[Histonet] Re: Microwave and DNA/Molecular
I think the jury is still out on that. Microwave radiation is
non-ionizing electromagnetic energy similar to radar and sound waves.
There have been some reports of state troopers getting tumors due to the
radar guns, or folks having tumors from using cell phones. I don't know
how good the science is behind it, but I'm thinking you'll find reports
which state they do cause damage, and others which state they don't.
If you're talking about what a microwave tissue processor would do to
your DNA in the sample, I believe the radiation would not harm it. The
molecules will vibrate in response to exposure to the microwaves and
that is what generates the heat. Keeping the temperature controlled
should keep the DNA from denaturing. High temperatures in the microwave,
as those achieved doing HIER techniques, will surely cause DNA strands
to separate. However, I suspect cooling should allow them to pair back
up. But for routine processing, the heat never gets that high.
I found information on this website
(http://www.gallawa.com/microtech/mwave.html) which doesn't directly
answer your question, but it does provide good information. Kok and Boon
also have a book on Microwave technology you can buy through Milestone
Teri Johnson, HT(ASCP)QIHC
Managing Director Histology Facility
Stowers Institute for Medical Research
1000 E. 50th St.
Kansas City, MO 64133
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