Continuous exposure to 60 Hz magnetic fields induces duration- and dose-dependent apoptosis of testicular germ cells


  • Hee-Sung Kim and Byung-Jae Park contributed equally to this study as co-first authors.


To evaluate duration- and dose-dependent effects of continuous exposure to a 60 Hz magnetic field (MF) on the testes in mice, BALB/c male mice were exposed to a 60 Hz MF at 100 μT for 24 h a day for 2, 4, 6, or 8 weeks, and at 2, 20, or 200 μT for 24 h a day for 8 weeks. Any exposures to MF did not significantly affect body or testicular masses. However, the apoptotic cells among testicular germ cells were increased duration-dependent at exposures of 100 μT for 6 and 8 weeks and dose-dependent at exposures of 20 and 200 μT for 8 weeks. The number of sperm in epididymis and the diameter of seminiferous tubule decreased in mice exposed to 100 and 200 μT for 8 weeks, respectively. To induce the apoptosis of testicular germ cell in mice, the minimum dose is 20 μT at continuous exposure to a 60 Hz MF for 8 weeks and the minimum duration is 6 weeks at continuous exposure of 100 μT. Taken together, these results suggest that continuous exposure to a 60 Hz MF might affect, duration- and dose-dependent biological processes including apoptotic cell death and spermatogenesis in the male reproductive system of mice. Bioelectromagnetics. 35:100–107, 2014. © 2013 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.