Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Laptops, the Next Great Threat to Western Civilization

In a report in the venerable medical journal Fertility and Sterility, Argentinian scientists describe how they got semen samples from 29 healthy men, placed a few drops under a laptop connected to the Internet via Wi-Fi and then hit download.

Four hours later, the semen was, eh, well-done.

A quarter of the sperm were no longer swimming around, for instance, compared to just 14 percent from semen samples stored at the same temperature away from the computer.

And nine percent of the sperm showed DNA damage, three-fold more than the comparison samples.

The culprit? Electromagnetic radiation generated during wireless communication, say Conrado Avendano of Nascentis Medicina Reproductiva in Cordoba and colleagues.
 A 10% reduction in the number of swimming sperm, and a 6% increase in the amount of damaged sperm?  I doubt if laptops can be used as a decent form of birth control.  And, as the article points out:
he mused, "I don't know how many people use laptops on their laps anyway."

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