Electromagnetic Field (EMF) Radiation Alters Estrogen Release from the Pig Myometrium during the Peri-Implantation Period

Drzewiecka EM, Kozlowska W, Zmijewska A, Wydorski PJ, Franczak A. Electromagnetic Field (EMF) Radiation Alters Estrogen Release from the Pig Myometrium during the Peri-Implantation Period. Int J Mol Sci. 2021 Mar 13;22(6):2920. doi: 10.3390/ijms22062920. PMID: 33805726; PMCID: PMC7999543.


An electromagnetic field (EMF) may affect the functions of uterine tissues. This study hypothesized that EMF changes the estrogenic activity of pig myometrium during the peri-implantation period. Tissue was collected on days 15–16 of the gestation and incubated in the presence of EMF (50 and 120 Hz, 2 and 4 h). The cytochrome P450 aromatase type 3 (CYP19A3) and hydroxysteroid 17β dehydrogenase type 4 (HSD17B4) mRNA transcript abundance, cytochrome P450arom (aromatase), and 17β hydroxysteroid dehydrogenase 17βHSD) protein abundance and estrone (E1) and estradiol-17β (E2) release were examined using Real-Time PCR, Western blot and radioimmunoassay. Selected myometrial slices were treated with progesterone (P4) to determine whether it functions as a protector against EMF. CYP19A3 mRNA transcript abundance in slices treated with EMF was less at 50 Hz (2 h) and greater at 120 Hz (2 and 4 h). HSD17B4 mRNA transcript was greater in slices treated with EMF at 120 Hz (2 h). Progesterone diminished EMF-related effects on CYP19A3 and HSD17B4. When P4 was added, EMF had suppressive (50 and 120 Hz, 2 h) or enhancing (50 Hz, 4 h) effects on aromatase abundance. The E1 release was lower after 4 h of EMF treatment at 50 Hz and P4 did not protect myometrial E1 release. In conclusion, EMF alters the synthesis and release of E1 and did not affect E2 release in the myometrium during the peri-implantation period.

5. Conclusions

In the myometrial tissue of pigs during the peri-implantation period, EMF treatment affects the potential for the synthesis of estrogens. The consequences of EMF radiation in the myometrium may depend on the basal tissue potential for the production of estrogens. The inclusion of P4 in the culture medium diminishes most of the observed EMF treatment-related effects on the level of transcriptional processes that result in the production of mRNA transcripts for these steroidogenic enzymes in the myometrium of pigs. On the contrary, on the level of translation processes that result in protein synthesis, P4 may sensitize myometrium to EMF radiation. Importantly, EMF at a low frequency of 50 Hz decreases myometrial E1 release after a relatively long (4 h) treatment duration, with or without the P4 inclusion and does not alter E2 release. In the pig myometrium, EMF leads to lowered E1 release. Thus, this study provides evidence that EMF can be recognized as a potent disruptor of steroidogenesis in the uterus of females during the peri-implantation period.


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