Bioelectromagnetics. 2019 Oct; 40(7): 498–511.
Published online 2019 Sep 15. doi: 10.1002/bem.22217
Despite much research, gaps remain in knowledge about the potential health effects of exposure to radiofrequency (RF) fields. This study investigated the effects of early‐life exposure to pulsed long term evolution (LTE) 1,846 MHz downlink signals on innate mouse behavior. Animals were exposed for 30 min/day, 5 days/week at a whole‐body average specific energy absorption rate (SAR) of 0.5 or 1 W/kg from late pregnancy (gestation day 13.5) to weaning (postnatal day 21). A behavioral tracking system measured locomotor, drinking, and feeding behavior in the home cage from 12 to 28 weeks of age. The exposure caused significant effects on both appetitive behaviors and activity of offspring that depended on the SAR. Compared with sham‐exposed controls, exposure at 0.5 W/kg significantly decreased drinking frequency (P ≤ 0.000) and significantly decreased distance moved (P ≤ 0.001). In contrast, exposure at 1 W/kg significantly increased drinking frequency (P ≤ 0.001) and significantly increased moving duration (P ≤ 0.005). In the absence of other plausible explanations, it is concluded that repeated exposure to low‐level RF fields in early life may have a persistent and long‐term effect on adult behavior. Bioelectromagnetics. 2019;40:498–511. © 2019 The Authors. Bioelectromagnetics Published by Wiley Periodicals, Inc.
According to the authors: “while the present results provide useful input into any risk assessment regarding the impact of RF fields on human health, the SARs we used were above the restrictions recommended by ICNIRP for whole‐body exposures [ICNIRP, 1998].”