Effect of low frequency low energy pulsing electromagnetic field (PEMF) on x-ray-irradiated mice

R. Cadossi, V. R. Hentz, J. Kipp, R. Eiverson, G. Ceccherelli, P. Zucchini, G. Emilia, G. Torelli, C. Franceschi, A. Cossarizza

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


C3H/Km flora-defined mice were used to investigate the effect of exposure to pulsing electromagnetic field (PEMF) after total body x-ray irradiation. Prolonged exposure to PEMF had no effect on normal nonirradiated mice. When mice irradiated with different doses of x-ray (8.5 Gy, 6.8 Gy, and 6.3 Gy) were exposed to PEMF 24 h a day, we observed a more rapid decline in white blood cells (WBC) in the peripheral blood of mice exposed to PEMF at all the x-ray dosages used. No effect of exposure to PEMF was observed on the survival of the mice irradiated with 6.3 Gy and 8.5 Gy; in mice irradiated with 6.8 Gy, 2 out of 12 survived when exposed to PEMF as compared to 10 out of 12 control mice that were irradiated only. At day 4 after irradiation autoradiographic studies performed on bone marrow and spleen of 8.5-Gy-irradiated mice showed no difference between controls and mice exposed to PEMF, whereas on 6.8-Gy mice the bone marrow labeling index was lower in mice exposed to PEMF. In mice irradiated to 6.3 Gy we observed that the recovery of WBC in the peripheral blood was slowed in the mice exposed to PEMF and their body weight was significantly lower than in control mice that were irradiated only. The spleen and bone marrow of the mice irradiated to 6.3 Gy and sacrificed at days 4, 14, 20, and 25 after irradiation were analyzed by autoradiography to evaluate the labeling index. Half of the spleens from mice sacrificed at day 25 after irradiation were used to evaluate the RNA content. Autoradiography showed that in the spleen and bone marrow of control mice, there were more cells labeled with [3H]thymidine at days 4 and 14 and less at days 20 and 25 after irradiation in comparison with mice irradiated and exposed to PEMF. The Northern blot analysis of histone H3 and p53 protein RNAs extracted from the spleens at day 25 after irradiation showed a slight increase in cycling cells among spleens of mice exposed to PEMF. We suggest that the exposure of PEMF immediately after x-ray irradiation results in increased damage.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)88-95
Number of pages8
JournalExperimental Hematology
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 1989

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cancer Research
  • Cell Biology
  • Genetics
  • Hematology
  • Oncology
  • Transplantation


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