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Medical/biological Study (experimental study)

The effect of melatonin on body mass and behaviour of rats during an exposure to microwave radiation from mobile phone. med./biol.

By: Sokolovic D, Djordjevic B, Kocic G, Babovic P, Ristic G, Stanojkovic Z, Sokolovic DM, Veljkovic A, Jankovic A, Radovanovic Z
Published in: Bratisl Lek Listy 2012; 113 (5): 265 - 269 (PubMed | Journal website)

Aim of study (according to author)
To determine body mass and behaviour changes in rats after a chronic microwave exposure with and without melatonin treatment.
Background/further details:
Rats were divided into 4 groups (n= 10 per group): 1.) control group treated with 0.9 % saline, 2.) treated with melatonin (2 mg/kg per day), 3.) exposed and 4.) exposed + melatonin (2 mg/kg per day).


General category: mobile communication system, mobile phone, GSM, microwaves, wireless transmitter (RF), co-exposure

Field characteristicsParameters
900 MHz
continuous wave (CW)
exposure duration: continuous for 4 h/day on 60 days
electric field strength: 9.88 V/m min value
electric field strength: 18.35 V/m max value
magnetic flux density: 4.68 µT min value
magnetic flux density: 8.69 µT max value
SAR: 0.043 W/kg min value (whole body)
SAR: 0.135 W/kg max value (whole body)

FIELD View further expo parameters

Exposed system:
animal (species/strain): rat/Wistar
whole body exposure

Endpoint/Measurement parameters/Methodology

investigation on living organism
investigated organ system: brain/CNS

time of investigation: during and after exposure

Main outcome of study (according to author)
Significant body mass reduction was noted in exposed animals when compared to the control group after 20, 40 and 60 days. An administration of melatonin (group 2) caused a significant increase in body weight after 20 days in comparison to the control group. Exposed rats, treated with melatonin, showed a significant increase in body mass after 20 days when compared to the exposed rats.
After 10 days of exposure, changes in the behavior of the rats occurred, which became more intensive with a maximum after 60 days: In both exposure groups, a reduced locomotor activity was noticed in comparison to the unexposed groups, but no differences between the exposure group with melatonin administration and the exposure group without melatonin administration occurred. The exposed animals, not treated with melatonin, showed more anxiety and agitation (more grooming, moving away from the source of exposure) and less exploratory behavior (less rearing) than the unexposed groups. The exposed animals treated with melatonin, showed less stress compared to the exposed rats without melatonin administration.
The authors conclude that microwave exposure could cause a body mass decrease and anxiety related behavior. However, treatment with melatonin could cause a reverse of those effects.

(Study character: medical/biological study, experimental study, full/main study)

Study funded by

Related articles i
Glossary: animals, anxiety, behavior, biological, brain, chronic, CNS, co-exposure, cognitive, control group, CW, electric field strength, endpoint, exposed, exposure, full/main study, GSM, locomotor activity, magnetic flux density, melatonin, microwave, mobile communication, mobile phone, open field, organism, rat/Wistar, rats, reduction, RF, SAR, significant, species, strain, stress, transmitter, whole body exposure
Exposure: mobile communication system, mobile phone, GSM, microwaves, wireless transmitter (RF), co-exposure

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