Cytogenetic studies in human blood lymphocytes exposed in vitro to radiofrequency radiation at a cellular telephone frequency (835.62 MHz, FDMA)

Vijayalaxmi, W. F. Pickard, K. S. Bisht, B. Z. Leal, M. L. Meltz, J. L. Roti Roti, W. L. Straube, E. G. Moros

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71 Scopus citations


Freshly collected peripheral blood samples from four healthy human volunteers were diluted with RPMI 1640 tissue culture medium and exposed in sterile T-75 tissue culture flasks in vitro for 24 h to 835.62 MHz radiofrequency (RF) radiation, a frequency employed for customer-to-base station transmission of cellular telephone communications. An analog signal was used, and the access technology was frequency division multiple access (FDMA, continuous wave). A nominal net forward power of 68 W was used, and the nominal power density at the center of the exposure flask was 860 W/m2. The mean specific absorption rate in the exposure flask was 4.4 or 5.0 W/kg. Aliquots of diluted blood that were sham-exposed or exposed in vitro to an acute dose of 1.50 Gy of γ radiation were used as negative or positive controls. Immediately after the exposures, the lymphocytes were stimulated with a mitogen, phytohemagglutinin, and cultured for 48 or 72 h to determine the extent of genetic damage, as assessed from the frequencies of chromosomal aberrations and micronuclei. The extent of alteration in the kinetics of cell proliferation was determined from the mitotic indices in 48-h cultures and from the incidence of binucleate cells in 72-h cultures. The data indicated no significant differences between RF-radiation- and sham-exposed lymphocytes with respect to mitotic indices, incidence of exchange aberrations, excess fragments, binucleate cells, and micronuclei. In contrast, the response of the lymphocytes exposed to γ radiation was significantly different from both RF-radiation- and sham-exposed cells for all of these indices. Thus, under the experimental conditions tested, there is no evidence for the induction of chromosomal aberrations and micronuclei in human blood lymphocytes exposed in vitro for 24 h to 835.62 MHz RF radiation at SARs of 4.4 or 5.0 W/kg.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)113-121
Number of pages9
JournalRadiation Research
Issue number1
StatePublished - Feb 19 2001

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biophysics
  • Radiation
  • Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging


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