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Improvement of Methods of exposure assessment for magnetic fields f rom electric traction with regard to coronary heart diseases


Foreseen Results

The completion of these tasks will provide a basis for the developing of recommendations on the preventive procedures to diminish the health-hazardous potential of magnetic fields from electric traction.

For the realization of this multidisciplinary Project the transborder collaboration of various experts (physicists, dosimetric and medical specialists, biologists and epidemiologists) will be established.
In recent years there was a broad consensus in the International Scientific Community that exposure to low-frequency magnetic fields can have biological effects in spite of the fact that the energy involved is quite small. Correspondingly there has also been increasing concern that these biological effects may result in health effects.

Recent results of participants to this Project on elevated risk of coronary heart diseases for Russian engine drivers associated with elevated magnetic field exposure provide a starting point for the Project. It is proposed to determine appropriate exposure metrics for monitoring magnetic fields from electric traction in work places and in general environment with regard to coronary heart diseases.

This aim will be achieved through the completion of the following tasks :

Development of extensive database of continuous MF records obtained by a special computer-based 3-component magnetometric system in different kind of DC powered electrified transportation systems in Russia and AC-powered in Switzerland.
Development of new methods of exposure assessment which will take into account specific features of transport-MFs : complex frequency spectra, peaks and transients;
Comparative analysis of magnetic field exposure evaluated by means of different exposure metrics in different kind of electrified transportation systems in Russia and Switzerland
Examination of the hypothesis whether MFs from electric traction constitute a CHD mortality risk in engine drivers population. The cohort data of the Swiss Federal Railway (18000 members) in the years 1972-1993 serves as a main body to answer this question. The comparison of results of this analysis with findings on Russian drivers along with results of (iii) will give an anchor for the identification of the appropriate exposure metrics
Developing of magnetic field patterns typical for Russian and Swiss electric transport. These patterns will be used for simulation of magnetic field exposure in biological studies in human and animals. The results of this study will provide an additional biological anchor for the determination of appropriate exposure metrics.

Funding Scheme

CSC - Cost-sharing contracts


Via Del Fosso Del Cavaliere 100
00133 Roma

Participants (6)

Institut Royal Météorologique de Belgique

5670 Dourbes
Institute of Human Brain - Russian Academy of Sciences
12,Pavlov Street
197376 St. Petersburg
Institute of Terrestrial Magnetism, Ionosphere and Radio-Wave Propagation -Russian Academy of Sciences
2,Muehnoy Street
191023 St. Petersburg
Simferopol University
4,Yaltinskaya Street
333036 Simferopol
11,Finkenhubelweg 11
3012 Bern
Universita' degli Studi di Roma Tre
Via Della Vasca Navale
00146 Roma