The National Toxicology Program under the National Institutes of Health has completed the largest-ever animal study on cell phone radiation and cancer. The results confirm that cell phone radiation exposure levels within the currently allowable safety limits are the “likely cause” of brain and heart cancers in these animals, according to Dr. John Bucher, Associate Director of the NTP.
One in twelve (12) male rats developed either malignant cancer (brain and rare heart tumors) or pre-cancerous lesions that can lead to cancer. Tumors called schwannomas were induced in the heart, in the same kind of cells in the brain that have lead to acoustic neuromas seen in human studies. The NTP says it is important to release these completed findings now given the implications to global health. No cancers occurred in the control group.
Lennart Hardell, MD, PhD of Orebro University says
“(T)he animal study confirms our findings in epidemiological studies of an increased risk for glioma and acoustic neuroma among people that use wireless phones, both cell phones and cordless phones (DECT). Acoustic neuroma is a type of Schwannoma, so interestingly this study confirms findings in humans of increased risk for glioma and acoustic neuroma. In 2013 we called for upgrading the risk in humans to Group 1, the agent is carcinogenic to humans. It is now time to re-evaluate both the cancer risk and other potential health effects in humans from radiofrequency radiation and also inform the public.” says Hardell. “This NTP evidence is greatly strengthening the evidence of risk, is sufficient to reclassify cell phone radiation as a known cancer-causing agent, and confirms the inadequacy of existing public safety limits.”
The World Health Organization’s 10-year study of human use of mobile phones concluded there is an increased risk for malignant brain tumors among the heavier mobile phone users, particularly where it is used mostly on one side of the head. The 2010 Interphone mega-study of cancer in humans using mobile phones found higher cancer risk, but at that time there was little animal testing to support the risks identified in humans. Now, this NTP study has shown statistically significant risks with a dose-response relationship to the amount of exposure. It proves that non-ionizing radiation can plausibly cause cancer, not just ionizing radiation like x-rays and puts to rest the traditional scientific argument that cell phone radiation can’t do harm.
Dr. Bucher said the animals’ exposure was about the same as for people who are heavy users of cell phones. He also confirmed that the exposure of 1.5 W/Kg is lower than currently allowed under FCC public safety limits. Testing on rats is standard in predicting human cancers.
The BioInitiative Report (2014) documents nervous system effects in 68% of studies on radiofrequency radiation (144 of 211 studies). This has increased from 63% in 2012 (93 of 150 studies). Genetic effects (damage to DNA) from radiofrequency radiation is reported in 65% (74 of 114 studies); and 83% (49 of 59 studies) of extremely-low frequency studies.
Dr. Christopher Portier, formerly with the NTP commented this is not just an associated finding—but that the relationship between radiation exposure and cancer is clear. “I would call it a causative study, absolutely. They controlled everything in the study. It’s [the cancer] because of the exposure. “This is by far—far and away—the most carefully done cell phone bioassay, a biological assessment. This is a classic study that is done for trying to understand cancers in humans”.
Lennart Hardell, MD, PhD [email protected]