17 votes

Why does UV radiation from the Sun cause skin cancer?

Rather than 'breaks' caused by high energy radiation, UV radiation causes chemical modifications of the bases ('letters') that make up DNA. There are four bases in the DNA alphabet abbreviated to A,T,...
mimat's user avatar
  • 1,425
15 votes
Accepted

Can DNA be considered as a fractal antenna?

I looked at the original paper, Blank and Goodman "DNA is a fractal antenna in electromagnetic fields" Int J Radiation Biology, 87:4, 409-415, DOI:10.3109/09553002.2011.538130. To be honest I can't ...
Ben Bolker's user avatar
  • 5,344
15 votes

Why does UV radiation from the Sun cause skin cancer?

There are very many photochemical reactions: Up to 50–100 mutagenic reactions on DNA per second might occur in a skin cell during exposure to sunlight, but are usually corrected within seconds by ...
bandybabboon's user avatar
  • 10.4k
9 votes
Accepted

A study has found that cell phones cause infertility, is this something to worry about or is the study flawed?

The study is basically worthless. First, the study was not constructed to test this hypothesis, so it's just something interesting that may point to future studies. It does not provide sufficient ...
John's user avatar
  • 14.6k
9 votes
Accepted

How do electrons destroy DNA bonds in radiation?

I think you have a fundamental misunderstanding of the chemical reactions involved in radiation therapy. Neither photon based or proton based therapies "create electrons", but they do cause ionization ...
user137's user avatar
  • 5,328
9 votes

How lethal is high dose UV?

The answer is easier than you think. Have you ever had a sunburn so bad that it causes blisters? (I have, as a teen falling asleep on the beach.) Those sunburns are called second degree sunburns. With ...
anongoodnurse's user avatar
8 votes

Can any organisms see non-electromagnetic radiation?

Some fungi have radiotropism; they grow toward radiation sources. Melanin-expressing (melanotic) fungi migrate toward radioactive sources, which enhance their growth. According to this paper. These ...
BPinto's user avatar
  • 478
8 votes
Accepted

Why did they expect Astronaut Scott Kelley's telomere shortening to accelerate? (they got longer!)

Dr. Bailey wrote a short piece that hints at the reasons behind why she expected what she expected: Telomeres are the ends of chromosomes that protect them from damage and from “fraying” – much like ...
Alex Reynolds's user avatar
7 votes

Why does ionizing radiation cause only DNA double strand breaks?

Ionizing radiation does cause single-strand breaks and other kinds of DNA lesions that are not double-strand breaks. However, double-strand breaks are the most difficult to repair and are thus the ...
acvill's user avatar
  • 8,286
5 votes
Accepted

Why does UVA penetrate deeper than UVB, though it's weaker?

Our skin contains quite a lot of water and I think this is answers the question: The absorption of UV light by this water goes drastically up when you shift to shorter wavelengts with a minimum ...
Chris's user avatar
  • 51.6k
5 votes

A cure for radiation exposure?

Would that be a good thing? Recent research from the Samson lab at MIT suggests that there are side effects from amplifying the DNA repair mechanism. Hyperactivity of a base-excision repair (BER) ...
Alex Reynolds's user avatar
4 votes
Accepted

Are microwaves harmful to us?

$2.45~\rm GHz$ is well into the microwave region, which is usually defined as radio waves with a frequency of greater than $1~\rm GHz$. Microwaves can be harmful. If you stood in front of a $1~\rm MW$...
Chris's user avatar
  • 156
4 votes
Accepted

Why does our visible range not include infrared or UV radiation?

Usually we don't ask why in biology because the explanation is always the same, it was good enough for survival. But here are a couple of explanations. The radiation peak from the sun is in the ...
Hachiloni's user avatar
  • 963
4 votes

If microwave radiation is dangerous for rats why is not for human?

The full report is a PDF available here1 and as a webpage at the NCBI. It is quite technical. Much of it is written in fairly plain English, but should be read with an understanding of the scientific ...
bob1's user avatar
  • 11.5k
3 votes

Which frequency of UV light damages DNA?

Not only pure DNA, UV radiations are one of the main causes of skin cancer because they damage cellular DNA in skin cells. Talking about frequency range, two different types of UV radiations damage ...
another 'Homo sapien''s user avatar
3 votes

Does a microwave oven disinfect food?

Keep in mind that microwaves kill organisms via heat, and in particular, heating mainly water. This is contrast to ionizing radiation, for example as obtained from the cobalt used in commercial food ...
Kvothe's user avatar
  • 66
2 votes
Accepted

What is the closest possible analogue to human cells?

What about Escherichia coli? Every undergraduate lab has easy access to plenty of E.coli culture methods and its stupid easy to culture. There are always HeLa cells as well if you really want the ...
RyFa's user avatar
  • 56
2 votes

Does cell phone radiation promote longevity?

"I'm curious to know why more people haven't commented on this result in news outlets" Because for once the news outlets appear to be behaving responsibly, and waiting until the results are ...
David's user avatar
  • 24.9k
2 votes

Does cell phone radiation promote longevity?

If you read the discussion, and also the full contents of the PDF which include some reviewer comments, there is concern about the control group: The survival of the control group of male rats in ...
Bryan Krause's user avatar
  • 45.3k
2 votes
Accepted

Could there be any effects from low powered infrared being used to track eye movements long term?

I would have said that IR is safe, but some studies have suggested otherwise. This is a vague study on rabbit eyes: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3116568/ https://academic.oup.com/...
bandybabboon's user avatar
  • 10.4k
2 votes
Accepted

Is it better to receive a certain dose of radition gradually or all at once?

The period of time over which a dosage is given matters critically. You probably have experienced this in your daily life. If you are out in the bright, summer, sun for 8 consecutive hours on a single ...
Charles E. Grant's user avatar
2 votes
Accepted

Could a strong magnet field repel the body before damaging it?

A strong magnet can repel a body, but the effect is due to small diamagnetism of every atom. You can see a picture of a levitating frog and a video here. And a very good explanation and more videos ...
BPinto's user avatar
  • 478
2 votes

Could a strong magnet field repel the body before damaging it?

While mammalian blood is characterized by diamagnetism (as demonstrated here), as far as I know, the human body as a whole is more or less electrically neutral—that is, with all of its summed ...
Roman Goff's user avatar
2 votes

Can bacteria, viruses, and cancer cells be destroyed by resonance?

Your question included "other forms of waves" so I'm going to assume that the use of ultrasound to destroy cancer cells qualifies. A paper published in the British Journal of Cancer in 2009: "[High-...
Esteve's user avatar
  • 21
2 votes

Why does UV radiation from the Sun cause skin cancer?

Physics/Chemistry aside, as @mimat and @aliential awesomely explained, it's always good to keep in mind that cancer, in general, is a statistics game, in the sense that at any time, there's a cell ...
As Aves's user avatar
  • 21
1 vote
Accepted

Is there a negative correlation between the mRNA produced by the cell and the time of extraction?

$\gamma$-irradiation produces single- and double-strand DNA breaks, depending on the dosage, and activates DNA damage repair pathways like p53. During this time, the cell cycle arrests and most if not ...
MattDMo's user avatar
  • 15.3k
1 vote

What caused the Mesozoic-Cenozoic radiation?

There is no real start to a radiation event. First there are many mass extinctions and many radiation events, what you are referring to are just the most notable ones. also the big five do not occur ...
John's user avatar
  • 14.6k
1 vote

Why are fertilizers with polonium 210 used when growing tobacco?

According to RADIOACTIVITY IN CHEMICAL FERTILIZERS by Milica M. Rajačić, Nataša B. Sarap, Marija M. Janković, Jelena D. Nikolić, Dragana J. Todorović and Gordana K. Pantelić at the Institute for ...
Cees Timmerman's user avatar
1 vote

How come our thyroid glands don't suffer awful mutations (or do they)?

Radioactive does not mean much in and of itself, your bones are radioactive (potassium), just being radioactive is not enough to do any damage. It needs to be the right type of radiation and have ...
John's user avatar
  • 14.6k
1 vote

Is there a taxon that "adaptively" radiates faster?

The species from your list have some common traits: Fast metabolism of themselves, food and fertilizers sexual reproduction is more complex than crabs and coral complex ecosystems and fast changing ...
bandybabboon's user avatar
  • 10.4k

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