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Bioelectromagnetics. 2019 Sep 29. doi: 10.1002/bem.22218. [Epub ahead of print]

Melatonin Levels and Low-Frequency Magnetic Fields in Humans and Rats: New Insights From a Bayesian Logistic Regression.

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Univ Lyon, Univ Lyon1, ENS de Lyon, CNRS, Centre de Recherche en Astrophysique de Lyon UMR5574, Saint-Genis-Laval, France.
Department of Mathematics and Statistics, The Open University, Milton Keys, UK.


The present analysis revisits the impact of extremely low-frequency magnetic fields (ELF-MF) on melatonin (MLT) levels in human and rat subjects using both a parametric and non-parametric approach. In this analysis, we use 62 studies from review articles. The parametric approach consists of a Bayesian logistic regression (LR) analysis and the non-parametric approach consists of a Support Vector analysis, both of which are robust against spurious/false results. Both approaches reveal a unique well-ordered pattern, and show that human and rat studies are consistent with each other once the MF strength is restricted to cover the same range (with B ≲ 50 μT). In addition, the data reveal that chronic exposure (longer than ∼22 days) to ELF-MF appears to decrease MLT levels only when the MF strength is below a threshold of ~30 μT ( log B thr [ μ T ] = 1 . 4 - 0 . 4 + 0 . 7 ), i.e., when the man-made ELF-MF intensity is below that of the static geomagnetic field. Studies reporting an association between ELF-MF and changes to MLT levels and the opposite (no association with ELF-MF) can be reconciled under a single framework. Bioelectromagnetics. 00:00-00, 2019.


electro-magnetic field (EMF); epidemiology; melatonin; non-ionizing radiation; statistics: Bayesian


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