Effects of Various Densities of 50 Hz Electromagnetic Field on Serum IL-9, IL-10, and TNF-α Levels

Hanie Mahaki, Naghi Jabarivasal, Khosro Sardanian, Alireza Zamani


Background: Extremely low-frequency electromagnetic fields (ELF-EMFs) are abundantly produced in modern societies. In recent years, interest in the possible effects of ELF-EMFs on the immune system has progressively increased.

Objective: To examine the effects of ELF-EMFs with magnetic flux densities of 1, 100, 500, and 2000 μT on the serum levels of interleukin (IL)-9, IL-10, and tumor necrosis factor-alpha (TNF-α).

Methods: 80 adult male rats were exposed to ELF-EMFs at a frequency of 50 Hz for 2 h/day for 60 days. The serum cytokines were measured at two phases of pre- and post-stimulation of the immune system by human serum albumin (HSA).

Results: Serum levels of IL-9 and TNF-α, as pro-inflammatory cytokines, were decreased due to 50 Hz EMFs exposure compared with the controls in the pre- and post-stimulation phases. On the contrary, exposures to 1 and 100 μT 50 Hz EMFs increased the levels of antiinflammatory cytokine, and IL-10 only in the pre-stimulation phase. In the post-stimulation phase, the mean level of serum IL-10 was not changed in the experimental groups.

Conclusion: The magnetic flux densities of 1 and 100 μT 50 Hz EMFs had more immunological effects than EMFs with higher densities. Exposure to 50 Hz EMFs may activate anti-inflammatory effects in rats, by down-modulation of pro-inflammatory cytokines (IL-9 and TNF-α) and induction of the anti-inflammatory cytokine (IL-10).


Interleukin-9; Interleukin-10; Tumor necrosis factor-alpha; Immunization; Electromagnetic fields

doi: 10.15171/ijoem.2020.1572

 pISSN: 2008-6520
 eISSN: 2008-6814

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