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Acta Biotheor. 2014 Jun;62(2):133-43. doi: 10.1007/s10441-014-9214-z. Epub 2014 Mar 19.

60 Hz electric field changes the membrane potential during burst phase in pancreatic β-cells: in silico analysis.

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Laboratory of Theoretical, Computational and Experimental Biophysics, Department of Animal Morphology and Physiology, Federal Rural University of Pernambuco, Recife, Pernambuco, Brazil.


The production, distribution and use of electricity can generate low frequency electric and magnetic fields (50-60 Hz). Considering that some studies showed adverse effects on pancreatic β-cells exposed to these fields; the present study aimed to analyze the effects of 60 Hz electric fields on membrane potential during the silent and burst phases in pancreatic β-cells using a mathematical model. Sinusoidal 60 Hz electric fields with amplitude ranging from 0.5 to 4 mV were applied on pancreatic β-cells model. The sinusoidal electric field changed burst duration, inter-burst intervals (silent phase) and spike sizes. The parameters above presented dose-dependent response with the voltage amplitude applied. In conclusion, theoretical analyses showed that a 60 Hz electric field with low amplitudes changes the membrane potential in pancreatic β-cells.

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