Experiments with rodents indicate that power‐frequency electric field (EF) or magnetic field (MF) exposure can suppress the normal nocturnal increase in melatonin concentration in pineal gland and blood. In a separate set of three experiments conducted with nonhuman primates, we did not observe melatonin suppression as a result of 6 weeks of day‐time exposure to combined 60 Hz electric and magnetic fields (E/MF) with regularly scheduled “slow” E/MF onsets/offsets. The study described here used a different exposure paradigm in which two baboons were exposed to E/MF with “rapid” E/MF onsets/offsets accompanied by EF transients not found with slowly ramped E/MF onset/offset; profound reductions in nocturnal serum melatonin concentration were observed in this experiment. If replicated in a more extensive experiment, the observation of melatonin suppression only in the presence of E/MF transients would suggest that very specific exposure parameters determine the effects of 60 Hz E/MF on melatonin. © 1995 Wiley‐Liss, Inc.
- baboon (Papio cynocephalus)
- pineal gland
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging