- freely available
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2010, 7(3), 938-965; doi:10.3390/ijerph7030938
- virus evolution dynamics;
- host’s sensitivity;
- conditions for viral transmission, etc.
- To bring attention to periodicity as a common feature of numerous biological processes and to discuss the nature of corresponding regulatory influences;
- To show theoretical possibility of bio-regulatory effects of magnetic fields;
- To outline some signaling pathways capable of implementing bio-regulatory (including genome-regulatory) functions of electromagnetic fields;
- To summarize our knowledge about Geomagnetic field, its principle parameters and sources of variation;
- To review possible evidences of regulatory influence of Solar cycles and corresponding Geomagnetic field perturbations on flu epidemic process;
- To describe probable mechanisms of Solar cycles and Geomagnetic field regulatory influences on virus-host interactions and other biological processes.
2. Periodicity as a Common Feature of Numerous Biological Processes and Nature of Corresponding Regulatory Influences
- - pacemaker;
- - regulatory signals emitted by pacemaker;
- - receptors of the regulatory signals in the controlled constituent.
- - in most evident cases it is solar light, which represent electromagnetic waves of definite wavelength, and has numerous biological effects, including regulation of circadian rhythms in living beings.
- - in the case of cycles of Solar activity it is alterations of the Earth’s Magnetic field, caused by fluctuations in levels of solar ionizing radiations and solar energy output (Figure 1).
- - it is also worthy to mention a slowly-varying Microwave emission from the solar corona.
3. Theoretical Possibility and Evidences of Bio-Regulatory Effects of Weak Magnetic Fields
- - electrical fields are able to interact with charged molecules, surfaces and electric dipoles of biomolecules, and
- - magnetic fields can interact with magnetic dipoles of electron spins, whose carriers are paramagnetic molecules, metal ions and ion-radicals .
- Mechanisms following the “plasma membrane hypothesis”, which proposes that the cell membrane is a primary biological receiver of magnetic signals, in that it responds to magnetic field influences by changes of its potential, and modulates the distribution and activity of integral membrane proteins and ion channels (e.g., Ca2+ channels). However, the primary molecular interaction remains unclear.
- Free radical mechanisms. The basis of these mechanisms is the phenomenon that magnetic fields can increase the lifetime of free radicals, i.e., stabilize them for longer. This results in an increase in free radical concentration in cell compartments, and hence biological changes including activation of signaling cascades (reviewed in ).
3.1. Radical Pairs and Pair Radical Reactions
3.2. Key Features of a Radical Pair Magnetoreceptor
4. Signaling Pathways Capable of Implementing Bio-Regulatory (Including Genome-Regulatory) Functions of Magnetic Fields
4.1. Cryptochromes: Ancient Regulatory Proteins Sensitive to Electromagnetic Radiation and Magnetic Fields
4.2. Cryptochrome-Mediated Pathways and Biological Effects
4.3. Ca2+-Operated Pathways and Ion Resonance Effects
5. Brief Summary of Our Knowledge about Geomagnetic Field, its Principle Parameters and Sources of Variation
6. Possible Evidence of Regulatory Influence of Solar Cycles and Corresponding Geomagnetic Field Perturbations on Flu Epidemic Process
- Occurrence of major influenza epidemics shows definite periodicity with an average period of 11, 3 years, equal to the period of Solar activity fluctuations;
- As a rule, significant influenza epidemics do not occur in years of minimum solar activity;
- Most major influenza epidemics occurred in time interval starting 2–3 years before and ending 2–3 years after solar activity maxima.
7. Probable Mechanisms of the Geomagnetic Field and Solar Cycles Influences on Biological Functions and Virus-Host Interactions
- - decrease influenza virus production in infected cells and viral gene expression;
- - block early stages of the influenza virus life cycle;
- - specifically decrease the vRNA level during influenza virus infection .
- Perturbations of cosmic plasma flow (such called star or solar “wind”) caused by Solar activity alterations induce periodic changes in the geomagnetic field that is among immediate regulatory signals for Solar-correlated cycles in Biosphere, including cyclic modulation in gene expression patterns of living beings. This solar activity-dependent regulation of gene expression can clearly lead to immunological, epidemiological and other consequences.
- Among the universal biological “antennae” of the magnetic regulatory signals, it is important to include proteins of the Cryptochrome family and Ca2+ signaling pathways. Cryptochromes can function as “epigenetic sensors” of the geomagnetic field fluctuations, the magnetic field-sensitive part of the epigenetic regulatory mechanism.
- The radical pair mechanism of magnetoreception (effects related to spin chemistry) can account for high magnetic responsiveness of Cryptochromes, which incorporates the radical pairs in their functionally active sites.
- CRY are transcriptional repressors of the major circadian complex CLOCK/BMAL1, therefore magnetic fields via modulation of CRY function can influence circadian gene expression, modify activity of NF-κB- and glucocorticoids-dependent signaling pathways.
- The pattern of stress-induced gene expression and organismal response to stress will vary depending on the functional activity of Cryptochromes, which in turn may be regulated by magnetic fields and, correspondingly—by solar activity cycles.
- We hypothesize that solar cycles are able to both regulate, entrain processes of biological microevolution and to tune biological rhythms (bio-clocks) in living beings implementing mechanisms stated above.
extremely low frequency EMF
CREB binding protein
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