The Use of Pulsed Electromagnetic Field to Modulate
Inflammation and Improve Tissue Regeneration

Christina L. Ross, PhD,1 Yu Zhou, PhD,2 Charles E. McCall, MD,3
Shay Soker, PhD,2 and Tracy L. Criswell, PhD2

Pulsed electromagnetic field (PEMF) is emerging as innovative treatment for regulation of inflammation, which could have significant effects on tissue regeneration. PEMF modulates inflammatory processes through the regulation of pro- and anti-inflammatory cytokine secretion during different stages of inflammatory response. Consistent outcomes in studies involving animal and human tissue have shown promise for the use of PEMF as an alternative or complementary treatment to pharmaceutical therapies. Thus, PEMF treatment could provide a novel nonpharmaceutical means of modulating inflammation in injured tissues resulting in enhanced functional recovery. 

This review examines the effect of PEMF on immunomodulatory cells (e.g., mesenchymal stem/ stromal cells [MSCs] and macrophages [MF]) to better understand the potential for PEMF therapy to modulate inflammatory signaling pathways and improve tissue regeneration. This review cites published data that support the use of PEMF to improve tissue regeneration. Our studies included herein confirm anti-inflammatory effects of PEMF on MSCs and MF. 

Keywords: pulsed electromagnetic field (PEMF), inflammation, regeneration, mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs),  macrophages (THP-1s), muscle cells (C2C12).

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