Neurite Outgrowth Through Inhibiting EPHA5 Signaling

Chunhai Chen, Qinglong Ma, Ping Deng, Min Lin, Peng Gao, Mindi He, Yonghui Lu, Huifeng Pi, Zhixin He, Chao Zhou, Yanwen Zhang, Zhengping Yu, Lei Zhang. 1800 MHz Radiofrequency Electromagnetic Field Impairs Neurite Outgrowth Through Inhibiting EPHA5 Signaling. Front Cell Dev Biol. 2021 Apr 12;9:657623.doi: 10.3389/fcell.2021.657623.


The increasing intensity of environmental radiofrequency electromagnetic fields (RF-EMF) has increased public concern about its health effects. Of particular concern are the influences of RF-EMF exposure on the development of the brain. The mechanisms of how RF-EMF acts on the developing brain are not fully understood. Here, based on high-throughput RNA sequencing techniques, we revealed that transcripts related to neurite development were significantly influenced by 1800 MHz RF-EMF exposure during neuronal differentiation. Exposure to RF-EMF remarkably decreased the total length of neurite and the number of branch points in neural stem cells-derived neurons and retinoic acid-induced Neuro-2A cells. The expression of Eph receptors 5 (EPHA5), which is required for neurite outgrowth, was inhibited remarkably after RF-EMF exposure. Enhancing EPHA5 signaling rescued the inhibitory effects of RF-EMF on neurite outgrowth. Besides, we identified that cAMP-response element-binding protein (CREB) and RhoA were critical downstream factors of EPHA5 signaling in mediating the inhibitory effects of RF-EMF on neurite outgrowth. Together, our finding revealed that RF-EMF exposure impaired neurite outgrowth through EPHA5 signaling. This finding explored the effects and key mechanisms of how RF-EMF exposure impaired neurite outgrowth and also provided a new clue to understanding the influences of RF-EMF on brain development.


Maternal Use of Induction Heating Cookers During Pregnancy and Birth Outcomes: The Kyushu Okinawa Maternal and Child Health Study

Akiko Tokinobu, Keiko Tanaka, Masashi Arakawa, Yoshihiro Miyake. Maternal Use of Induction Heating Cookers During Pregnancy and Birth Outcomes: The Kyushu Okinawa Maternal and Child Health Study. Bioelectromagnetics. 2021 Apr 12. doi: 10.1002/bem.22339.


The effects of exposure to intermediate-frequency electromagnetic fields (IF-EMFs) during pregnancy on birth outcomes are uncertain. We investigated the association between the use of induction heating (IH) cookers, which are major sources of IF-EMFs, during pregnancy and preterm birth (PTB), low birth weight (LBW), small-for-gestational-age (SGA), and birth weight, using data from a prebirth cohort study in Japan. Study participants were 1,565 mothers with singleton pregnancies and the babies born from these pregnancies. We collected the data presented here using self-administered questionnaires. An adjustment was made for maternal age, region of residence, number of children, family structure, maternal education, maternal employment, maternal alcohol intake, smoking during pregnancy, maternal body mass index, baby's sex, and gestational age at birth. IH cooker use during pregnancy was independently associated with a reduced risk of PTB: the adjusted odds ratio was 0.28 (95% confidence interval: 0.07-0.78). IH cooker use during pregnancy was not associated with LBW, SGA, or birth weight. This is the first study to show that IH cooker use during pregnancy is independently inversely associated with PTB.



Effects of Long-Term Exposure of Intermediate Frequency Magnetic Fields (20 kHz, 360 µT) on the Development, Pathological Findings, and Behavior of Female Mice

Alexander Lerchl, Karen Drees Née Grote, Isabel Gronau, Dirk Fischer, Julia Bauch, Axel Hoppe. Effects of Long-Term Exposure of Intermediate Frequency Magnetic Fields (20 kHz, 360 µT) on the Development, Pathological Findings, and Behavior of Female Mice. Bioelectromagnetics. 2021 Apr 6. doi: 10.1002/bem.22337.


The use of magnetic fields in the intermediate-frequency (IF) range to wirelessly charge electric cars with power transfer in the kilowatt range has become increasingly widespread, leading to unavoidable stray fields in the microtesla range. Only a handful of studies have assessed the potential biological risks associated with exposure to such fields. We exposed female mice (n = 80 per group) to either 20 kHz, 360 µT (rms), or sham in Helmholtz coils to conduct a blind design study. Exposure started at 3 months of age (24 h/day). Body mass was recorded every 1-2 weeks. At 10 months of age, three behavioral tests were performed on 24 animals per group. Three months later, the mice were sacrificed and organs (brain, liver, kidney, spleen, and lung) were removed and prepared for microscopic analysis. Our findings demonstrate no differences in the development of body mass and survival rates (96% and 89%, respectively). Similarly, no significant differences were observed in tumor incidence rates. When it comes to behavioral tests, the 8-arm maze results revealed no significant differences. In contrast, the Rotarod data were significantly (P < 0.001) different with longer retention times seen in the exposed mice. In the open field, the number of supported rears was significantly lower (P < 0.01), whereas the other endpoints did not show any differences. Overall, our data reveal no adverse effects of exposure to 20 kHz, 360 µT on the development and tumor incidences, while the significant differences in the behavioral tests may indicate higher levels of alertness in mice.


Our results indicate that exposure to IF‐MF does not increase the risk of pathological findings. However, in this study, only brain, liver, kidney, spleen, and lung tissue were analyzed for neoplastic lesions; the OECD guidelines recommend that some 40 tissues should be analyzed. Another potential limitation of our study is the relatively short exposure period of 10 months (OECD recommends 24 months of treatment). Yet another, but unavoidable, limitation was that for technical reasons the exposure could not be performed during the behavioral experiments. This is because interference of the strong magnetic field with the equipment (CCD camera or Rotarod) would inevitably have led to the person performing the experiment knowing whether or not the animals were being exposed....

It is also pertinent to understand the limitations of animal models as predictors of human biology. Therefore, the comparability and applicability of the results to humans need to be verified. Furthermore, this study only examined female mice and it is well‐established that sex plays a crucial role in terms of cancer incidence, prognosis, and mortality [Zhu et al., 2019]. Therefore, further long‐term studies that include male animals are needed to investigate the biological impact of IF‐MF exposure....

Taken together, the data presented in this study indicate some behavioral effects in the exposed animals, while no differences were observed in growth and tumorigenesis between exposed and control mice. The potentially increased stress levels must be regarded as mild since they did not cause a drop in body mass, which is a very sensitive parameter for stress in rodents [Jeong et al., 2013]. Therefore, the overall results do not indicate that chronic exposure to 20 kHz magnetic fields at 360 µT poses a health risk. The overall conclusion of this study as well as of data from the literature is that there is a lack of evidence that IF‐MF exposure contributes to any significant behavioral changes or influences growth or malignancy in the female mice model.

My note: According to Table 1, the exposed mice had a total of 17 pathological findings vs. 11 in the control mice.


Classification of the Laptop’s Extremely Low Frequency Magnetic Field With Alternating Current and Battery

Dejan Tanikić, Alessia Amelio. Classification of the Laptop’s Extremely Low Frequency Magnetic Field With Alternating Current and Battery. 2021 20th International Symposium INFOTEH-JAHORINA (INFOTEH). 17-19 March 2021.DOI: 10.1109/INFOTEH51037.2021.9400677


The magnetic field exposure of the laptop users represents an important task to be researched. This paper proposes an artificial neural network model for the prediction of the extremely low-frequency magnetic field produced by laptops. It is based on measurement data of 10 laptops and a 3-input vector representing typical laptop characteristics. The novelty of the proposed model is that it is created in order to predict the level of the magnetic field emission produced by a laptop when it is powered by both alternating current and battery. Then, the obtained data are classified by the self-organizing map method to describe the safe or dangerous level of a laptop. At the end, a few suggestions are proposed for a safer use of the laptops.


The magnetic field is measured at 18 measurement points in the laptop’s neighbourhood. These points are at the top (T1…T9) and at the bottom (B1…B9) of the laptop [6], [10].

Also, we measured the magnetic field 10 cm away from the proposed measurement points, i.e. outside the laptops. The obtained levels of the magnetic field were around or below 0.01 μT. Hence, they can be considered as a background magnetic field.

The general conclusion is that the value of the magnetic field is almost 2 times higher when the laptops are AC powered. The predicted values of the magnetic field of the 10 laptops were used to divide the laptops in 5 (4) clusters, which represent the grade of the magnetic field of each laptop. Furthermore, if we compare the ELF magnetic field emission and the classes extracted by the clustering process, we can obtain the results given in Tables 34 for AC and battery powered laptops, respectively.

This paper proposed a new ANN model for estimating the ELF magnetic field emission based on the measurement of 10 laptops. The measurement of the magnetic field was performed at the top and at the bottom of each laptop which was AC and battery powered. Then, from the ANN predicted data, a SOM based clustering was performed. The obtained classification was used to clearly define a level ranking of the laptops according to their ELF magnetic field emission. In the end, important suggestions for a safer use of the laptops were proposed. In the future, we are planning to extend the analysis to the tablet devices


Honey Bee Proteolytic System and Behavior Parameters under the Influence of an Electric Field at 50 Hz and Variable Intensities for a Long Exposure Time

Paweł Migdał, Agnieszka Murawska, Aneta Strachecka, Paweł Bieńkowski, Adam Roman. Honey Bee Proteolytic System and Behavior Parameters under the Influence of an Electric Field at 50 Hz and Variable Intensities for a Long Exposure Time.
Animals (Basel). 2021 Mar 18;11(3):863. doi: 10.3390/ani11030863.


The effect of an artificial electromagnetic field on organisms is a subject of extensive public debate and growing numbers of studies. Our study aimed to show the effect of an electromagnetic field at 50 Hz and variable intensities on honey bee proteolytic systems and behavior parameters after 12 h of exposure. Newly emerged worker bees were put into cages and exposed to a 50 Hz E-field with an intensity of 5.0 kV/m, 11.5 kV/m, 23.0 kV/m, or 34.5 kV/m. After 12 h of exposure, hemolymph samples were taken for protease analysis, and the bees were recorded for behavioral analysis. Six behaviors were chosen for observation: walking, flying, self-grooming, contact between individuals, stillness, and wing movement. Bees in the control group demonstrated the highest number of all behavior occurrences, except flying, and had the lowest protease activity. Bees in the experimental groups showed a lower number of occurrences of walking, self-grooming, and contacts between individuals than the control bees and had significantly higher protease activity than the control bees (except that of alkaline proteases in the 23.0 kV/m group).

Simple Summary

The amount of electromagnetic field (EMF) in the environment emitted by electrical and electronic devices, mobile phone masts, or power lines is constantly increasing. Honey bees can be exposed to the EMF in the environment, and the influence of this factor on bees is still under consideration. Studying the impact of EMF on honey bees can give valuable information about whether it poses a threat to them. The honey bee is an important pollinator, playing a significant role in maintaining biodiversity and food production. Our research showed that a 50 Hz electric field at various intensities reduced the number of occurrences of walking, contacts between individuals, and self-grooming, and increased the activity of proteases, which are involved in the immune system response.


The amount of artificial electromagnetic field in the environment is constantly increasing, thus the honey bee is exposed to this factor. In our study, bees in the control group demonstrated the highest number of all behavior occurrences, except flying, and had the lowest activity of all types of proteases. Bees in the experimental groups showed a lower number of walking, self-grooming, and contact between individual occurrences than control bees and had higher protease activity than control bees. Our results show that an E-field is potential harmful factor to the honey bee. However, we do not know if the changes in behavior and protease activity of the honey bee after E-field exposure persist and for how long. It would be important to investigate behavior parameters and biochemical markers at different time intervals after the end of exposure to an E-field. It can be helpful to determine the interaction between the biochemical marker activity and behavioral parameters. Such an observation could provide a better understanding of the immune response of the honey bee exposing to environmental stressors.


Extremely Low-Frequency Electromagnetic Fields Entrain Locust Wingbeats

Sebastian Shepherd, Christopher W Jackson, Suleiman M Sharkh, Hitoshi Aonuma, Eugenio E Oliveira, Philip L Newland. Extremely Low-Frequency Electromagnetic Fields Entrain Locust Wingbeats. Bioelectromagnetics. 2021 Apr 6. doi: 10.1002/bem.22336.


Extremely low-frequency electromagnetic fields (ELF EMFs) have been shown to impact the behavior and physiology of insects. Recent studies have highlighted the need for more research to determine more specifically how they affect flying insects. Here, we ask how locust flight is affected by acute exposure to 50 Hz EMFs. We analyzed the flights of individual locusts tethered between a pair of copper wire coils generating EMFs of various frequency using high-speed video recording. The mean wingbeat frequency of tethered locusts was 18.92 ± 0.27 Hz. We found that acute exposure to 50 Hz EMFs significantly increased absolute change in wingbeat frequency in a field strength-dependent manner, with greater field strengths causing greater changes in wingbeat frequency. The effect of EMFs on wingbeat frequency depended on the initial wingbeat frequency of a locust, with locusts flying at a frequency lower than 20 Hz increasing their wingbeat frequency, while locusts flying with a wingbeat frequency higher than 20 Hz decreasing their wingbeat frequency. During the application of 50 Hz EMF, the wingbeat frequency was entrained to a 2:5 ratio (two wingbeat cycles to five EMF cycles) of the applied EMF. We then applied a range of ELF EMFs that were close to normal wingbeat frequency and found that locusts entrained to the exact frequency of the applied EMF. These results show that exposure to ELF EMFs lead to small but significant changes in wingbeat frequency in locusts. We discuss the biological implications of the coordination of insect flight in response to electromagnetic stimuli.

Thursday, April 29, 2021

5G Wireless Technology: Cutting Through the Hype

See the bottom of this page for links to recent news stories about 5G hype.

The CTIA, the wireless industry trade association, has launched an advertising campaign entitled, "The Global Race to 5G." The ads claim that unless the U.S. wins this "global race" to become the first nation to deploy the fifth generation of wireless technology or 5G, we will not reap the economic benefits of this technology. 

The CTIA claims that "compared to today's 4G networks, 5G will be up to 100x faster, support 100x more devices, and provide a 5x faster response time." Moreover, the association asserts that the nation's wireless industry is prepared to invest $275 billion in 5G which will yield three million new jobs and $500 billion in economic growth. If we win the global race, the "next-generation of wireless will drive $2.7 trillion of new economic benefits to American families and businesses."

The CTIA has denied for decades that there are adverse health effects from exposure to wireless radiation. By establishing a revolving door between its leadership and the FCC's, the CTIA ensures that the federal regulatory agency maintains the inadequate, obsolete radio frequency exposure limits which the FCC adopted in 1996.

The FCC and federal health agencies have been oblivious to the health concerns raised by more than 240 scientists from 44 nations who have published peer-reviewed research on the biologic or health effects of exposure to electromagnetic fields.

More than 400 scientists and medical doctors from over 40 countries signed a declaration demanding a moratorium on the planned increase of cell antennas for 5G deployment in the European Union. Concerns over health effects from higher radiation exposure include potential neurological impacts, infertility, and cancer.

The following excerpts were extracted from a 23-page special report from RCR Wireless that cuts through much of the hype surrounding the deployment of 5G. The excerpts are direct quotes from the report. RCR Wireless is a trade publication that has reported on the wireless industry and wireless technology since 1982.

Transitioning to a 5G World

Kelly Hill, RCR Wireless, November, 2017

Excerpts from the Report
Hype is certainly high for 5G, given that the industry is still technically in a pre-standard phase and that standalone 5G systems are still some time off.
5G is coming even faster than originally expected. In December, the first official specification from the Third Generation Partnership Project is expected to be released; 5G New Radio will finally make its standardized debut – although like Long Term Evolution, 5G will continue to evolve and be refined in the coming years.
“5G will not replace LTE,” Rysavy Research concluded in an August report for the GSMA. “In most deployments, the two technologies will be tightly integrated and co-exist through at least the late-2020s.”
Although the industry is preparing for 5G, LTE [4G] capabilities will continue to improve in LTE Advanced Pro through the rest of the decade,”  Rysavy wrote .... 5G will eventually play an important role, but it must be timed appropriately so that the jump in capability justifies the new investment.
KT, for example, plans to support two different frequencies from the get-go in its 5G network: 3.5 GHz as an anchor with better propagation, complemented by 28 GHz in dense areas. Given that networks are expected to initially be 4G/5G networks, testing will have to continue to support LTE alongside 5G.
Hurtarte of LitePoint noted that although “millimeter wave” tends to be treated as one category, there are significant differences between the components and frequency planning needed at 28 GHz versus 39 GHz. In addition, although some frequencies are widely agreed upon, there are other frequencies that may get the nod for 5G use: 24 GHz in China, possibly 40-43 Ghz and possibly even above 70 GHz.
There are some major challenges to the success of 5G, which are all interrelated: the move to mmwave, the need for ultra-density, and the question of when the economics of 5G will actually work well enough to take off.
Mmwave [millimeter wave] provides the huge bandwidths that are needed for fast speeds and high capacity, but the higher the frequency, the shorter its range and more susceptible it is to being easily blocked and reflected (thus the need for beamforming in order to focus the energy more tightly). Seasonal foliage, energy efficient glass windows with special coatings, and standard housing materials all present effective barriers to mmwave reaching indoors to customer premise equipment, operators and vendors have found in their field testing.
Denisowski pointed out that fixed wireless is one thing, but moving objects are another. Obstruction, not radiating sources of energy, is likely to be the main cause of interference in 5G systems: vehicles driving back and forth, or even wind farms can scatter microwave radiation.
Density of foliage “plays a big role,” said Thadasina of Samsung, which has been working with a number of carriers on 5G trials. “What we found is that for the mmwave signal, as it penetrated through trees, the thickness of the trees matters. Initially the impedence offered by foliage is linear, but beyond a certain density it is no longer linear … it kills the signal.” Building materials are well-known to play a role in transmission from outdoors to indoors, he added, but the angle of incidence does as well. The difference between 30 degrees to 60 degrees to 90 degrees can create additional impedance, Thadasina said, “some of those things make it challenging in terms of closing the link.” Moisture levels play a role as well, he said ....
Fiber is fuel for 5G, and its prevalence is increasing. SNL Kagan found earlier this year that global fiber residential investment increased sharply in 2016, and that fiber is on track to reach 1 billion subscribers by 2021. Meanwhile, in the U.S., Vertical Systems Group reported that 49.6% of multi-tenant and enterprise buildings had access to fiber last year, compared to only 10% in 2004.

Deloitte said earlier this year that it expects to see $130 billion-$150 billion in “deep fiber” investment in the U.S. over 5-7 years, due to a combination of broadband competition, ensuring 5G readiness, and expanding fiber into new areas.

Murphy of Nokia said that operators should expect that, depending on which frequency they deploy in, they will need 2.5 to 10 times as many sites as they have now. That’s a tall order, especially given that small cell sites in cellular frequencies can take 18 to 24 months to get site approvals – scaling small cells has been hard enough in LTE, with the market moving much more slowly than analysts had predicted or carriers would like.
“It’s going to take a long time,” Einbinder said. “Constructing a cell tower is hard. A micro-cell has a lot of the same issues”: power and fiber and access to a site, which a community may be reluctant to grant – California, for instance, recently rejected a measure passed at the state level that would have streamlined processes for small cells.
... Einbinder thinks that some communities will take initiative and want to be 5G economic centers. While that’s encouraging for operators, it may also mean that 5G coverage maps look very different from the familiar red, blue, yellow and magenta maps indicating nationwide coverage. “The resulting coverage maps might have a lot more to do with [communities] than any economic or technological drivers – it’s going to be driven by local preference.”
While early work estimated that as many as 40 to 50 homes could be covered by a single fixed wireless site, according to Rouault of EXFO, that number has turned out to be around five in testing because of the complexity of beamforming necessary to support multiple homes. “It’s not at the point we would say the verdict is out,” Rouault added. “The technology is proven to work, but to make the business case work, the scale is the problem right now.”
So the biggest question is where a breakthrough is going to happen that becomes the point at which 5G becomes a more attractive investment than LTE. “What can 5G do that other systems can’t? This is where there is no clear answer,” said Hemant Minocha, EVP for device and IoT at TEOCO. There is no 5G requirement for IoT [Internet of Things], he points out, and the business case hasn’t yet been proven out for ultra-low latency (not to  mention that LTE is capable of lower latency than it has achieved to this point in networks).
Key Takeaways:
• The industry is moving quickly toward 5G, with momentum in testing and trials. The first official 5G specification from 3GPP is expected in December, with a protocol-focused release coming in the spring of 2018.
• Many features and architectures in LTE, particularly gigabit LTE, will both underpin future 5G networks and provide lessons learned in making 5G systems work. These include dense fiber deployment, higher-order and massive MIMO, network slicing, virtualization, and mobile edge computing.
• The biggest challenge for 5G lies in a millimeter-wave based RAN, with significant challenges ahead for designing and deploying a workable, optimized and profitable mmwave network on a large scale.
The RCR Wireless report, "Transitioning to a 5G World," can be downloaded at http://bit.ly/5Ghype.

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