Radiofrequency Electromagnetic Field Exposure Amplifies the Detrimental Effects of Fetal Hyperglycemia in Zebrafish Embryos

Derya Cansiz*, Merih Beler, Gizem Egilmezer, Semanur Isikoglu, Zulal Mizrak, Ismail Unal, Selcuk Paker, Ahmet Ata Alturfan, Ebru Emekli-Alturfan

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Objective: Radiofrequency electromagnetic field (RF-EMF) exposure during the embryonic period can cause defects in the development of the fetus. The study's aim is to evaluate the effects of RF-EMF on the lipid accumulation, oxidant-antioxidant system parameters, locomotor activities, and gene expressions of insulin and leptin as genes related to insulin resistance in fetal hyperglycemia-induced zebrafish embryos. Materials and Methods: The study exposed zebrafish embryos to RF-EMF (60 min) and glucose (5%) every day until 96 hours post fertilization (hpf). The study measured lipid peroxidation (LPO), superoxide dismutase, nitric oxide (NO), glutathione S-transferase (GST), and glutathione (GSH) levels to observe the oxidative stress status. The study monitored the development of the zebrafish embryos under a microscope, performed a locomotor activity analysis, measured acetylcholinesterase activity, and conducted oil red O staining to determine lipid accumulation. The study used reverse transcription polymerase chain reactions (RT-PCRs) to determine the expressions of ins and lepa by using RT-PCR. Results: Both the glucose and RF-EMF applications decreased locomotor activity and increased the LPO and NO levels as oxidative damage indicators. Applying RF-EMF alone increased GST and GSH levels, while applying RF-EMF and glucose showed a decrease in the antioxidant defense systems. ins expression increased in the glucose and RF-EMF groups, while lepa expression increased in the glucose group and decreased in the RF-EMF group. Conclusion: The harmful effects of hyperglycemia and RF-EMF exposure during the fetal period on embryo development need to be supported by studies to confirm the changes the current study has identified at the gene and protein levels.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)77-84
Number of pages8
JournalEuropean Journal of Biology
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2024

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  • Fetal hyperglycemia
  • Insulin resistance
  • Radiofrequency electromagnetic field
  • Zebrafish embryos


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