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Strong static magnetic fields in the Tesla range have a diamagnetic force on cell components. Within an exposure period of 3 d, such magnetic fields generate a clear alignment of the smooth muscle cell assembly, which is parallel to the direction of the fields. In the present study, behavioral changes in intracellular components were suggested by changes in optical transmission under the influence of magnetic fields of 8 T. The magnetically oriented cells were exposed both in parallel and perpendicularly to the 8 T magnetic fields, and the time course of the polarized light transmission at 500 nm was measured in real time. The perpendicularly exposed cells had a presteady state, which was slow to increase. However, the total change in the intensity of the polarized light was larger than that of the cells exposed in parallel. We observed that no distinct changes in cell morphology including cell membrane components occurred during the 3 h of exposure to the magnetic fields. Based on the results, we concluded that intracellular component motion had a major influence on polarized light transmission under 8 T magnetic fields. We speculated that unconstrained intracellular macromolecules, such as actin fibers and microtubules, rotated due to diamagnetic torque forces during the 3 h of exposure to 8 T magnetic fields. © 2003 American Institute of Physics.