Letter | Published:

Mitotic delay in the slime mould Physarum polycephalum induced by low intensity 60 and 75 Hz electromagnetic fields

Naturevolume 254pages6667 (1975) | Download Citation



INTEREST in the biological effects of non-ionising radiation has increased in the past few years, with most workers focusing on radio frequency and microwave regions of the spectrum1−3. The ubiquity of low level 50–60 Hz electromagnetic radiation in the environment is a strong reason to investigate the biological effects of extremely low frequency radiation4,5. We have examined the effects of low intensity 60 and 75 Hz electromagnetic fields (EMFs) and have observed delays in the mitotic cycle of the myxomycete Physarum polycephalum after continuous exposure. Significant delays were observed after approximately 100 d of continuous exposure, corresponding to about 300 mitotic cycles.

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    Presman, A. S., Electromagnetic Fields and Life (Plenum, New York, 1970).

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    Marha, K., Musil, J., and Tuha, H., Electromagnetic Fields and the Life environment (San Francisco Press, San Francisco, 1971).

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    Johnson, C. C., and Guy, A. W., Proc. Inst. elect. Engrs., 60, 692–718 (1972).

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    Biological and Clinical Effects of Low-Frequency Magnetic and Electric Fields, Llaurado, J. G., Sances, A., and Battocletti, J. H. (eds) (Thomas, Springfield, Illinois, 1974).

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    Persinger, M. A., Ludwig, H. W., and Ossenkopp, K-P., Percept. Mot. Skills, 36, 1131–1159 (1973).

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    Rusch, H. P., in Advances in Cell Biology, 1 (edit. by Prescott, D. M., Goldstein, L., and McConkey, E.), 297–328 (Appleton-Century-Crofts, New York, 1970).

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    Schiebel, W., Ber. Deutsch. Dot. Ges., 86, 11–38 (1973).

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    Wait, J. R., Science, 178, 272 (1972).

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    Miller, D. A., in Biological and Clinical Effects of Low-Frequency Magnetic and Electric Fields, 62–69 (Thomas, Springfield, Illinois, 1974).

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  1. Division of Science, University of Wisconsin-Parkside, Kenosha, Wisconsin, 53140

    • , E. M. GOODMAN


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