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Estimated whole-brain and lobe-specific radiofrequency electromagnetic fields doses and brain volumes in preadolescents

Cabré-Riera, Alba and Marroun, Hanan El and Muetzel, Ryan and van Wel, Luuk and Liorni, Ilaria and Thielens, Arno and Birks, Laura Ellen and Pierotti, Livia and Huss, Anke and Joseph, Wout and Wiart, Joe and Capstick, Myles and Hillegers, Manon and Vermeulen, Roel and Cardis, Elisabeth and Vrijheid, Martine and White, Tonya and Röösli, Martin and Tiemeier, Henning and Guxens, Mònica. (2020) Estimated whole-brain and lobe-specific radiofrequency electromagnetic fields doses and brain volumes in preadolescents. Environment international, 142. p. 105808.

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Abstract

To assess the association between estimated whole-brain and lobe-specific radiofrequency electromagnetic fields (RF-EMF) doses, using an improved integrated RF-EMF exposure model, and brain volumes in preadolescents at 9-12 years old.; Cross-sectional analysis in preadolescents aged 9-12 years from the Generation R Study, a population-based birth cohort set up in Rotterdam, The Netherlands (n = 2592). An integrated exposure model was used to estimate whole-brain and lobe-specific RF-EMF doses (mJ/kg/day) from different RF-EMF sources including mobile and Digital Enhanced Cordless Telecommunications (DECT) phone calls, other mobile phone uses than calling, tablet use, laptop use, and far-field sources. Whole-brain and lobe-specific RF-EMF doses were estimated for all RF-EMF sources together (i.e. overall) and for three groups of RF-EMF sources that lead to a different pattern of RF-EMF exposure. Information on brain volumes was extracted from magnetic resonance imaging scans.; Estimated overall whole-brain RF-EMF dose was 84.3 mJ/kg/day. The highest overall lobe-specific dose was estimated in the temporal lobe (307.1 mJ/kg/day). Whole-brain and lobe-specific RF-EMF doses from all RF-EMF sources together, from mobile and DECT phone calls, and from far-field sources were not associated with global, cortical, or subcortical brain volumes. However, a higher whole-brain RF-EMF dose from mobile phone use for internet browsing, e-mailing, and text messaging, tablet use, and laptop use while wirelessly connected to the internet was associated with a smaller caudate volume.; Our results suggest that estimated whole-brain and lobe-specific RF-EMF doses were not related to brain volumes in preadolescents at 9-12 years old. Screen activities with mobile communication devices while wirelessly connected to the internet lead to low RF-EMF dose to the brain and our observed association may thus rather reflect effects of social or individual factors related to these specific uses of mobile communication devices. However, we cannot discard residual confounding, chance finding, or reverse causality. Further studies on mobile communication devices and their potential negative associations with brain development are warranted, regardless whether associations are due to RF-EMF exposure or to other factors related to their use.
Faculties and Departments:09 Associated Institutions > Swiss Tropical and Public Health Institute (Swiss TPH)
09 Associated Institutions > Swiss Tropical and Public Health Institute (Swiss TPH) > Department of Epidemiology and Public Health (EPH) > Environmental Exposures and Health > Physical Hazards and Health (Röösli)
UniBasel Contributors:Röösli, Martin
Item Type:Article, refereed
Article Subtype:Research Article
Publisher:Elsevier
ISSN:0160-4120
Note:Publication type according to Uni Basel Research Database: Journal article
Language:English
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Last Modified:23 Jun 2020 07:24
Deposited On:23 Jun 2020 07:24

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