Cell phone radiation linked to cancer

Cellphone Radiation Causes Cancer in Rats, Government Study Finds

It adds heft to the hypothesis that there is a link between mobile phone use and cancer. The conclusion comes from a final report on research evaluating the effect of radio frequency radiation, which is used in cell phones. The studies also found evidence that the radiation was linked to tumors in male rats' brains and adrenal glands.

Now, it says it will echo the NTP's previous advice to the public, back in February when the preliminary results were revealed.

"After reviewing the [NTP] study, we disagree, however, with the conclusions of their final report regarding "clear evidence" of carcinogenic activity in rodents exposed to radiofrequency energy", he said in an agency statement.

But the FDA has already taken issue with the findings.

And, "the exposures used in the studies can not be compared directly to the exposure that humans experience when using a cellphone", NTP senior scientist John Bucher noted in an NIEHS news release.

The rats were exposed to radiation at a frequency of 900 megahertz, the frequency used in the second generation of mobile phones that prevailed in the 90s when the study was first conceived.

What's more, the rodents were exposed to cellphone radiation - known as radio-frequency radiation - at greater levels, and for much longer periods, than what people experience, the researchers said.

And since 1999, it has been a concern to the National Institutes of Health (NIH), too, prompting the agency to dedicate $30 million to the NTP to study the link.

To see if radiation itself - not heat from cell phones - could cause cancer, they exposed male and female rats and mice to full-body RFR at levels far higher than we experience from our phones. There were no such significant findings in the female rats.

But the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) insists that the danger does not apply to humans. The findings are unlikely to satisfy many people.

These studies did not investigate the types of RFR used for Wi-Fi or 5G networks. Most phones still contain antennas that can pick up these frequencies, but rely more heavily on newer generation technology like 4G LTE and 5G, which is being rolled out across the US. "From what we now understand, it likely differs dramatically from what we studied", said Michael Wyde, lead toxicologist on the studies.

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The lowest exposure level used for the study was equal to the maximum local tissue exposure now allowed for cellphone users, the report states. The researchers tracked the health of the animals from in utero to 2 years of age.

"It's important to consider the magnitude of the exposures to the animals in these studies in relation to what one might typically receive from using a cell phone", Bucher said.

The highest exposure level in the studies was four times higher than the maximum power level permitted. This may be because the male rats exposed to radiation were less likely to develop chronic kidney problems, which are a common cause of death among older rats, the researchers said.

But the results of the study do need proper context.

A major study is hoping to answer some of those questions. We believe the existing safety limits for cell phones remain acceptable for protecting the public health'.

"When new studies or information becomes available, the FDA conducts thorough evaluations of the data to continually inform our thinking", said Dr. Jeffrey Shuren, director of the FDA's Center for Devices and Radiological Health.

As such, the NTP is planning more studies that would take months instead of years in hopes of identifying the biomarkers of damage from RFR exposure.

CNN's parent company, WarnerMedia, is owned by communications company AT&T. This power level rarely occurs with typical cellphone use.

The American Cancer Society, which tracks the incidence of cancer, has noted that there has not been a noticeable increase in cancer types that might be associated with cellphone use.

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