Far-infrared radiation (FIR) exerts numerous beneficial effects on health and cell physiology. Recent studies revealed that the biological effects of FIR are independent of thermal effects. There is no proper method for measuring the parameters of the non-thermal biological effects of FIR, which limits its biomedical application. In this study, we established a cell detection platform using epithelial cell migration to measure the limits of the biological effects of FIR. FIR promoted the migration of rat renal tubular epithelial cells as revealed by our standardized detection method. We defined the ratio of the FIR-promoted migration area to the migration area of the control group as the FIR biological index (FBI). An increase of the FBI was highly associated with FIR-promoted mitochondrial function. Through FBI detection, we revealed the limits of the biological effects of FIR, including effective irradiation time, wavelengths, and temperature. FBI detection can be used to clarify important parameters of the biological effects of FIR in biomedical studies and health industry applications.
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