DNA synthesis in cartilage cells is stimulated by oscillating electric fields

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Science  10 Feb 1978:
Vol. 199, Issue 4329, pp. 690-692
DOI: 10.1126/science.625660


External oscillating electric fields (1166 volts per centimeter, 5 hertz) enhanced the incorporation of [3H] thymidine into the DNA of chondrocytes isolated from the proliferative layer of embryonic (16 days) chick epiphysis. Verapamil or tetrodotoxin at 10(-6)M concentrations completely blocked the electric field effect. Tetracaine reduced the incorporation of [3H] thymidine in both control and electrically stimulated cells. The findings support the hypothesis that Na and Ca2 fluxes generated by the electrical perturbation trigger DNA synthesis in these cells.