DOI: 10.1101/480665Nov 28, 2018Paper

Millimetre wave radiation activates leech nociceptors via TRPV1-like receptor sensitisation

BioRxiv : the Preprint Server for Biology
Sergii RomanenkoVincent P Wallace


Due to new applications such as wireless communications, security scanning, and imaging the presence of artificially generated high frequency (30-300 GHz) millimetre-wave (MMW) signals in the environment is increasing. Although safe exposure levels have been set by studies involving direct thermal damage to tissue, there is evidence that MMWs can have an impact on cellular function, including neurons. Earlier in vitro studies have shown that exposure levels well below the recommended safe limit of 1mW/cm2 cause changes in the action potential (AP) firing rate, resting potential, and AP pulse shape of sensory neurons in leech preparations, as well as alter neuronal properties in rat cortical brain slices; these effects differ from changes induced by direct heating. In this paper we examine continuous MMW power (up to 80 mW/cm2 at 60 GHz) and evaluate the responses in the thermosensitive primary nociceptors of the medicinal leech (genus Richardsonianus Australis). The results show that MMW exposure causes an almost two-fold decrease in the threshold for activation of the AP compared with conductive heating (3.6±0.4 mV vs. 6.5±0.4 mV respectively). Our analysis suggests that MMW exposure mediated threshold alterations are not caus...Continue Reading

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Action Potentials
Cerebral Cortex
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