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J Appl Toxicol. 2012 Feb;32(2):81-7. doi: 10.1002/jat.1724. Epub 2011 Sep 20.

Can cytogenetics explain the possible association between exposure to extreme low-frequency magnetic fields and Alzheimer's disease?

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Scientific Institute of Public Health, Laboratory of Toxicology, J. Wytsmanstreet 14, B-1050, Brussels, Belgium.


Recently, a number of epidemiological studies have suggested that occupational as well as residential exposure to extreme low-frequency electromagnetic fields (ELF-EMFs) may be a risk factor for Alzheimer's disease. This is not proven yet and there are no known biological mechanisms to explain this alleged association. Alzheimer's disease is characterized by a number of events that have, at least partially, a genetic origin. In particular, trisomy of chromosomes 17 and 21 seems to be involved. Overall ELF-EMFs have not been identified as genotoxic agents, but there are some papers in the scientific literature that indicate that they may enhance the effects of agents that are known to induce mutations or tumors. There are also some indications that ELF-EMFs may induce aneuploïdy. This opens some perspectives for investigating the alleged association between ELF-EMFs and Alzheimer's. This paper reviews the possibility of a cytogenetic association between the electromagnetic fields and Alzheimer's disease.

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