A new facility for microwave irradiation of mice which will provide reproducible dosimetry is described. The waveguide used provided the integral dose rate to experimental animals under stable and controlled environmental conditions of relative humidity and temperature, variables which have been found to be critical in microwave studies. In terms of average absorbed lethal dose, the female mouse was found to be more sensitive to microwave irradiation during estrus than during diestrus. Teratogenesis (e.g., exencephalies) after sublethal irradiation of pregnant mice at 8 gestation days resulted from absorbed doses within the range of 3-8 calories per gram of body weight, and was never an all-or-none response. The incidence and variety of effects produced (hemmorrhage, resorption, stunting, and fetal death) indicate that the cause and effect relationships are neither linear nor well enough established and understood to permit prediction of the biological effects either in the mouse of other species. As the absorbed dose of radiant energy is increased to the 8-day pregnant mouse, the probability of it producing at least one exencephaly is likewise increased. Nevertheless, the determination of the absorbed dose of microwave energy in each mouse is one step closer to determining the precise absorbed-dose-effect relationship for microwave exposures. A total of 1096 mice were exposed to microwave radiation and separately monitored to gather the related data.

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