Medical Radiology and Radiation Safety. 2021. Vol. 66. № 5. P. 5–10 

Influence of Powerful Non-Ionizing Terahertz Radiation 

on Healthy and Tumor Human Cells of Neural Origin

R.O. Shatalova1, S.A. Gurova1, V.A. Revkova2, I.V. Ilina3, D.S. Sitnikov3 

1National Research Nuclear University, MEPhi Obninsk Institute for Nuclear Power Engineering, Obninsk, Russia

2Federal Research and Clinical Center of Specialized Medical Care and Medical Technologies, Moscow, Russia

3Joint Institute for High Temperatures, Moscow, Russia

Contact person: Dmitry Sergeevich Sitnikov: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.  


Purpose: Study of the influence of high-power pulses of coherent non-ionizing terahertz (THz) radiation on the formation of foci of double-strand DNA breaks and the proliferative activity of human neuronal cells.

Material and methods: Irradiated cell cultures are direct reprogramming neural progenitor cells (drNPCs), neuroblastoma cells (SK-N-BE). Cells are irradiated with a sequence of THz radiation pulses with a peak intensity of ~ 20 GW/cm2 and electric field strength of 2.8 MV/cm. Irradiation lasts 30 mins.

Results: There is no statistically significant difference in the number of γH2AX histone foci between experimental and control cell groups.

Conclusion: It was shown that a short exposure (30 min) of cells to THz radiation with intensity of 20 GW/cm2 does not affect the proliferative activity of both neural progenitor cells and neuroblastoma cells and does not cause a significant increase in γH2AX foci in any of the studied cell lines. 

Key words: non-ionizing radiation, terahertz radiation, H2AX histone foci, proliferative activity, neural stem cells, SK-N-BE neuroblastoma

For citation: Shatalova RO, Gurova SA, Revkova VA, Ilina IV, Sitnikov DS. Influence of Powerful Non-Ionizing Terahertz Radiation on Healthy and Tumor Human Cells of Neural Origin. Medical Radiology and Radiation Safety. 2021;66(5):5–10.

 DOI: 10.12737/1024-6177-2021-66-5-5-10


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Conflict of interest. The authors declare no conflict of interest.

Financing. The studies were carried out using the UNU "Laser terawatt femtosecond complex", which is part of the Center for Collective Use "Laser femtosecond complex" of the Joint Institute for High Temperatures of the Russian Academy of Sciences with the financial support of the Russian Foundation for Basic Research within the framework of scientific project No. 19-02-00762.

Contribution. Development of the research concept and assembly of the experimental scheme - D. Sitnikov;

development of research design, work with cell culture, study of THz exposure - Revkova VA;

conducting experiments on irradiation of cells - Sitnikov D.S., Ilyina I.V., Gurova S.A., Shatalova R.O.,

statistical data processing - Gurova S.A., Shatalova R.O.,

writing and scientific editing of text - all authors.

Article received: 16.03.2021. 

Accepted for publication: 21.04.2021.