2 comments to “Long-Running Government Study Finds Cellphone Radiation Causes Cancer in Rats”

  1. Marne Glaser

    One problem with the item on the NTP cell phone cancer study is that it does not reference the results of the Ramazzini Institute study, which were announced shortly after the peer-reviewed results from NTP in March. This major animal study from Italy on cell tower radiation effects involved rats exposed to far-lower intensities than the NTP studies, and well within the everyday cell phone intensity range. The results showed similar cancers, tumors and DNA breakage as were found in NTP. This is an important piece of news to include. https://microwavenews.com/news-center/more-coincidence

    I have several bones to pick with Mr. Shuren’s very traditionally FDA statement. Number one, the FDA was responsible for pre-market testing of cell phones way back when, and traded that responsibility to pre-test and regulate cell phones in exchange for the industry’s promise to do a $28 million health research program, dubbed Wireless Technology Research, headed by industry-friendly George Carlo. What they didn’t anticipate was that some of the research would show DNA breakage and tumors. When it did, they ended the research program, and never advised the public. FDA’s appeared to be in industry’s pocket ever since.

    In his comments, Mr. Shuren stated: “In fact, we only begin to observe effects to animal tissue at exposures that are 50 times higher than the current whole body safety limits set by the FCC for radiofrequency energy exposure.” This statement is confusing to me. I don’t believe he is talking about the NTP study here, but rather has switched to talking about the FCC exposure guidelines in general, which are based on one kind of biological effect only—-heat damage from high intensity frequencies. These “whole body safety limits” supposedly protect the public with a 50-fold safety margin, and workers with a 10-fold safety margin. In fact, given the level at which cancers showed up in the NTP study, it turns out the safety margin is, in reality, less than 4-fold, and that’s assuming you accept the now-outmoded hypothesis that heating is the only biological effect of concern. Furthermore, you have to look at the Ramazzini results, where exposures were much lower, well within the range of normal cell phone exposures, and still the cancers were seen. See James Lin’s article from an IEEE publication https://ieeexplore.ieee.org/document/8425056/ He is an expert who has been respected worldwide, even by the industry, over the years. Or read excerpts at https://www.saferemr.com/search?q=analysis+of+ntp

    Mr. Shuren also questioned the: “…unusual findings in the study, such as: the rats exposed to whole body radiofrequency energy lived longer than rats that were not exposed to any radiation (control group); only male rats exposed to the highest radiofrequency energy dosage developed a statistically significant number of heart schwannomas, which are very rare in humans, when compared to the control group in this experiment. There was also no true dose response, or a lack of a clear relationship between the doses of radiation administered to the animals and their subsequent tumor rate.”

    First, it is not unusual to find some positive results from RF exposure in some studies. With better knowledge of these processes, and careful controls, they may be put to positive medical use. Second, sex differences in cancer incidence is nothing unusual. Third, heart schwannomas are rare in rats, too, not just humans, and other heart abnormalities were also found in exposed rats. Fourth, many experiments with non-ionizing radiation do not exhibit dose-response effects–some do, some don’t. That does not disqualify them. There may be window effects as there are with many other agents. We are talking about living biological systems and an agent that is not as easy to track or control, and may not behave the same as chemical agents. Please see Dr. Joel Moskowitz’s remarks on NTP for a more careful epidemiological analysis of the results. https://drive.google.com/file/d/1rFlZuM6sljTU-XLGDeTQrmWPT6blCdZy/view You will see, besides cancers, there were a number of pre-cancerous hyperplasias, as well as tumor incidence increases (i.e., in female rats) that did not reach significance.

    I have very little positive confidence in Mr. Shuren’s remarks. I believe they are remarks of convenience. How bad would FDA look if it admitted concerns and did nothing. Nothing is what it intends to do. I had conversations with Abiy Desta back when he was the prime cell phone liaison between FDA and the industry. He was a good ally to both of them. I asked him why the FDA claimed that it ensured all cell phones met the FCC guidelines, when he knew the SAR body testing was being done (by industry) with a distance of a few critical millimeters away from the test “body,” rather than right up against it, thus significantly underestimating the actual radiation absorbed by the body in normal use. He said, “Yeah, we asked the FCC why they granted that exemption to the industry when they did SAR testing.” “And…?” “They never got back to us.” Meanwhile, France has re-tested cell phone body SARs, this time up against the body (with no mm distance), to compare with advertised SARs. They found 90% of cell phones tested without this intervening distance exceeded exposure guidelines. So there you can see, your FDA watchdog has hardly been at work protecting the public.

  2. Louis Slesin

    Like you, many press reports have questioned the applicability of the NTP findings to the use of handheld cell phones because: 1) the NTP used an outdated signal (2G), and 2) the exposure levels were unrealistically high. I would advise caution before using either of these arguments to discount the NTP results. Here’s why:

    1) There is no assurance that later cell phone systems (3G, 4G and soon 5G) are any safer. Indeed, two German labs ran independent experiments exposing mice to 3G and in each case they found higher rates of cancer.

    2) With respect to levels of exposure, it’s important to understand that the NTP (as well as one of the German labs using 3G) saw a stronger effect at low doses. The fact is no one yet knows how much is too much cell phone radiation exposure.

    For more on all this, please see:
    https://microwavenews.com/short-takes-archive/ntp-notes

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