From Cell Biology to Tissue Engineering


Histopathological, immunohistochemical, and stereological analysis of the effect of Ginkgo biloba (Egb761) on the hippocampus of rats exposed to long-term cellphone radiation

Fikret Gevrek

Department of Histology and Embryology, Faculty of Medicine, Gaziosmanpasa University, Tokat, Turkey

Offprint requests to: Asst. Prof. Dr. Fikret Gevrek. Department of Histology and Embryology; Faculty of Medicine, Gaziosmanpasa University, Tokat 060300, Turkey. e-mail: fikret.gevrek@gmail.com

Summary. Cellular phones are major sources of electromagnetic radiation (EMR) that can penetrate the human body and pose serious health hazards. The increasingly widespread use of mobile communication systems has raised concerns about the effects of cellphone radiofrequency (RF) on the hippocampus because of its close proximity to radiation during cellphone use. The effects of cellphone EMR exposure on the hippocampus of rats and the possible counteractive effects of Ginkgo biloba (Egb761) were aimed to investigate. Rats were divided into three groups: Control, EMR, and EMR+Egb761. The EMR and EMR+Egb761 groups were exposed to cellphone EMR for one month. Egb761 was also administered to the EMR+Egb761 group. Specifically, we evaluated the effect of RF exposure on rat hippocampi at harmful EMR levels (0.96 W/kg specific absorption rate [SAR]) for one month and also investigated the possible impact of Egb761 using stereological, TUNEL-staining, and immunohistochemical methods. An increase in apoptotic proteins (Bax, Acas-3) and a decrease in anti-apoptotic protein (Bcl-2) immuno-reactivity along with a decrease in the total granule and pyramidal cell count were noted in the EMR group. A decrease in Bax and Acas-3 and an increase in Bcl-2 immunoreactivity were observed in rats treated with Egb761 in addition to a decrease in TUNEL-stained apoptotic cells and a higher total viable cell number. In conclusion, chronic cellphone EMR exposure may affect hippocampal cell viability, and Egb761 may be used to mitigate some of the deleterious effects. Histol Histopathol 33, 463-473 (2018)

Key words: Apoptosis, Cellphone EMR, Ginkgo biloba extract (Egb761), Hippocampus, Rat

DOI: 10.14670/HH-11-943