Background: Previous studies shown that mobile phone can impairment of working memory in humans.
Objective: In this study, the effect of radiofrequency radiation emitted from common mobile jammers have been studied on the learning and memory of rats.
Material and Methods: In this prospective study, 90 Sprague-Dawley rats, were divided into 9 groups(N=10): Control, Sham1st (exposed to a switched-off mobile jammer device at a distance of 50 or 100 cm/1day, 2 hours), Sham2nd (similar to Sham1st , but for 14days, 2h/day), Experimental1st -50cm/1day &100cm/1day(exposed to a switched-on device at a distance of 50 or 100cm for 2 hours), Experimental2nd (similar to experimental1st, but for 14 days, 2 h/day). The animals were tested for learning and memory the next day, by the shuttle box. The time that a rat took to enter the dark part was considered as memory.
Results: Mean short-term memory was shorter in the experimental-50cm/1day than control and sham-50cm/1day (P=0.034), long-term memory was similar. Mean short- and long-term memory were similar in the experimental-100cm/1day, control and sham-100cm/1day (P>0.05). Mean short-term memory was similar in experimental-50cm/14days, control, and sham-50cm/14days (P=0.087), but long-term learning memory was shorter in the radiated group (P=0.038). Mean short- and long-term were similar among experimental-100cm/14days, control or sham 100cm/14days (P>0.05).
Conclusion: Rats exposed to jammer device showed dysfunction in short- and long-term memory, which shown the unfavorable effect of jammer on memory and learning. Our results indicated that the distance from radiation source was more important than the duration.