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Bioelectromagnetics. 2001 Dec;22(8):529-46.

Nonlinear dynamical law governs magnetic field induced changes in lymphoid phenotype.

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Department of Orthopaedic Surgery, LSU Health Sciences Center, Shreveport, Louisiana 71130-3932, USA.


The results of many different types of animal and human studies dealing with the biological effects of exposure to low frequency electromagnetic fields (EMFs) have consistently been both positive and negative. We addressed the question of why this pattern had occurred so commonly in biological studies involving exposure to EMFs and hypothesized that it stemmed from the prevalent use of a linear model to characterize what are inherently nonlinear input-output relationships. The hypothesis was tested by analyzing biological data using a novel statistical procedure that could be adjusted to detect either nonlinear or linear effects. The reliability of the procedure was established using positive and negative controls and by comparison with the results obtained from sampling a known nonlinear system. In four independent experiments, male and female mice were exposed continuously to 0.1 or 0.5 mT, 60 Hz, for 175 days, and the effect on 20 immune parameters was measured using flow cytometry and functional assays. In each experiment, EMF exposure resulted in statistically significant changes in lymphoid phenotype when and only when the response of the animals to the fields was analyzed as if it were governed by nonlinear laws. Our results suggest that the pattern of inconsistency in the EMF bioeffects studies is an artifact resulting from an incorrect choice of the conceptual model for the relation between the field and the biological effect it causally determines.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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