Interaction of Non-Ionizing Millimeter Wave and Yeast Cells: An Approach for Biomedical Devices

  Shailendra Rajput [1]  ,  Ayan Barbora [2,3]  ,  Konstantin Komoshvili [2]  ,  Stella Aronov [3]  ,  Jacob Levitan [2]  ,  Asher Yahalom [1]  
[1] Department of Electrical & Electronic Engineering, Ariel University, Israel 40700
[2] Department of Physics, Ariel University, Israel 40700
[3] Department of Molecular Biology, Ariel University, Israel 40700

The influence of millimeter wave (MMW) radiation on biological systems has gained prominence in recent years because of two important reasons: 1) to establish safety standards for the use of MMWs in communication devices, 2) to understand the mechanisms of interaction between MMW and living systems. Our experiments demonstrated that non-ionizing MMW (75-105 GHz) exposure with a non-thermal power density (0.2 mW/cm2) could elicit morphological changes in H1299 human lung cancer cells [1]. This phenomenon leads to targeted apoptosis and mortality [2] without harming normal cells under the same exposure conditions. MMWs are also reported to help detect different types of cancers [3]. Further, such technologies involving have shown promising applications in treating other diseases like gastrointestinal disorders, wound healing, remote monitoring of wounds, non-invasive detection of glucose levels, pain relief, diabetes, dermatitis, etc. However, the exact mechanism of the therapeutic effects is not well understood and hinders the wide-scale application of this technology.

Here, we study the growth mechanism of MMWs exposed Saccharomyces Cerevisiae yeast cells. Cells were grown overnight at 30°C in a standard synthetic complete (SC) liquid medium for 16 hours. The yeast cells were spotted/dappled on the Agar medium and subsequently irradiated from the top. The grown cells were exposed to specific frequencies of 75-105 GHz with an amplitude of 5 dBm for 6 hours. It is observed that the MMW exposure resulted in a 62% reduction in the growth rate of yeast cells at a density of 50 cells/μl. A comparative analysis of changes in the growth profile of irradiated wild type and Δrad52 (DNA damage repair) deletion cells revealed no directed detrimental effects on genomic stability. Further, the observations suggest MMW radiation can elicit targeted biochemical responses for therapeutic applications via physical perturbations of biological membranes.


  1. Komoshvili, K.; Becker, T.; Levitan, J.; Yahalom, A.; Barbora, A.; Liberman-Aronov, S. Morphological Changes in H1299 Human Lung Cancer Cells Following W-Band Millimeter-Wave Irradiation. Applied Sciences 2020, 10 (9), 3187.
  2. Komoshvili, K.; Israel, K.; Levitan, J.; Yahalom, A.; Barbora, A.; Liberman-Aronov, S. W-Band Millimeter Waves Targeted Mortality of H1299 Human Lung Cancer Cells without Affecting Non-Tumorigenic MCF-10A Human Epithelial Cells In Vitro. Applied Sciences 2020, 10 (14), 4813.
  3. Mirbeik-Sabzevari, A.; Tavassolian, N. Ultrawideband, Stable Normal and Cancer Skin Tissue Phantoms for Millimeter-Wave Skin Cancer Imaging. IEEE Transactions on Biomedical Engineering 2019, 66 (1), 176–186.