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Evaluation of Pulsed Electromagnetic Field Effects

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BioMed Research International
Volume 2021, Article ID 6647497, 22 pages
Review Article
Evaluation of Pulsed Electromagnetic Field Effects: A Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis on Highlights of Two Decades of Research In Vitro Studies
Mahsa Mansourian 1 and Ahmad Shanei 2
1Department of Medical Physics, Faculty of Medicine, Isfahan University of Medical Science, Isfahan, Hezar Jerib Avenue, Isfahan, Iran
2Department of Medical Physics, Faculty of Medical Science, Isfahan University of Medical Science, Isfahan, Hezar Jerib Street, Isfahan, Iran
Correspondence should be addressed to Mahsa Mansourian;
Received 4 October 2020; Revised 30 May 2021; Accepted 27 June 2021; Published 29 July 2021
Academic Editor: Luis Loura
Copyright © 2021 Mahsa Mansourian and Ahmad Shanei. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.
Pulsed electromagnetic field (PEMF) therapy is a type of physical stimulation that affects biological systems by producing interfering or coherent fields. Given that cell types are significantly distinct, which represents an important factor in stimulation, and that PEMFs can have different effects in terms of frequency and intensity, time of exposure, and waveform. This study is aimed at investigating if distinct positive and negative responses would correspond to specific characteristics of cells, frequency and flux density, time of exposure, and waveform. Necessary data were abstracted from the experimental observations of cell- based in vitro models. The observations were obtained from 92 publications between the years 1999 and 2019, which are available on PubMed and Web of Science databases. From each of the included studies, type of cells, pulse frequency of exposure, exposure flux density, and assayed cell responses were extracted. According to the obtained data, most of the experiments were carried out on human cells, and out of 2421 human cell experiments, cell changes were observed only in 51.05% of the data. In addition, the results pointed out the potential effects of PEMFs on some human cell types such as MG-63 human osteosarcoma cells (p value < 0.001) and bone marrow mesenchymal stem cells. However, human osteogenic sarcoma SaOS-2 (p<0:001) and human adipose-derived mesenchymal stem cells (AD-MSCs) showed less sensitivity to PEMFs. Nevertheless, the evidence suggests that frequencies higher than 100Hz, flux densities between 1 and 10mT, and chronic exposure more than 10 days would be more effective in establishing a cellular response. This study successfully reported useful information about the role of cell type and signal characteristic parameters, which were of high importance for targeted therapies using PEMFs. Our findings would provide a deeper understanding about the effect of PEMFs in vitro, which could be useful as a reference for many in vivo experiments or preclinical trials.
1. Introduction
Electromagnetic fields (EMFs) are composed of magnetic and electric fields that influence each other [1]. There are many EMF subtypes with varying frequency rates, and they can cause either positive or detrimental biological effects. For medical purposes, they can be used in diagnostic modal- ity and be considered as a potential therapeutic option as well. On the other hand, EMFs can penetrate tissues without
experiencing intensity decrement [2], pass through the cell membrane, and affect cell responses. Consequently, cells may experience diverse pathophysiological disorders like cancer, thus, elevating one’s concern during the course of using EMFs for therapeutic purposes [3]. However, despite many findings, the carcinogenic role of EMF is still unclear.
Among subtypes of EMFs, low-frequency fields with spe- cific amplitudes and waveforms are referred to as pulsed EMFs (PEMFs) [4]. Being a promising strategy and a type

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