Modern life implies a constant exposure of living organisms to many sources of radiation, especially electromagnetic fields (EMFs) generated by our technological devices. The question of whether or not EMFs in the non-ionizing extremely low frequency (ELF) range can induce genotoxic effects is currently a subject of interest. People of industrialized societies are commonly exposed to EMFs and waves in a very broad range of frequencies, including power lines, telecommunications, and domestic and industrial equipment. In this review, we present controversial evidence from our research group and others of genotoxicity induced by ELF-EMFs, since scientific community consider EMF devices produce marginal amounts of energy, which does not justify any DNA alterations, together with conflicting laboratory results and few epidemiological studies. However, in 2002 the International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) categorized ELF-EMFs as being potential carcinogenic and genotoxic agents to humans. The aim of the present chapter is to discuss the role of ELM-EMFs on human genotoxicity.
Part of the book: Genotoxicity