2016 EBEA/COST Erice school on Electromagnetic Fields and the Nervous System: Biological Effects, Biophysical Mechanisms, Methods, and Medical Applications

Apr 11, 2016

Published on: Mar 03, 2016

Please find the Final Program for download as pdf from the link at the bottom of the page

Ettore Majorana Foundation and Centre for Scientific Culture
(President: prof. Antonino Zichichi)

EBEA logo

International School of Bioelectromagnetics “Alessandro Chiabrera” 
Director of the School: prof. Ferdinando Bersani (University of Bologna, Italy)

Sponsored by: European Bioelectromagnetic Association (EBEA); Italian Inter-University Centre for the study of the Interaction between Electromagnetic Fields and Biosystems (ICEmB); IGEA Clinical Biophysics (Carpi, Italy); World Health Organization (WHO).


The Centre for Scientific Culture in Erice (Sicily, Italy) is named after the great Italian scientist Ettore Majorana. Antonino Zichichi, the President of the Centre, has said: “At Erice, those who come in order to follow a certain School are called ‘students’, but actually they are young people who have successfully completed their University studies and who come to Erice in order to learn what the new problems are. However, what is distinctive for Erice is the spirit animating all participants: students no less than teachers. The prime objective is to learn. The student listens to the lectures and after that comes the most amusing part: the discussion session.”

Topics in Bioelectromagnetics have come to Erice many times in the past, especially in the 1980s, with international courses and workshops on non-ionising radiations, and today many participants of those courses contribute greatly to the development of this research field. 

Following the request of the European Bioelectromagnetics Association (EBEA) and the Italian Inter-University Centre for the study of the Interaction between Electromagnetic Fields and Biosystems (ICEmB), in 2003 the Ettore Majorana Centre has established a Permanent School of Bioelectromagnetics, named after Alessandro Chiabrera, who is considered as a Master by the young scientists of the two organizations.


COST logo

VIIICOURSE, organized with COST Action BM1309:
European network for innovative uses of EMFs in biomedical applications (COST EMF-MED)


Electromagnetic Fields and the Nervous System:
Biological Effects, Biophysical Mechanisms, Methods, and Medical Applications

Directors of the Course:

Vincenzo Di Lazzaro
Chair of Neurology
Campus Bio-Medico University,Via Alvaro del Portillo, 200, 00128 Rome,Italy

Bernard Veyret
IMS laboratory, University of Bordeaux, CNRS, 33405 Talence, France

Erice, Sicily (Italy), 11-16 April, 2016

The nervous system is likely one of the major targets for EMF effects, due to its electrical activity and its role in the body response to external stimuli. In the last decades, several investigations have been focused on the effects of ELF or RF fields at cellular, tissue or whole-body levels, both in animals and humans. The research emphasis on the nervous system greatly increased following the introduction of mobile telephones, due to the vicinity of the electromagnetic source to the brain during conversation. In addition to the open question about the health risk related to field exposure, a number of medical applications have been proposed or developed, including nerve regeneration, cancer therapy, analgesia, treatments for depression, traumatic brain injury, multiple sclerosis, Alzheimer’s and other neurodegenerative diseases, etc. Despite all these studies and the interesting future perspectives concerning medical applications, the mechanisms underlying the effects of EMF on the nervous system, with the exception of thermal effects, are still unclear, and much work remains to be done. Recent progress in EMF therapeutics in the nervous system has led to regulatory approval for several devices. However, it must be stressed that there is also a grey landscape, consisting of many therapeutic devices currently present on the market, although lacking scientific support and adequate clinical evidence. These devices are often publicized by paramedical centres and used by medical doctors, mostly in the context of the so-called alternative medicine. In this context, it is particularly important to distinguish the wheat from the chaff, in order to clarify the situation and to identify the gaps in our present knowledge, future perspectives and research needs.

The Course is intended to give a general overview of this topic, including biological effects, biophysical mechanisms, present medical applications and future perspectives. Particular attention will be paid to the methodology in this specific field of research.

COST (European Cooperation in Science and Technology) is a pan-European intergovernmental framework. Its mission is to enable break-through scientific and technological developments leading to new concepts and products and thereby contribute to strengthening Europe’s research and innovation capacities. www.cost.eu

COST logoCOST is supported by the EU Framework Programme Horizon 2020


Download Final Program

Participation fee: 1300 € including food and lodging.

Application: interested Candidates should send an E-mail to the Directors of the Course at the following address: school@ebea.org with the following information:

  • a short Curriculum Vitae;
  • scientific interests of the Candidate;
  • for young Researchers: a letter of recommendation of a Senior Scientist (attached Word or PDF file).

In case of acceptance, the Candidate will be informed by E-mail, and will receive detailed information about the Course.

Deadline for application: March 31, 2016


File attachments

Erice2016finalprogram.pdf 381804 [bytes]