SUMMARY: This article review looked at the research that has been completed on the effects of shortwave radiation on the biological system. It’s been shown that shortwave electromagnetic field (SW-EMF) was successful at slowing down the growth of certain cancer cells, promote healing in skin, help with pain management. However, SW-EMF has also been shown to damage sperm and affect the nervous and endocrine system. People exposed to more SW-EMF experienced headaches and dizziness more often. People who slept near SW-EMF had lower melatonin production levels and didn’t sleep as well. The last section of this paper looked at some of the cellular mechanisms that SW-EMF affected such as calcium-dependent signaling pathways and cell cycles like meiosis and mitosis. The authors tried to tie together the physiological effects with the cellular mechanics.
LESSON COMMENTS: Students will need to understand electromagnetic radiation and how it is generated/emitted from certain devices. The article can be divided up into sections, some are more practical (such as, the melatonin production) while others are more abstract (the last section about mechanisms). Students can choose to dig deeper into the research or set-up their own experiments showing the effects of SW-EMF on various organisms (plants or microorganisms in a jar or worms would be good subjects).
Yu, C., & Peng, R. Y. (2017). Biological effects and mechanisms of shortwave radiation: a review. Military Medical Research, 4, 24. doi:10.1186/s40779-017-0133-6