Effects of extremely low frequency electromagnetic fields on turkeys

Anna M. Laszlo, Marta Ladanyi, Krisztina Boda, Jozsef Csicsman, Ferenc Bari, Andrea Serester, Zsolt Molnar, Krisztian Sepp, Marta Galfi, Marianna Radacs

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1 Citation (Scopus)


Several studies have examined the potential biological effects of electromagnetic fields (EMF) on birds; however, little attention has been paid to the extremely low frequency (ELF; 0-300 Hz; 0-50 μT) radiation found in an urbanized environment. For monitoring the effects of ELF EMF, we used a Turkey (Meleagris gallopavo) model, because the nucleated erythrocytes of Turkeys contain β-Adrenoceptors, and norepinephrine-(NE-) activated β-Adrenoceptors have an important role in physiological and behavioral processes. Our aims were the following: 1) to investigate the intracellular mechanisms; 2) to compare the intracellular mechanisms in the treated and control groups over time, considering inter-individual differences and intra-subject correlations; 3) and to study the reversible nature of the response. The Turkeys in the treatment group were treated in vivo with ELF EMF (50 Hz; 10 μT) for 3 wk after a 1-wk-long adaptation period. The animals were not exposed to ELF EMF during the regeneration period (5 wk following the exposure). The NE-Activated β-Adrenoceptor function was detected by measuring the amount of 3.,5.,-cyclic-Adenosine-monophosphate (cAMP), and the biochemical enzyme parameters were defined. Repeated measurements of cAMP levels were analyzed using marginal models and a piecewise linear mixed model to compare treatment and control groups over time. According to our results, NE-Activated β-Adrenoceptor function was decreased in the treated birds in a time-dependent manner, while there were no differences between toxicological parameters in the serum, compared to the normal ranges. The decreased NE-dependent β-Adrenoceptor function could be compensated by the homeostatic complex during the 5-wk regeneration period. Extended experimental periods and more sophisticated analysis methods may help prevent harmful environmental effects on birds; furthermore, these findings could affect public health and the economy.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)634-642
Number of pages9
JournalPoultry science
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - Feb 1 2018



  • 3 5-cyclic-Adenosine-monophosphate
  • electromagnetic field exposure
  • piecewise linear mixed model
  • repeated measures analysis
  • β-Adrenoceptor indication in turkeys

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Animal Science and Zoology

Cite this

Laszlo, A. M., Ladanyi, M., Boda, K., Csicsman, J., Bari, F., Serester, A., Molnar, Z., Sepp, K., Galfi, M., & Radacs, M. (2018). Effects of extremely low frequency electromagnetic fields on turkeys. Poultry science, 97(2), 634-642. https://doi.org/10.3382/ps/pex304