Biological effects of non-ionizing electromagnetic fields: Two sides of a coin

Timur Saliev, Dinara Begimbetova, Abdul Razak Masoud, Bakhyt Matkarimov

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

79 Citations (Scopus)


Controversial, sensational and often contradictory scientific reports have triggered active debates over the biological effects of electromagnetic fields (EMFs) in literature and mass media the last few decades. This could lead to confusion and distraction, subsequently hampering the development of a univocal conclusion on the real hazards caused by EMFs on humans. For example, there are lots of publications indicating that EMF can induce apoptosis and DNA strand-breaks in cells. On the other hand, these effects could rather be beneficial, in that they could be effectively harnessed for treatment of various disorders, including cancer. This review discusses and analyzes the results of various in vitro, in vivo and epidemiological studies on the effects of non-ionizing EMFs on cells and organs, including the consequences of exposure to the low and high frequencies EM spectrum. Emphasis is laid on the analysis of recent data on the role of EMF in the induction of oxidative stress and DNA damage. Additionally, the impact of EMF on the reproductive system has been discussed, as well as the relationship between EM radiation and blood cancer. Apart from adverse effects, the therapeutic potential of EMFs for clinical use in different pathologies is also highlighted.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)25-36
Number of pages12
JournalProgress in Biophysics and Molecular Biology
Publication statusPublished - Jan 2019


  • Bio-effect
  • Blood cancer
  • DNA damage
  • Electromagnetic field
  • Reproduction
  • Therapy

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biophysics
  • Molecular Biology


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