Nakasono, S. and Saiki, H. Effect of ELF Magnetic Fields on Protein Synthesis in Escherichia coli K12.
Escherichia coli K12 was used as a model system to determine whether ELF magnetic fields (MFs) are a general stress factor. The cells were exposed to ELF MFs (5–100 Hz) at a maximum intensity of 14 mT r.m.s. for circularly polarized MFs and 10 mT r.m.s. for vertically polarized MFs. The response of the cells to the MFs was estimated from the change in protein synthesis by using 2D PAGE. Approximately 1,000 proteins were separated on the 2D gels. The stress-responsive proteins such as CH10, DNAK, CH60, RECA, USPA, K6P1 and SODM were identified from the SWISS-2DPAGE database on the 2D gels. These proteins respond to most stress factors, including temperature change, chemical compounds, heavy metals, and nutrients. When the bacterial cells were exposed to each MF at 5–100 Hz under aerobic conditions (6.5 h) or at 50 Hz under anaerobic conditions (16 h) at the maximum intensity (7.8 to 14 mT r.m.s.), no reproducible changes were observed in the 2D gels. Changes in protein synthesis were detected by 2D PAGE with exposure to heat shock (50°C for 30 min) or under anaerobic conditions (no bubbling for 16 h). Increases in the levels of synthesis of the stress proteins were observed in heat-shocked cells (CH60, CH10, HTPG, DNAK, HSLV, IBPA and some unidentified proteins) and in cells grown under anaerobic conditions (DNAK, PFLB, RECA, USPA and many unidentified proteins). These results suggest that 2D PAGE is sufficient to detect cell responses to environmental stress. The high-intensity ELF MFs (14 mT at power frequency) did not act as a general stress factor.