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18/07/2006

Extremely Low-Frequency Electromagnetic Field (ELF-EMF) does not Affect the Expression of α3, α5 and α7 Nicotinic Receptor Subunit Genes in SH-SY5Y Neuroblastoma Cell Line

Ruth Adele Antonini, Roberta Benfante, Cecilia Gotti, Milena Moretti, Niels Kuster, Juergen Schuderer, Francesco Clementi and Diego Fornasari, in Toxicology Letters, Volume 164, Number 3, pp. 191–288, July 2006


Alterations in the expression and/or activity of neuronal nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) have been implicated in various neurological disorders such as Alzheimer's disease (AD), Parkinson's disease and schizophrenia. Epidemiological studies have shown that exposure to electromagnetic fields (EMF) may contribute to the pathogenesis of such neurodegenerative diseases. In order to investigate whether an extremely low-frequency electromagnetic field (ELF-EMF) may affect the expression of the molecules involved in neurodegenerative processes, we studied the exposure of the SH-SY5Y human neuroblastoma cell line to a 50Hz power-line magnetic field; various magnetic flux densities and exposure times were applied. This study found that the expression of some relevant components of the cholinergic nicotinic system, which is one of the most affected neurotransmission systems in AD, did not undergo any change at molecular level by environmental exposure to ELF-EMF.

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