2/3 RCR Wireless News article
RF brain damage link found
in Swedish study
by JEFFREY SILVA
* February 03, 2003
WASHINGTON-A Swedish-funded study published in an U.S. government health
journal says mobile-phone exposure caused brain damage in lab rats.
The study, published last Wednesday in the online edition
of the journal Environmental Heath Perspectives, is said to represent
the first time researchers have found damage to neurons in rat brains
exposed to radiation from mobile phones. Researchers said radiation from
GSM mobile phones, which are prevalent around the world, was associated
with leakage in the blood-brain barrier. The blood-brain barrier serves
as a filter of sorts that shields the brain from harmful chemicals.
"If it's replicated as a study it may indicate
an insufficiency in our current standard," said Robert Curtis, a
scientist at the Occupational Safety and Health Agency and a member of
a panel of the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers that
is crafting updated radiation exposure guidelines for mobile phones and
The mobile phone industry insists mobile phones do
not pose a health risk. Government health officials here and overseas
say research to date has not linked wireless handsets to adverse biological
effects in humans, but they say they cannot guarantee phones are safe
and that more research is needed. There are 140 million mobile phone subscribers
in the United States and more than 1 billion worldwide.
Industry downplayed the new
"The scientific community, public health authorities
and others presumably will treat this as they would any researcher claiming
a novel finding," said Norm Sandler, director of global strategic
issues for Motorola Inc. "They will ask questions about the design,
the exposures and the statistics underlying the reported results to assess
its significance in a proper context."
Last September, a federal judge in Baltimore dismissed
an $800-million brain cancer suit against Motorola. But U.S. District
Judge Catherine Blake-who ruled plaintiffs failed to provide sufficient
scientific evidence to warrant a jury trial-still has a slew of similar
cases ending before her. The Motorola cancer suit is being challenged
in the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit in Richmond, Va. Attorneys
at the law firm of Peter Angelos, owner of the Baltimore Orioles and a
trial lawyer who has won huge judgments in tobacco and asbestos litigation,
filed the opening brief on behalf of 43-year-old Christopher Newman on
Jan. 21. Motorola and possibly other wireless firms are expected to file
responses later this month.
Environmental Health Perspectives is the journal of
National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences, of Research Triangle
Park, N.C., a unit of the National Institutes of Health and a branch of
the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. Brandon Adams, a spokesman
for the journal, said the mobile phone study was peer reviewed and that
96 percent of scientific papers submitted to the publication are rejected.
The journal's press release said researchers, led by
Leif Salford of the Department of Neurosurgery at Lund University in Sweden,
studied 12- to 26-week-old rats because their developmental age is comparable
to that of human teenagers-heavy users of mobile phones The research was
funded by a grant from the Swedish Council for Work Life Research.
"The situation of the growing brain might deserve
special attention since biological and maturational processes are particularly
vulnerable," the researchers stated. "We cannot exclude that
after some decades of often daily use, a whole generation of users may
suffer negative effects as early as middle age."
The researchers, who acknowledged their study sample
was small, nevertheless said the combined results are highly significant
and exhibit a clear, dose-response relation. Establishing causation is
a key element in health litigation.
"Scientists have been looking for some time at
the possible effects of exposure to the energy coming out of cellular
phones," said Jim Burkhart, science editor of Environmental Health
Perspectives. "These scientists decided to look in a new place, studying
potential nerve damage, rather than cancer growth. Their results suggest
a strong need for further study, as we all rely on cell phones more and
Jo-Anne Basile, vice president of external and industry
relations at the Cellular Telecommunications & Internet Association,
urged caution. "You cannot make a judgment based on a single study.
You want to look at the way research is trending and at the preponderance
of scientific evidence." Basile said studies continue to show no
adverse health effects from mobile phones, adding that handset emission
is subject to strict federal guidelines.
Message from JEFFREY SILVA
Association between occupational
exposure to power frequency electromagnetic fields and amyotrophic lateral
sclerosis: A review.
Li CY, Sung FC.
Department of Public Health, College of Medicine, Fu-Jen
Catholic University, Taipei Hsien, Taiwan Republic of China.
BACKGROUND: For the past two decades, there has been
concern over electromagnetic exposure and human health. While most research
has focused on cancer and reproductive outcomes, there is interest in
the relationship between electromagnetic fields (EMF) and neurodegenerative
METHODS: We review epidemiological findings and evidence
regarding the association between occupational exposure to power frequency
EMFs and amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS). Medline was searched for
citations related to occupational hazards and ALS, literature reviews
and epidemiological evaluations.
RESULTS: Nine out of the ten epidemiological studies
that have been conducted on the risk of ALS in relation to occupational
exposure to EMF show moderate to strong relative risk estimates that supported
a link between them.
Although data from these studies was consistent, the
causal inference to a link between EMF exposure and ALS is restricted
mainly due to the lack of direct information on EMF exposure and incomplete
consideration of the other potential risk factors for ALS at workplaces.
For instance, electric shock, in particular, is more common in electrical
occupations than in any other occupations.
CONCLUSIONS: This review concludes that further studies
should consider investigating the separate effect of EMF exposure and
electrical shocks to make more specific interpretations. On-site measurements
of EMF should be conducted to include information on EMF exposure from
residences as well as workplaces to improve exposure assessment.
Source: Am J Ind Med 2003 Feb;43(2):212-20
Interactive effect of chemical
substances and occupational electromagnetic field exposure on the risk
of gliomas and meningiomas in Swedish men.
Navas-Acien A, Pollan M, Gustavsson P, Floderus
B, Plato N, Dosemeci M.
Environmental and Cancer Epidemiology Area, National
Center for Epidemiology, Carlos III Institute of Health, 28029 Madrid,
Spain [A. N-A., M. P.].
The objective of our study was to investigate the possible
interactive effect of occupational exposure to extremely low-frequency
magnetic field (ELFMF) and to known or suspected carcinogenic chemicals
on the incidence of the two main histological types of brain cancer, gliomas
and meningiomas, in a cohort of male Swedish workers.
The historical cohort of all Swedish men gainfully
employed in 1970 were followed 19 years (1971-1989). Exposure to ELFMF
and to nine chemicals were assessed using two Swedish job exposure matrices
based on occupational codes and industrial activity. Relative risks adjusted
for age, period, geographical area, and town size were computed using
log-linear Poisson models.
The main finding was the absence of ELFMF effect on
glioma risk in the absence of a simultaneous exposure to chemical products.
The effect of petroleum products was independent of
the intensity of ELFMF exposure whereas solvents, lead, and pesticides/herbicides
were only associated with glioma in workers also exposed to moderate or
high levels of ELFMF.
On the other hand, whereas ELFMF seemed to enhance
the effect of specific chemicals in the causation of gliomas, we did not
find a relationship between ELFMF exposure and meningiomas.
The potential for ELFMF to act as an effect modifier
of the association of chemical agents and glioma is an interesting new
It would be worthwhile to evaluate this hypothesis
for other tumors.
Also, it is necessary to confirm these results in epidemiological
studies with individual exposure assessments, and in experimental studies
that may elucidate whether there is a true causal mechanism for the results
Cancer Epidemiol Biomarkers Prev 2002 Dec;11(12):1678-83
Informant: Reinhard Rückemann
Spherical Cow Concept -
I am looking for the precise specification of the "Spherical
Cow Concept" described by Dr. Robert O. Becker. Is the only basic
and first (laboratory) development to "establish" the power
of density of microwaves emitted on persons, children and pregnant women..
Described in the Practical Guidelines:
2.1. THERMAL EFFECT AND ERROR IN COEFFICIENT 10 "
Exposure to powerful microwave radiation (RF) increases
the temperature of animals and human beings. It may cause adverse health
effects immediately. This increase in temperature has been studied by
physicists and engineers using artificial spherical models.
They based their findings on the "spherical cow
concept". The initial heating undergone by a cow's body as a result
of microwave radiation allowed them to establish a "safe level":
the power of radiation is "10 times smaller"!.
Dr. William Steward. "Both the NRPB and ICNIRP
guidelines are based on the need to avoid known adverse health effects.
At the time these guidelines were drawn up, the only established adverse
effects were those caused by the heating of tissues (1.15)."
Dr. Robert Becker. New York. Twice Dr. Becker has been
nominated for a Nobel Prize in Medicine. Published by Linda Moulton Howe
in EARTHFILES London (May 2000). "That level was applied for several
decades to everything that concerned electromagnetic pollution. Of course,
this is not correct."
An important lawyer ask me to provide this basic reference
and the official NORM.
Have you any information about: Weight, materials,
characteristics and NORM?
Thank you and best regards
DB 9702 Electromagnetic Compatibility of Medical
Devices with Mobile Communications
Issued March 1997
£49.95 (Free to UK health and social care providers)
An electronic copy of this document is not available
The compatibility of mobile communication equipment
with medical devices is an area where much published information and guidance
is conflicting. We have hence organised a large study, based on research
conducted at 18 locations including hospitals and MDA evaluation centres.
Data were gathered for 178 different models of medical device using a
wide range of radio handsets. Overall, in 23% of tests medical devices
suffered electromagnetic interference (EMI) from handsets. 43% of these
interference incidents would have had a direct impact on patient care,
and were rated as serious.
Similar handsets were grouped together on the basis
of their effects on devices:
Emergency radios, used by ambulance, police and fire
personnel. Security radios, used by security, maintenance staff, and porters.
Cellphones, including analogue and digital mobile phones. Cordless phones,
including pagers, and radio computer local area networks.
The type of radio handset made a large difference to the likelihood of
41% of medical devices suffered interference from emergency
radio handsets at a distance of 1m, with 49% of the responses being serious
35% of medical devices suffered interference from security
radio handsets at a distance of 1m, with 49% of the responses being serious
By comparison only 4% of devices suffered interference
from cellphones at a distance of 1m, with less than 0.1% showing serious
effects. There were no marked differences between analogue and digital
Our tests failed to detect significant levels of interference
from cordless phones and radio computer local area networks, which are
installed in some hospitals.
Some categories of medical device have a high susceptibility
to interference. Physiological monitors, or devices incorporating them,
such as defibrillators or external pacemakers, were the most severely
affected. For every device type, some models consistently performed better
Cellular base stations (the arrays of aerials on the
roofs of tall buildings which relay mobile phone messages to the telephone
system) are unlikely to interfere with medical devices, unless they are
exceptionally sensitive. The highest field strengths were found just inside
windows in buildings adjacent to those with aerials on the roof, particularly
where the window was at a comparable height to the aerial.