• Greek proteomics study on effect of cell phone radiation on mice brain

Few days ago research group from Greece published study that examined effects of cell phone radiation and DECT phone radiation on mice brain using proteomics approach. After exposure to radiation, that was generated by regular phones connected to network and playing music, mice brains were examined for changes in expression levels of hundreds of proteins.

Greek researchers concluded that both cell phone radiation and DECT phone radiation alters amounts of over 100 proteins in mice brain. In the press release researchers pointed out that the affected proteins are important in regulation of learning, memory and in regulation of processes leading to Alzheimer’s disease.

Unfortunately, the Greek study falls far from the target.

The only effect that was somewhat shown is the possibility that cell phone radiation might alter levels of some brain proteins. The indication of the processes that might be affected was a pure speculation because the data obtained from the proteomic analysis were insufficiently confirmed. Certain proteins were named as affected but the confirmation experiments that the change is real were not performed.

Analysis of changes in protein expression was performed using 2D-electrophoresis followed by detection of proteins by coomassie blue staining. Thereafter, the images of stained gels were analyzed using the PDQuest software. This is already “obsolete” approach.

  • Execution of proteomic analysis by relying on manual matching of the protein spots in 2D-gels is inaccurate. This approach was justified, though already outdated, few years ago. Currently the method of choice, that secures accuracy of matching, is the 2D-DIGE method where internal standard, exposed sample and sham sample, labeled with different stains, are run in the same gel. This assures that the same protein in exposed and in sham sample will localize to the same spot on the 2D-gel.
  • Because of the above, the number of the affected proteins indicated in the study might be very inaccurate. Especially, that some of the protein spots seen in the representative gel are very faint and some areas where the “affected” proteins are located, the background is very high. These increase the inaccuracy of manual matching between exposed and control samples.
  • Internal standard in 2D-DIGE, that is the same for all gels makes possible to compare protein amounts between gels what assures reliability of the analyses. Lack of such uniform internal standard in this study makes analysis of the expression changes inaccurate.

Table 2 of the article lists all affected proteins and informs whether there was increase or decline in the expression of protein.

  • Unfortunately, the authors did not mention the ratios of increase/decline in protein expression for each of the proteins. This information would be very valuable in estimating potential effects on signaling pathways.

The changes in expression of proteins detected using 2D-electrophoresis were not confirmed with other methods, like western blot (except for a couple of proteins). The information obtained by 2D-electrophoresis is very inaccurate. The changes in the expression of proteins must be confirmed. Only 2D-electrophoresis data are insufficient even if the statistical analysis shows changes as significant. Out of the over 100 proteins detected as responding to the exposure many will be false positives. Especially, because of the limitations of 2D-proteomic approach described above (spot size, background, manual matching).

Because it is not known which of the proteins listed in Table 2 are really affected, the pathway network generated with their use by Ingenuity Pathway Analysis is useless. Many of the proteins included in it might be false findings and, consequently, the pathways finds – false. And we do not know which are which.

Because of the inaccuracy of 2D-proteomics used in this study many of the “affected” proteins might be false observations whet leads, in turn, to detection of false pathways using Ingenuity Pathway Analysis. This causes that the whole discussion about the potential impact of the “observed changes” in certain protein expression on the brain physiology and on the potential health risks is baseless. It is not supported by the experimental data presented in the study.

One can wonder why reviewers of this study did not request additional experiments or shortening of the manuscript by removing all speculative, not supported by the data, content of the discussion. The study in its current format should be not published. At least confirmatory experiments showing that the 2D-detected changes are real are must, in this kind of study.

It is certainly study that goes in the right direction, examining molecular level changes in animal brain exposed to cell phone radiation. Unfortunately, the execution of this study prevents drawing any conclusions concerning the possible health effects of this radiation.

The risks listed in the press release are not supported by the experimental evidence as presented in the study.

Because of the “grave consequences” of the exposure, presented in this study but not supported by the data, it would be prudent if the authors would either immediately publish erratum or withdraw the study and perform additional experiments.

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61 thoughts on “• Greek proteomics study on effect of cell phone radiation on mice brain

  1. Pingback: Anniversary with WordPress: Five years of BRHP blogging | BRHP – Between a Rock and a Hard Place

  2. Doris,

    Yes, I am aware of this statement by Igor and I fully disagree with the opinion that the Greek study is an outstanding study.

    It is not.

    Greek study uses outdated technology for 2D electrophoresis and 2D-gel analysis. Such studies were good still 5-10 years ago but not anymore. Technology that is very much prone to researcher error. Now the gold standard in 2D is 2D-DIGE where it is possible to run control and experimental sample in the same gel and on top of it add still internal control that allows to make direct comparisons between gels run separately.

    Greek study has shown that 2 proteins seem to be affected by the exposure. Since this observation was done using brains of exposed animals it is an interesting finding. If confirmed, it will be an important finding. It is not yet confirmed by other study so for me it is now only “interesting” and not yet “important”.

    I disagree with Igor’s opinion. It is going as much overboard as the conclusions in Greek study concerning effects on brain function. Both opinions are not based firmly on facts but are insufficiently substantiated speculations.

    Of course, Igor has the right to his opinion, as well as I to mine. Let’s say the we agree that we disagree with Igor on the Greek study.

    Best, Dariusz

  3. I found in a German forum a link to a posting in u.k. hese-forum, where the Greek proteomic study is also under discussion.
    http://www.hese-project.org/uk_forum/index.php?id=344

    There is obviously a reply from Dr. Igor Belyaev to your criticism on the Greek study but it is unapparent where (no reference) Dr. Belyaev comments your criticism.

    It’s a pity, that he don’t discuss here in the blog direct with you his contrasting opinion about the Greek study. Therefore I put the statement from him here in the blog and beg you to give a reply to the Belyaev comment.
    ________________________________

    Comments by Dr. Igor Beliaev:

    … » I have read carefully the proteomic paper by Fragopoulou et al 2012. While the remarks of Dariusz Leszczynski on proteomics are in general correct, they are hardly applied to this paper, because the paper is actually one of the best, if not the best, in research of MW effects using proteomics

  4. Dr Zinelis,
    The next step would be to confirm that the proteins identified in 2D-gels as affected are indeed affected. This was not done so the whole discussion about potential effects of different proteins is pure speculation not supported by the experimental data.

  5. Some of the comments in this blog are not to the level of a scientific discussion and I do not understand the intentions.
    The purpose of the Greek study was: “…to investigate the effects of two sources of electromagnetic fields (EMFs) on the proteome of cerebellum, hippocampus, and frontal lobe in Balb/c mice following long-term whole body irradiation”. Furthermore, -they suggested from past knowledge that these changes “…may be related to … human health hazards … memory deficits, fatigue …” etc. For example an upper regulation of a protein in the Hippocampus which is responsible for memory could have an influence etc. The next step would be to replicate and study the relationships between changes of these proteins and clinical conditions.

  6. Thanks for the useful information. I really need this topic to share with my friends. I will be back to explore more good topics here at the same time, topics that I can use. Have a good day.

  7. Doris, surely you understand that in provoking the brushing aside of REFLEX, the slanderer(s) have accomplished their goals, of in the main buying time, deflecting attention, casting aspersions on troublesome science, and so on. This is the main point here. I am not per se trying to resuscitate REFLEX, or, how about, decades-old valuable study from E. European literature on the dangers of wireless. REFLEX is not needed to conclude fairly about the grave dangers of wireless; however, from that link you say you “must not read”:

    “Prof. Alexander Lerchl – at that time member and since 2009 head of the Committee for Non-ionizing Radiation of the German Commission on Radiological Protection (SSK) of the Federal Office for Radiation Protection (BfS) – responsible for the protection of public health came to a dramatic prognosis: if the Vienna research results should turn out to be true, this would be the beginning of the end of mobile communication.”

    The main issue is culture rot, and from the seeming magnification wildly out of all proportion of some minor irregularity at one lab, to onlookers’ acquiescence therein, you have a symptomatic exemplar.

  8. Adlkofer has no credibility according the WHO letter which described the attempts of the tobacco scientists, under his leadership, to “distort” research. One would think Deever would walk away from this lobbyist rather than to foolishly defend him. I cannot understand Deever’s motives, but I think it speaks to his credibility.

    I’ll remind everyone that the Professor criticized not only the study but the review process. The senior researcher, Dr. Margaritis, bears responsibility.

    I cannot speak to the rigor and standards of the Athens lab but from what I read in this blog everything from Athens must be independently replicated elsewhere.

    It seems that if you find an effect, in Deever’s world, you stand on unimpeachable ground — regardless of how shoddy the facility and staff may be.

    If an “industry friendly” result came from a lab with such standards, would Deever remain so lenient?

  9. Deever,
    I must not read the brochure of the competenceinitiative. I know the whole discussion, have read all the brochures and papers from Dr. Lerchl and Dr. Adlkofer and Co since the beginning of these “fight”. I have formed a well reasonable opinion for me and I want only say, it’s presumably not so simple as some believes or want to believe.
    But read the newest comment from Dr. Leszcynski in his new column at WTC to the REFLEX Project (as answer to Birons question). I total agree with him and his opinion in his comment.
    I don’t know who Biron is and what his background is. I believe that he has not the same reason to be here as I, but in some things I agree with him and what he says is correct.

    I remain with my opinion about Dr. Adlkofer and all who support him and I will not change this. But meanwhile I wonder, whether all (from both sides) who are involved in the DNA-controversy are sincerely interested in investigation of cell-phone risks.

    I come here in this Blog and to the column of Dr. Leszczynski, because after
    all I’ve read I think (I hope !) he is honest and really interested to find out the truth. And therefore I pursue his writings and all the comments.

  10. As I mentioned at one of the DL WT columns, I do not know anything about Adlkofer’s tobacco background really, but that should have possible background relevance only, diminishing as unimpeachable others are joined to what he says. I take the moment to speak to this here, because it was I who gave his account — co-authored by someone we should wait for Biron to attempt one of his hapless impeachments on — as sample among many in the WT comments section a few columns ago. Read the text referred to, it is clear enough (in spite of the thick syntax), it’s rendered into English.
    http://broschuerenreihe.net/britannien-uk/brochure/radiation-protection-in-conflict-with-science/index.html

    As for another of Biron’s hapless impeachment attempts at WT, one in particular should be ignored, his baselessly strange impugning by association anyone working at Athens. Panagopoulos’ work stands out, and his persecution is telltale & typical of brave scholars reporting clear results, let alone his working out theoretical cellular-level “mechanism” of disturbance. Even were there never to be evidence satisfying strictest rigour, as I take DL to be dedicated to in his way, about humanly deleterious bioeffects, evidence of likely ongoing decimation near the bottom of the food chain — as indicated in fruit fly reproductive capacity destruction rigourously & repeatedly demonstrated by Panagopoulos — should be an alarm bell to cancel or drastically cut back this universal environmental irritant, exacerbator, causal initiator in its own right (however much Biron & co just love their playthings).

  11. Biron wrote:
    Dr. Adlkofer’s conduct as a Big Tobacco scientist was challenged by the WHO here:

    http://www.who.int/tobacco/dy_speeches4/en/

    __________________

    It was in August 2000, when Dr. Derek Yach made the role of Dr. Adlkofer in the Tobacco-risks-research public in Hannover.

    German scientists knew from the start that the true battleground was, and still is, passive smoking. They did everything they could to deny, distort, suppress and finally ignore the overwhelming evidence that passive smoking causes several causes of death and disease in adults and children

    And it was in March 2001, Dr. Adlkofer still hadn’t scruple to play down or can we say deny the harms of passive smoking.
    His comment in the German magazine “Deutsche Ärzteblatt” is unfortunately not in english available (http://www.aerzteblatt.de/archiv/26659/Gesundheitsrisiken-durch-Passivrauchen-Ueber-das-Ziel-hinaus)

    The conclusion from Dr.Adlkofer is – translated in Englisch:
    From theoretical considerations is not to be excluded(expelled) of course that the lung cancer risk rises(builds up) by passive smoking slightly. In the endeavours, these presently not to make provable connection at least extremely likely, it is fired out obviously(clearly) well over the aim.

    To me, the Dr.Adlkofer/Tobacco history and the discussion about the possible impact on cell-phone-risk research is well known, therefore I have no trust in Dr. Adlkofer. And I also have my problems with people who support him and see him as “figurehead” in cell-phone risks research.

    For me credibility is a very important point in the cellphone-risks research.

  12. There is not an orchestrated conspiracy theory. There are a number of independent and loosely aligned groups who could benefit by taking a few whacks at this $300 billion pinata.

    Tobacco, lawyers, merchants of RF protection, politicians, research labs, consultants, conspiracy theory book authors and anti-wireless websites.

  13. Alasdair,
    I certainly agree that, per analogiam, there needs to exist phenomenon of “sensitivity to EMF”. We just need correctly designed and executed study to prove it.
    I also agree with you that the so far executed provocation studies are of poor design and therefore produced misleading results.

  14. For the chattering clases, including many scientists, yes! However, I have worked with EHS claiming people for over 15 years now and I am completely convinced that a fair percentage of them (say 10 to 30%) are genuinely reacting to real EMF/RF fields. Remove the fields (DECT, WiFi, etc, screen the rooms and windows if a nearby mobile phone base station) and these people live and sleep OK again. There are lots more who are suffering from other modern chronic adverse effects of their well-being from many other causes and who think they are caused by RF – some may well be, but I do believe that many people just see trigger sights (equipment, masts, etc) and react. I have worked with RF, building and using transmitters, for 50 years now and about 20 years ago became slightly ES myself. I kept diaries and RF field measurements and I would get headaches that lasted to up to 24 hours after exposure. Hotels with widespread WiFi are deadly for me. So I choose to avoid wireless devices as much as I can (no cellphone, no cordless phone, no WiFi / wLAN – but lots of wired broadband communications and computer use. That keeps me generally feeling OK. But an hour in a home with a DECT cordless and my head is bothering me. There is not an “absence of facts” – but there are a many poorly designed provocation studies carried out in labs by researchers who really do not understand the issue well enough to realise you can’t test it like that. The UK MTHR tests are gopod example of inadeqaute understanding. You need at least 24-hour wash out (preferably 36/48 hour) with no EMF exposure and then carry out prober double blind tests (with real zero exposure for sham exposure!!!) that last for hours and monitor effects for several hours afterwards. They would be expensive tests that no-one has yet funded. Until then we should at the very least be carrying out post-market heath and well-being surveillance – especially on school children who sit in WiFi Access Point classrooms for hours each day. None of that is being done. Nothing at all is being done to apply the Precautionary Principle required under EC law. ICNIRP is only cautionary (against established effects) and not precautionary at all under the EC definition of the P.P.

  15. Oil and tobacco laying false trials? – I think not. I say that both from personal experience of the many ordinary people (and scientists and engineers) who believe they are affected by EMF/RF exposure and also, if the cellphone industry were to wobble badly it would be disasterous for the world economy – a $300bn annual industry is far too important to other industrialists and governments for anyone with power, control and ownership of money to want to de-stabilise it. That idea, for me, is a really daft conspiricy theory. The UK IET (equivalent of USA IEEE) BEPAG Advisory group do not believe EMF/RF adversely affect our health but they do admit to about 75% of new experimental research on EMF/RF bioeffects in 2009-2010 showed bio-effects. See page 4 of the 2010 report – Google ‘IET BEPAG’ to find the download link. EMF/RF bio-effects are real. We await further evidence to see if they really relate to health effects – but low levels of ELF/LF pulsed magnetic fields are regularly used to stimulate non-healing bone fractures into starting to heal. This is not a conspiracy driven by oil and tobacco industries. Ridiculous idea!

  16. Biron,
    Your comments are very interesting. The tobacco link is disturbing. I was also informed that the oil industry was supporting “cell phone controversy” to take peoples’ attention elsewhere. Though I do not know if this is truth or just a gossip. It seems that there would be a lot of work for “Committee of Independent & Unbiased Fellows”.

  17. If someone doesn’t believe the results of this article, this person should contact the Greek scientists and talk to them. But the truth about the danger of wireless technology should be known by everybody.

    Conclusion

    We should recognize that there is a conflict between economic and scientific interests, which has been part and parcel of industrialization of the world from its beginning. As can be seen throughout the history of science, this conflict manifests itself very clearly when certain products or their applications that promise great financial profits are presumed to be associated with risks to human health and the environment. Research findings with possible consequences for the economy, especially when they cannot be reconciled with the currently established paradigm, may have a particularly difficult time.
    At the moment, mobile phone research is a striking case in point. Industry and politics tend to take the view in regard of possible health risks of RF radiation that wireless technologies are safe for humans. Even though the current state of knowledge no longer allows for such an assumption, this view is defended by all means. The industry relentlessly employs its huge profits from this technology to push through their interests – with specific public relations and by influencing political decisions.

  18. The Athens Lab, and Drs. Fragapoulou and Margaritas have become darlings of the anti-wireless movement. A quick internet search returns hits with their research prominently featured on anti-wireless websites.

    ICEMS “Expert” Martin Blank praised this research. Dr. Devra Davis has referenced other Athens research on a radio debate.

    How would the alternative scenario, “inconclusive” or “no effect” look?

    They would likely become personna-non-gratta (as we can see from some comments to the Professor on this board) and their work would not be publicized. Would their be funding for travel to an ICEMS junket/conference where “experts” luxuriate in places such as the Alps, Venice or Brazilian coast? What would happen to funding for the Athens lab if the celebrity scientists from ICEMS stopped praising its work?

    I don’t know what lies behind the sloppy research and rush to publication of these conclusions whose validity the Professor questions.

    But this is black eye for “experts” in the anti-wireless movement. Their protectors are out in force.

  19. Lloyd,
    1. I do not miss the point. The interesting finding of this study is, as I wrote in my science blog “The only effect that was somewhat shown is the possibility that cell phone radiation might alter levels of some brain proteins.”. I used word “somewhat” because the 2D-proteomics method used in the study is inaccurate and prone to researcher-sight-error. It is pity that the overstatements obstruct and to a degree invalidate the real finding of this study.
    2. Let’s not mix Greek economic crisis with the Greek proteomics study. There is no correlation and it cannot be an excuse.
    3.You suggest that one of my comments is a “serious overstatement”. With all due respect I very strongly disagree. The statement depicts the status of research presented in the article. Your following sentences say that “Most of your concerns can be confirmed”. Yes, they can be. But they were not in the Greek study as it was published. The wishful thinking should not cloud your sight.
    4. The number of comments does not mean much. It certainly does not mean that the study is important. Just the huge “hoopla” made on internet about this study causes interest. The “hoopla” or “publicity” was unfounded because the study is not good enough to be considered a “landmark”. Rgather it is a “landmark” of overstatements that are not supported by the data.
    5. Your push for publicizing this study even more than it was already is seriously questionable from the science ethics view. You know that the study is faulty but you close your eyes and push for publicity because the unfounded and overstated conclusions of this study suit your ideas. It is wrong approach that is hurting firther research on cell phones and health.

  20. Lloyd:

    “Honest researchers would be those without a financial conflict of interest either personally or via their funding sources, and who would truly replicate their methodology, versus non-replication, replication studies favored by industry-fund efforts to disprove an unfavorable finding”

    Who is “honest” is a very partisan issue. I don’t trust industry. I don’t work for them. I simply believe the product is phenomenal. I also believe that there are honest people working in industry.

    The fact that industry would deny harmful effects does not mean that there are harmful effects.

    I would like you to tell me if we could assume that these would be without conflict:

    1) A scientist who works for the tobacco industry who might be under pressure to find another carcinogenic product.

    2) A scientist who serves as a plaintiff’s expert witness in a nearly one billion dollar lawsuit against various wireless companies.

    3) A scientist who promotes a multi-level marketing company that produces a radiation healing formula.

    4) A president of a consulting company that sells solutions and/or services to minimize the effects of EMF.

    I am extremely suspicious of the motives of ICEMS and many anti-wireless sites. I have seen a number of anti-wireless grass-roots movements whose members lie or are grossly misinformed and politicians who pander to them.

    This is an industry with hundreds of billions of dollars at stake. Industry wants to protect its franchise. But there is a lot opportunity for alarmists as well.

  21. Dr. Adlkofer’s conduct as a Big Tobacco scientist was challenged by the WHO here:

    http://www.who.int/tobacco/dy_speeches4/en/

    This editorial describes his ties with Big Tobacco and suggests that Big Tobacco has an interest in RF studies that show harmful effects ( and we know Big Tobacco’s reputation for honest science).

    http://www.labtimes.org/editorial/e_063.html

    And here is another side to this story:

    http://www.sciencestew.com/articles/cellphones/CellphoneFraud.pdf

    So what is it — a massive conspiracy by universities, industry, media etc. or just Big Tobacco doing what it does best?

  22. Dear Deborah, Dariusz, and all,
    Prior to the introduction of cellphone in the Untied States, US Government Agency, the Food & Drug Administration (FDA) required all electrical devices placed on the body be tested for safety before they could be sold.

    Perhaps the only person inside the FDA who knew what an electromagnetic field was, was Dr. May Swicord. His PhD these showed microwave radiation effected DNA. Reportedly, Dr. Swicord championed a “low power exclusion,” which allowed the cellphones to be sold without pre-market safety testing. Shortly after the low power exclusion was granted tot he cellphone industry Swicord joined Motorola as a Senior Executive.

  23. Dear Dariusz,
    While much of your criticism may have validity, I would suggest that you miss the point.

    The paper’s essential point is that cellphone microwave radiation changes brain proteins in mice brains. Whether or not particular processes are affected is beside the point. Any change in brain proteins is the essential point, and if confirmed would be alarming.

    While these Greek researchers may not have used the most up-to-date tools, not every research laboratory is able to afford the latest tools. While the latest tools may be better than the previous generation, the previous generation’s tools were adequate or they would not have been developed.

    Greece has been undergoing a major financial crisis for an extended period of time, yet in spite of this very difficult constraint they have produced a very important paper.

    I would suggest that you write the corresponding author and ask for “the ratios of increase/decline in protein expression for each of the proteins.”

    You write a serious overstatement: “Because of the inaccuracy of 2D-proteomics used in this study many of the “affected” proteins might be false observations [which] leads, in turn, to detection of false pathways using Ingenuity Pathway Analysis. This causes that the whole discussion about the potential impact of the “observed changes” in certain protein expression on the brain physiology and on the potential health risks is baseless.” The implication is that “many” (i.e., not all) proteins might be false observations does not make the results “baseless”.

    Most of your concerns can be confirmed, or not, by honest researchers who wish to replicate their findings [Honest researchers would be those without a financial conflict of interest either personally or via their funding sources, and who would truly replicate their methodology, versus non-replication, replication studies favored by industry-fund efforts to disprove an unfavorable finding].
    • Changes in the expression of proteins can be confirmed in true replication studies;
    • “The study in its current format should be not published.” But that it has been published is important because honest efforts to confirm its results are essential. I would assume that this is something you could to at STUK.

    Lastly, the sheer number of comments you have received. speaks quite loudly of the importance of this study.

  24. The call that I made, to withdraw the study and to resubmit it again with an additional data, that is now missing, does not fee extreme.

    Currently the Greek study is a valid, published in peer-reviewed journal scientific evidence of the effect of cell phone radiation on learning, memory and even Alzheimer’s. It is then allowed, for anyone writing a new study report or a review to cite this study as evidence.

    Unfortunately the evidence is not there. This means that the conclusions of this study are misleading the readers. This is especially worrisome when non-scientist citizen-movement groups read it and accept the evidence simply because it is published.

    Publication of such unfinished studies causes great harm to the credibility of the cell phone research field as a whole.

    That is why call for withdrawal is not extreme. What is extreme is that such unfinished study has passed the peer-review of the journal. It suggests to me that the review was of poor quality.

  25. are you saying then that the goldsmiths review of the lileinfield et al work in 1978 is also fraught with similar inconsistencies and to be dismissed??

  26. Vicky, you are correct that the low-cost precautionary measures should have been implemented already 10 years ago. Already then we knew that cell phone radiation can induce biological effects. This does not automatically mean that this radiation is harmful. However, it indicates that the health effects are possible. Already then, as now, we had no possibility to predict what might happen to the people who will use cell phones for tens of years. Kids going to school at age of 6-7 years get their first cell phones. It means that they have ahead of them some 80 years of using cell phone. What will such long period do to health we do not have the faintest idea. Animal studies, where rats or mice were exposed to cell phone radiation for their lifetime, which is short, did not seem to get any significant health problems. However, tis absolutely does not mean that the same will happen to people. Animal studies executed with low-level cell phone radiation exposures that do not see any effect on the animal do not provide any answers concerning human health. Animal studies where exposures would be high are not possible to perform because of severe heating of animals. Current safety standards prevent such effects. So, yes, precaution should be advocated and implemented. It is the responsability of parents to supervise their children. But parents should be, now and again and again, reminded that precaution is good for their kids.

  27. That is of course true when it comes to proof of harm (which according to the scientific method is effectively “beyond a reasonable doubt”), but it does add to a picture that justifies low-cost precautionary measures, especially given the near-universal adoption of mobile technologies by children.

    That was recognised by the Stewart committee as long ago as 2000 when it recommended under-16’s be advised not to use mobile phones except for short essential calls. And yet 11 years later children and parents are not aware of that advice, nor of the phone companies’ own precautionary warnings.

    Tunnel-vision about inadequacies in the evidence fails to reflect the enormous potential costs to public health given near-universal exposure. Be aware of the huge lobbying power of the phone industry to delay action and influence scientific process and the media debate in much the same way as led to past public health disasters like tobacco.

    An open debate about the evidence is vital but don’t confuse it with the policy debate or let it distract us from the urgent job of public protection.

  28. Unfortunately adding one unreliable study to another unreliable study does not make results of either of them reliable. It does not even make pattern of response or trend because the pieces for the pattern/trend might be completely wrong.

  29. The sad state of affairs is betrayal by the so-called reliable source of science. We all know that science is a method of proving a theory that may work or may not work; is right or wrong. If it doesn’t work then they go back to the drawing board until they find a way to make it work.

    Here we are in the 21st Century and the proliferation of the airways of every conceivable non-ionised and ionised radiation is spreading faster than the Black Death plaque of England.

    The mass marketing of what some say as poorly thought out ideas in regards to the dangers and health risks, lay at the bottom of the barrel. After all those young whiz kids have no idea of consequences of their imaginary-ingenuity is going kill millions over the next decade. Any thought of health risk is thrown out of the window of commonsense and sanity, and they all say: “Prove it!”

    We all know that greed is the essence of science, nothing more and nothing less.

    Six year ago safety regulations was 100milli gauss (mg), then it went to 1,000 mg, and now I believe our so-called radiation watch dog is going to increase it to 1,500mg with views of reaching 2,000mg. Why is this so, which I guess is to cover up all the shoddy electronic and electrical equipment that is coming out of China; and at the same time to make some government officials job much easier.

    Now come on the world, wake up, we all know that science is paid by the hour under the counter, is straightforward greed.

    I see the bees disappearing, and science comes up with some so-called bug that has decimated the bee population. Well, I can say that the six mobile towers around our area within 500 metres are the cause and reason for such.

    I see the plant life struggling to survive from disease, and small production of crops and flowers in our area. All the Wi Fi, Wi Max, and Dect phones around the area and combining with the mobile towers have eliminated all small and medium size birds

    I have proven that growing plants under wire netting, a faraday cage, grew normal than the plant growing beside the wire cage.

    I have a lot of metal in my body, and when I go into large shopping centre, I suffer, and I also set off all the alarms at the airport.

    I stand at the cashier counter and I see how slow I am in doing things at my age, and the young operator, says when I apologise for being so slow, that’s okay I am the same.

    HUH!!!! I was never like that when I was their age.

    Radio frequencies of EMR and EMF, can’t be seen, can’t taste it, can’t smell it, but a human body has approximately 180,000 electrical circuits and science will shield other electronic equipment from interference from other electronic equipment from interfering with their electrical circuits; so what about a human being electrical circuit? Yep, the day will come and humans will be wearing some form of body cloth to protect their body from this maniac radiation.

    Top brain surgeons are saying that they have never seen so many brain tumours in children under that age of 12 years, and in young adults.

    Syndromes are on the increase, and most are labelled as undiagnosable, but most say that it’s an environmental factor. I assume that if our central nervous system is being bombarded 24/7 by every conceivable of radio wave could be classed as an environmental factor, particular when the World Health Organisation has stated that a number of the syndromes are caused by the central nervous system.

    The increase of cerebral palsy and autism are on the increase, but I guess a pregnant woman walking around with a mobile phone in their dress pocket couldn’t have any affect on the unborn child in the womb; or in that case a young child, who for no apparent reason was born perfect then raced to hospital in a fit, and is now a vegetable. Of course the radiation out the mobile phone couldn’t have caused that because it was some environmental factor or a vaccine.

    Science has much to answer to, particularly medical science, the same as those scientists who said that asbestos and passive smoking was SAFE. As I say again: “How safe is safe?”

  30. Publicly calling for the study to be withdrawn seems a rather extreme measure for another modest study that once again seems to come up with the wrong answer.

    Those that have a familiarity with RF bio impact are already aware that this field of science is fraught with ambiguity and readily take on board its limitations. They are perfectly capable of surviving intellectually without undoubtedly well intentioned peer reviewing.

    It is curious that some of the Greek authors’ concerns ie ” That the affected proteins are important in regulation of learning, memory and in regulation of processes leading to Alzheimer’s disease.” are already partially echoed in other clinical studies like the one set out below.

    http://electromagnetichealth.org/electromagnetic-health-blog/russian-res-children-emf/.

    Undoubtedly the Russian study to some might also be dismissed as fraught with glaring inconsistencies etc etc

    Hiding evidence can only serve to prolong the resolution of this complex and exciting jigsaw puzzle by stifling debate. This has worrying implications.

    Panayis Zambellis Luton UK radio amateur G7GMF

  31. Hi Biron,

    It won’t be as prominently as the Danish Cohort study, as this one has (rightly, by the looks of it) gained very little publicity, let alone the international media storm the Danish one got.

    However, it will be in the February science update, with a comment on the criticism it has received and a link to this blog entry.

    Best Regards,
    – Graham

  32. Looks like maybe W Times is censoring out, or just slow to allow in, my comment just below provoked by Biron’s, after a version of my comment already here was also admitted there. Also, some of my comments from a topical private email exchange further below:
    …………….
    Another evasive remark by Biron, evasive of what is actually put before you. A main reason these studies were brought, was that they were from the very same journal as the first one I brought, which study indeed as DL
    says got much publicity. To me, it seems all a convoluted way to establish the real & obvious dangers of esp. unwitting passive cumulative exposures to “non-ionizing” radiation. The evidence screams as loud as some people’s Frey effect tinnitus therefrom. No need to
    blend up rodent brains for sound public policy judgement. Even less indicated is the ongoing blending up of human brains, ongoing by mass EMF assault. But (for now, issues of needless animal cruelty aside and notwithstanding adhesion by whichever experimenters to established ethical protocols) the pursuit of greater refinement of understanding by scholars, that is FOR ITS OWN SAKE worthwhile, not because public policy on this issue depends decisively on it, it is way past that point anyway to any independent observer untainted at least
    conceptually by modernist mania; the pursuit of understanding is intrinsically of value, which is why I for one refrain from certain critical traipsing on expert territory and respectfully request learned opinion, it is intrinsically valuable itself to a spectator. But the central criticism regards the role of science as it is conducted in our current context and its place in public policy development, here on the crucial matter of public & environmental
    health. The great error, including in logic, is in importing very unscientific assumptions into public policy pronouncement by scientists or those wrongfully relying on them as arbiters, such as, whereas there are scientifically derivable indicators that cell telephony is “not what you thought” (in the words of a title of an over 700-page book already from 2004 by one Israeli public health scholar & advocate on topic), since it is nonetheless well-established, our conclusion with a scientific air should be that mild precaution should be taken. A logician of sorts are you, Biron? Can
    you see no gross error there? Can you see no ethical error there? That studies attesting to harm abound and increase with regularity in spite of serious general lack of funding, almost means nothing to someone
    like you, who seems more perturbed by their very presence than by what they actually say — which your type consistently avoid, in reliance on info filtration by people corrupted by culture or more grossly. To
    get from a to b, if it is really important, one does not need to await the occasional Cadillac that might pass by, one can take one of the many lesser models. High refinement of scientific perception is a high civilizational achievement, but it will not endure at poverty of public oversight such as we suffer from now in a dire way. Relative absence of funding for high independent-minded scientific pursuit in
    bioeffects research, is a symptom of that dire suffering. But DL, Devra Davis and others give the wrongful impression that the cart should be put before the horse, or the Cadillac when many Chevs will do, in matters of public policy. It is way past the point of precaution. Foundations of your culture are threatened by mass sickening and unbearable health cost burden, by the unhinged very
    technology at its heart.
    …………….
    I disagree, why should a blog or newspaper column necessarily be a bad place in principle to publicly discuss even some technical matters? Just such a venue would afford the very much needed opportunity for wider public viewing of what goes on among such scientists, very much needed since there is very little public knowledge or scrutiny of such. This works badly both ways, as few grasp the importance & worth of such study, and the few more powerful can exploit their ignorance by corrupting funding processes etc. It could raise the profile of science, if carefully & respectfully conducted, and contribute to what DL seems out for in the main, more $ for serious research.

    But it was not to conduct a sci. examination per se that was DL’s motivation. Because this study had been very recently highlighted in advocacy on the dangers of wireless by some, and because some significant apparently too scarce funding has been had, these issues in this context make it worthwhile for DL to have commented as he did, relating to those broader matters. It is too bad he seems to want to hold back from my further suggestion that he extend his commentary in this vein to the articles in the same journal concurrently made available. That would show he is not singling out the contentious study (except insofar as much has been made of it by others), and since they are of another type, it would serve to broaden understanding of the interesting variety of approaches, of which the general public is largely unaware.

    Let the study authors or others describe more fully in an informal setting, not only “by the scientifically correct way”, how their study matters, notwithstanding any valid criticism by DL et al.
    …………….
    Frankly, I think DL is being misunderstood. I also see why he did what he did. There may be trouble expressing with subtlety in English. I very much would like to see an extended discussion by scholars and learned lay in public using this study and others as examples. It should not be hidden in a sci. journal, that is for a diff. type of discussion. I do not think DL is working for anyone, he is calling it as he sees it in his kind of way. His way may seem brusque to some, and his public health judgement very wrong, but the choice to comment re the possible funding wastage — this is very important for the public to see and assess!: should we as he says be insistent on only the latest equipment, for example? — and the possibly hasty or exaggerated use in advocacy of such a study, these for example are important public policy issues, not straight scientific ones. That is why I’d like to see this go further, if certain participants can get unruffled.

  33. Biron claims that I blame “governnent/industy” for a low quality study.

    (a) I did not do that – I wrote that there was inadequate funding for good studies (into say brain proteomics re. mobile phone radiation and ELF fields) so it was left for people with little or no funding to do their best, and

    (b) Biron, once again, equates “government and industry” rather than “government and the general public” who voted them into power. Why does he keep doing this? It suggest to me that he thinks the industry lobby is effectively controlling publicly elected governments. I have never claimed this but maybe he knows that it does.

    (c) Biron calls the study “invalid” but he does not show how or why. It has significant shortcomings, yes, but I see no evidence that it is “invalid”. Their press release was rather too strong for the quality of evidence that they presented, but the paper passed proper peer review in a reasonable journal. Who is Biron to say that it is invalid. Has he studied proteomics professionally? Maybe he has and he can tell us what his qualifications and experience are that enable him to make such a public judgement call.

    (d) He asks if Powerwatch will comment frankly on the paper and yes, we do intend to. We do list, without bias, both positive and negative studies in our regular “science updates”. Did Biron comment on the Danish Cohort study third episode published in the BMJ online last November – if so I can’t find his comments. The good cop / bad cop thing works both ways. Just as we (Powerwatch) should criticise poor studies, Biron should also do this. The recent Danish Cohort update, despite the status of some of the authors, was absolutely crap and the two letters published in the print version of the BMJ (mine was one of them) set out the reasons. As it supported the idea that mobile phones do not cause brain tumours, Biron seems to have conveniently ignored it – despite the large number of rapid response criticisms from others on the BMJ website.

    (e) I did not “industry finger point” in my earlier response. I “government finger pointed”. However, Biron keeps joining industry to my government comment for reasons best known to himself – he has not shared those. My comment is based on trying to work with both the UK Government (at a high Department of Health and HPA level) for about 15 years and, more recently, at the EC level. I have been in numerous Chatham House rules meetings over the years regarding EMF/RF health effects. I have a good idea what goes on, including beghind the scenes.

    It is Biron, not me, who keeps associating the industry with Government funding decisions. Of course Governments do not want the wireless industry rocked – taxes (including income tax and VAT) on mobile phone calls and industry profits now total of £20bn every year. It has long overtaken revenue from people smoking. A 0.1% take of this tax-revenue each year would provide about £20M per year in the UK alone for health effects related research – more that has been spent in the UK on this in total up to now. However, the long-term health of the general public is important and I repeat my claim that current governmental funding into decent good quality science regarding mobile phone use and long-term health is woefully inadeqaute. Interphone ceased collecting data in 2004 and did not report until 2010 and still has not fully reported. 2004-2010 was a period when no further data was being systematically collected. That make a big guesswork hole in the data.

    The COMOS cohort study does not have enough participants to have adequate resolving power and can’t, anyway, report sensibly on cancers for many years yet. The exposure data will not be complete for the cohort – industry from some of the countries are not allowed to report their usage data to the study – by governmental private privacy regulations in those countries. That (I am assuming) is not an industry-caused fault. One major problem is that most governments have very few scientists and virtually no engineers among their elected representatives. That is not the industry’s fault, either.

    If there are long-term health problems (and I do accept that there is a possibility that there are not, although I believe that some are likely) then the future collapse of a $300bn annual turnover industry would completely break the world’s economic systems. It would be much better to sensibly and professionally mange the process now and, for example, limit children’s use of the technology – at least by providing better advice. The current UK government’s advice is that children and young people should minimise their use of mobile phones and restrict it to essential calls, Then they should preferably use a hands-free headset and/or use texting. That seems reasonably in line the the EC position on interpreting the Precautionary Principle. The industry is still saying “all is safe” and “there is no reasons to restrict a child’s use of a mobile phone”. For everyone’s sake, I hope their judgement call turns out to be right in the long-term.

    In the meantime, Biron, please get off your soapbox. In my opinion, you are doing yourself and the wireless industry no favours.

  34. Deborah, I have no answer to your question why the technology was put in common use without proper testing. I do not know.

  35. Dariusz, to your comment: “Well, I think that good scientific evidence is required before insisting on any kind of action. For now, we do not have such reliable science. ”

    I would say, if we really do not have reliable science, it is most unfortunate that this technology was permitted to proliferate, more or less unregulated beyond what might cause a 1 degree Celsius increase– before we had such science. One has to wonder why this sort of action –the mass-marketing of poorly understood microwave emitting devices–was not the one that was delayed until the science was more definitive. I suspect that will take decades. It just boggles my mind that “reliable: science isn’t there–isn’t required– to ensure safety before mass-marketing occurs. There are certainly plenty of studies going back decades indicative of harm. This seems unbelievably fool-hardy and criminally negligent on the part of industry and government. Most people assume anything they can buy without a prescription is safe. And the science is certainly not there to back-up that assumption. For this reason, the public is deceived and betrayed by government. They and their children will be the evidence we are all waiting for while nothing is done.

  36. So would it be more accurate to blame the lack of funding on the fear of disruption to the wireless industry? The main point is the appearance of blame on government/industry for this low quality study.

    My primary concern is that we have an invalid study that has been irresponsibly fed to the followers of many anti-wireless blogs and websites according to an internet search. FYI — my search did NOT have a hit with Powerwatch and it I assume it was NOT posted there.

    My question is does Powerwatch wish to expose all bad science or only that which (again in my opinion) promotes the narrative of government/industry interference.

    Will you publicize this study — and you can see that it has made the rounds — as an example of bad research?

  37. Its’ amazing how a discussion that is hard to prove, because of the lack of funding from either side to say “yes” or “no”. And sadly, there are so many people throughout the world suffering, because of greed. It was a known fact in the 1910’s that asbestos was a killer, and further confirmed in the 1930’s. But, like all the non-alarmists who may have posted on this article are making all the same sniggering that any form of EMR or EMF is l harmless until proven differently. We can ask ourselves how SAFE is SAFE, and I can say from my many years working in the asbestos, smoking, and in the communications field amongst the most dangerous transmitters and electronic equipment known to man. We know all know that asbestos is banned, and passive smoking is also banned in most countries of the world.

    In Sweden the health problems are to be caused by radio frequency emissions from electronic and power sources. Many of my mates have died from all forms of cancer that worked in the electronic field, and I’ve worked in areas where you didn’t even need to turn the fluro-lights ON, because the EMR was sufficient to run them.

    I suffer in this modern world of electronic communications; I suffer more than most who are hypersensitive. You see I worked in the Army, and all the metal in my body is an antenna, the same as all the amalgam fillings in our mouth, including dental caps that are mounted on metal plates.

    Where has science gone as far as electrosis is concerned, I know it, and so does all other people know it if you any type of electronic or electrical forces, cutting across any form of element, with moisture will form a form of electrosis. This accounts for all those people who suffer with a metallic taste in their mouth.

    Yes, CFS, ME, FMS, BMS, and IBS are all illnesses caused by EMR and EMF.

    So, what and who care. Some high-flying, sniggering, non-alarmist would offer me a chance to prove what I say, and put me in a room, and turn ON and OFF some electronic equipment and expect me to respond like an ON/OFF switch for power, but not take into any consideration that the dangers of all of this stuff is long-term and prolonged.

    Regards

  38. Biron – please re-read my posting.

    I absolutely did not blame industry and I challenge you to quote from my posting to show where I said that.

    I complained about the lack of decent funding from Governments and especially the EC and the UK which are areas that I know about. I gather US funding for this hardly exists now. When the UK Stewart report came out, in May 2000, the Mobile Operators Association expected the UK Government to announce something like a £40M research budget 50:50 split between the industry and UK taxpayer and the industry had internally agreed that they would go up to this (even though they had recently over-paid about £20bn for 3G licences). So what does the UK Government announce? £7.2M, a mere £3.6M each from industry and taxpayer. In my post I was not complaining about industry funding – that is an internal reading bias in Biron’s mind – unless, of course, he has inside knowledge that industry lobbying is limiting Governmental spends in this area. I certainly was not saying that. I wrote: “In my opinion there is a definite background effort by people who control European funding not to fund good studies” – is Biron’s response indicative that the wireless industry are “the people who control European funding”? I certainly hope that is not the case.

  39. Someone from Powerwatch asked me why I distrusted the site.

    The post above says it all. We have what appears to be a severely flawed study and a principal of Powerwatch basically blames it on industry’s lack of funding.

    Of course, if industry funded the study — and it were not conclusive — then some other anti-wireless advocacy group would pillory it as another industry-funded study that showed no effect.

    Please — many anti-wireless groups have trumpeted this apparently flawed study. It’s time for some self-discipline, not industry finger-pointing.

  40. The important thing is to try to be unbiased, as much as humanly possible, and not to try to “have it both ways” = criticize studies that do not fit certain idea but not criticize those that fit the idea.
    It is necessary to criticize and point out shortcomings of studies independently of whether they support or are against certain idea. The good science should be the only quality considered.
    I am trying to do it in this blog and in my column in TWTC. I say that I am trying because, I am also only human… and under “pressure” from both sides 😉

  41. Alasdair,
    Yes, it is possible that they were aware of the shortcomings. However, if they did not have funds to execute all needed experiments then they should not substitute for the missing information with unsubstantiated speculation.
    Without it the study would be important. They have shown changes in protein expression in brain of the mice exposed to cell /DECT phone radiation. The number of the affected proteins was higher than the number of the expected false positives. This info alone is important. There was no need to go into speculations about pathways and mechanisms using unconfirmed protein names.
    As published, because of the overinterpretation of the data, this study will be considered as a “failure” and the message about effect on protein expression will be either lost or srtongly “diminished” in its importance.
    If the authors published a short study focused on protein expresion change alone, their message would be strong and could be used as support for further research funding. As it is published now, the signals are “mixed”…
    Great pity…

  42. deever,
    First of all, there are no perfect studies. I do not intend to discuss all published studies. I discuss only selected studies that, for some reason, got more attention and publicity. The aim of my writings is to show to lay person readers that not everything what is said in the media about the importance of some studies is correct. Not only researchers may overinterpret their findings. Often media overinterpretes what researchers say.

  43. Professor:

    This is a turning point. It is the first instance that I have seen where someone of your caliber and independence has asked for a withdrawal of a widely circulated anti-wireless study. The paper is plastered over many anti-EMF advocacy sites where it delivers that very alarming and invalid message (I am not surprised).

    If we can “out” the really bad, unscientific anti-EMF sites perhaps we can have some serious discussion.

    Graham:

    Can we expect Powerwatch to publish the critical errors in this study as prominently as it does for the Danish Cell Phone study?

  44. I suspect that the authors were aware of many of the shortcomings but did not have the budget or the equipment to do better. However they wanted to stimulate people who do (all EC Governments, people like the Finnish Government / STUK, UK HPA, Dept. Health, etc) to fund better studies. At present all these Governments and official bodies say “no consistent evidence” therefore no more precaution other than ICNIRP is necessary or words to that effect – of course there isn’t better evidence if the funding isn’t there for better work. How do you kick-start that funding process? In my opinion there is a definite background effort by people who control European funding not to fund good studies – and allow those that they do fund to get away with absolutely poor protocols and methodolgy – like Interphone and the recent CEFALO study and the ridiculous recent re-hash of the Danish so-called cohort study that the BMJ somehow agreed to publish (probably because of the international status of some of the authors). That Interphone ignored DECT cordless exposure and got away with that is just incredible. I have a (Chatham House rules) 2011 EC committee Minutes that states “Neither the EU nor its Member States or the European Public can afford to see these developments [mainly in the wireless industry] jeopardized by actual or perceived health concerns related to EMF.” Hmmm. “acual or perceived” – does that mean EMF friendly fire collateral damge to people is acceptable as long as it is not on too large a scale? This is not acceptable to many of us.

  45. Good of you to take the time, after my suggestion at your Times column, to exercise your expertise in its undisputed domain, & although it would be interesting to see some further public discussion among scholars here around this study you criticize, how about a few others from the very same journal batch of new studies, this could be the best use of your abilities as public service (as opposed to e.g. venturing public policy) in blogging & column writing:
    ……………….
    “The influence of microwave radiation from cellular phone on fetal rat brain” (Jing et al)

    a few random excerpts:

    “to evaluate the intensity of oxidative stress and the level of neurotransmitters in the brains of fetal rats chronically exposed to cellular phones”

    “we concluded that receiving a certain period of microwave radiation from cellular phones during pregnancy has certain harm on fetal rat brains. ”

    “demonstrated that long time electromagnetic radiation
    emitted by cellular phone to pregnant rats could bring about oxidative damage bio-chemically by decreasing the activities of SOD and GSH-Px as well as increasing the content of MDA in brain tissue of fetal rats. Secondly, the electromagnetic radiation exposure to pregnant rats as above could also cause the change of monoamine
    neurotransmitter levels in fetal rat brain. ”

    “result suggests that a certain dose of intensity microwave
    radiation can induce brain damage to fetal rats by decreasing the activity of antioxidant enzymes and increasing levels of lipid peroxidation. The similar findings were presented by […]”

    “results indicated that fetal rats exposed to high intensity of mobilephone radiation would cause the neurotransmitter metabolic disorders”
    ……………………

    “GSM 900 MHz radiation inhibits ants’ association between food sites and encountered cues ” (Cammaerts et al)

    abstract only:
    “The kinetics of the acquisition and loss of the use of olfactory and visual cues were previously obtained in six experimental colonies of the ant Myrmica sabuleti meinert 1861, under normal conditions. In the present work, the same experiments were conducted on six other naive
    identical colonies of M. sabuleti, under electromagnetic radiation similar to those surrounding GSM and communication masts. In this situation, no association between food and either olfactory or visual
    cues occurred. After a recovery period, the ants were able to make such an association but never reached the expected score. Such ants having acquired a weaker olfactory or visual score and still undergoing olfactory or visual training were again submitted to electromagnetic waves. Not only did they lose all that they had
    memorized, but also they lost it in a few hours instead of in a few days (as under normal conditions when no longer trained). They kept no visual memory at all (instead of keeping 10% of it as they normally do). The impact of GSM 900 MHz radiation was greater on the visual
    memory than on the olfactory one. These communication waves may have such a disastrous impact on a wide range of insects using olfactory and/or visual memory, i.e., on bees. ”
    ………………………
    “GSM 900 MHz microwave radiation affects embryo development of Japanese quails ” (Tsybulin et al)

    random quote:
    “The appreciable effect of low intensity MW of GSM
    900 MHz on quail embryo development is important as an indicator of non-thermal biological effects of MW regardless of a direction of influence being stimulatory or adverse. ”
    ………………………
    What do you say?

  46. According to me as a scientist and a Doctor of Joseph Fourrier University in the field of Electromagnetism and microwaves, we knew enough to stop using this wireless technologies&microwave ovens in our towns. I advice my govermnent and people of my country to stop using this wireless technology&microwave ovens. Each country can take his own laws against the wireless industry to protect its population.
    April 13, 2011. Swanson and colleagues from the International Labour Office (Geneva, Switzerland) and the Bureau of Occupational Safety and Health, Public Health Services (Cincinnati, Ohio) reviewed guidelines for microwave radiation and published their review in the American Industrial Hygiene Association Journal, Vol. 31: 623-629 (1970). Click here to download a pdf of this article.

    Below is some information from this article. My comments appear in square brackets. To convert from mW/cm2 to microW/cm2 multiple by 1000.

    United States

    1. From 1940s to 1970s the use of microwave emitting equipment had increased considerably.

    2. In the United States radio frequencies (RF) from 10 to 10,000 MHz were classified as microwave radiation, while in Europe the range was from 300 to 300,000 MHz. [NOTE: We now use the European range to delineate the microwave part of the radio frequency spectrum.]

    3. By 1970, scientists recognized that parts of the body that are unable to dissipate heat are the most vulnerable to microwave radiation. This includes the lens of the eye (cataracts) and the reproductive organs (sterility or degenerative changes).

    4. Depth of penetration of radiation into tissue is a function of frequency with greater penetration at lower frequencies.

    5. In the United States the first guidelines were established during the Tri-Service conference, held in 1957. Below is a quote about the guidelines:

    It was the opinion of those participating in the Conference that there were not sufficient data to determine safe exposure levels for each frequency, or ranges of frequencies, within the microwave region; therefore, a level of 10 mW/cm2 [10,000 microW/cm2] was selected for all frequencies. The U.S. Air Force, in adopting this exposure level in May 1958, applied it to the frequency range of 300 to 30,000 MHz and established it as a maximum permissible exposure level, which could not be exceeded. The only factor considered in this criterion is the power density level. Such factors as time of exposure, ambient environmental temperatures that could have an increased or decreased effect on the body’s thermal response, the frequency of the microwave energy, effects of multifrequency exposures, differing sensitivity of various body organs, and effect of air currents on cooling the body are not considered, although they are all recognized as factors that might affect biological response.

    [NOTE: It was clear in 1970 that the US guidelines were somewhat arbitrary, were based on thermal effects only, and did not include other factors that influence biological and health consequences. This guideline has since been lowered from 10 to 1 mW/cm2 but is still 100 to 1000 times higher than guidelines in other countries.]

    UK, West Germany, France and Netherlands

    6. Guidelines in the UK and in West Germany allowed citizens to be exposed to 10 mW/cm2 (same as in U.S).

    7. In France only military personnel during working hours were allowed to be exposed to 10 mW/cm2. In rest areas and in public areas the guidelines were 1 mW/cm2.

    8. In the Netherlands the guidelines were at 1 mW/cm2.

    Poland, USSR, Czechoslovakia

    9. Guidelines in the eastern European Block countries were much more protective than those in western countries.

    Poland

    10. Polish guidelines, established in 1961 and 1963, were as follows:

    10 microW/cm2 [0.01 mW/cm2] – no limitation for time of work or sojourn in this field.
    10 and 100 microW/cm2 [0.01 and 0.1 mW/cm2]- cumulative time of work or sojourn not to exceed 2 hours in every 24 hours
    100 and 1000 microW/cm2 [0.1 and 1 mW/cm2]- cumulative time of work or sojourn not to exceed 20 minutes in 24 hours.
    11. The Polish regulation requires an annual medical examination for exposed workers including neurological and ophthalmological examinations; safe placement of microwave generating installations; protective screening; personnel protection; site surveillance; and safety education.

    12. The Polish regulation forbids work with microwave radiation for young people (age not provided), pregnant women, and other people suffering from certain diseases, which are listed in the regulation.

    USSR

    13. The USSR standards were based on time of exposure as follows:

    10 microW/cm2 [0.01 mW/cm2] for a working day
    100 microW/cm2 [0.1 mW/cm2] for 2 hours daily
    1000 microW/cm2 [1 mW/cm2] for 15 minutes daily [so at 1000 microW/cm2 the Soviets could be exposed for only 15 minutes, the Poles for only 20 minutes but the Americans could be exposed for 24 hours each day!
    14. The U.S.S.R. is also one of the first to propose exposure standards for intermediate-frequency electromagnetic radiation [dirty electricity], which heretofore had been considered as having no effect on the human body. These levels are:

    Medium wave (100 kHz – 3 MHz) – 20 volts/ meter [29 microW/cm2]
    Short wave (3 MHz- 30 MHz)- 5 volts/ meter [1.8 microW/cm2]
    Ultra short wave (30 MHz- 300 MHz)- 5 volts/ meter [1.8 microW/cm2]
    [NOTE: The WHO has recently recognized the importance of intermediate frequencies (IF) and the information they provide is severely limited].

    15. Medical examinations are regulated in the Soviet Union for persons exposed to electromagnetic radiation. Medical counter indications are enforced so that workers are not allowed to be exposed to microwave radiation if specified diseases exist. Heavy emphasis is placed on blood disorders, neurological disturbances, and chronic eye diseases.

    16. Preventive measures of an engineering nature are used by Soviet health and epidemiological centers to ensure compliance with their health regulations. Decreasing the amount of radiated energy, reflective and absorptive screening, and personnel protection measures are widely used for personnel operating microwave equipment.

    Czechoslovakia, 1965, above 300 MHz:

    17. The following values are considered for the general population and other workers not employed in generation of electromagnetic energy as tolerable doses of radiation not to be exceeded at the person’s location during one calendar day :

    for continuous generation in the microwave frequencies- value = 60 where the energy is expressed in microwatts per square centimeter and the time in hours [(microW/cm2) X t (hours) < 60 ; therefore twenty-four hours exposure time corresponds to an average energy flow of 2.5 microW/cm2].
    for pulsed generation in the microwave frequencies- value = 24 where the energy is expressed in microwatts per square centimeter and the time in hours [(microW/cm2) X t(hours) < 24; therefore twenty- four hours exposure corresponds to an average pulsed energy flow of 1 microW/cm2].
    18. The final point that is worth noting is the authors’ recommendation that “in applying the concept of a time-weighted exposure the health specialist must consider how far the dose- time relationship can be extrapolated.”

    Extrapolation of the dose-time relationship.

    Both cell phones and WiFi routers use pulsed microwave radiation and it is well known that pulsed microwave radiation is more harmful than continuous wave radiation. If we apply the Czech time-weighted concept for pulsed radiation we get the following (see last four rows in table 1). These values begin to approach the Salzburg recommended guidelines for outdoor (0.1 microW/cm2) and indoor (0.01 microW/cm2) exposure.

    Table 1. Comparison of time-weight exposure guidelines in selected countries.

  47. Ahouassa, I beg to differ in my opinion about the certainty of health risks. We know something but not enough to be sure. We know that “somewhere bell is tolling but we do not know in which church”.

  48. You answer as if this trouble is a new discovery.
    I agree with Mr. G, the governor of Florida has recognized in 2008 the illness called Electrosensitivity that means they know that these new wireless technologies are dangerous for our health. It is not a recent news, it is a not a new discovery. Scientists know the danger of microwave radiation a long time ago. But the wireless industry want us to believe that is a new problem.

    The wireless industry let people suffer. Any way we are 99% brains against 1% brains. We will win.

    http://www.magdahavas.com/wordpress/wp-content/uploads/2011/04/AMERICAN-INDUSTRIAL-HYGIENE-ASSOCIATION-JOURNAL-A-Review-of-International-Microwave-Exposure-Gu.pdf

    United States document from 1970.

  49. Erja, yes, our approach years back (2002-2006) was similar. Manual matching of protein spots. However, already then the 2D-DIGE was considered a method of choice. We did not use it because we did not have equipment costin 100.000euros. Once we got funds we purchased it and we are using it now. Still then (2002-2006) it was possible to publish articles with such methodology in Proteomics – the best European journal in this area of research. Now it is not anymore possible. 2D-DIGE is the must. If someone has no access to such equipment should think twice before going into 2D-proteomics research.
    In the Greek study, however, the important missing information is the lack of confirmation experiments that would show which of the protein expression changes are real and which false.

  50. You wrote “Analysis of changes in protein expression was performed using 2D-electrophoresis followed by detection of proteins by coomassie blue staining. Thereafter, the images of stained gels were analyzed using the PDQuest software. This is already obsolete approach”…etc. How does this approach differ from those methods used in your own earlier studies ?

  51. Fascinating reading Dariusz. Most of my competence is in statistical analysis and number crunching data, so the background of biological experimental methodologies is very useful information to me 🙂

    Best Regards,
    – Graham (Powerwatch)

  52. Well, I think that good scientific evidence is required before insisting on any kind of action. For now, we do not have such reliable science. The only for of action that can be advised now is the precaution that can be implemented by anyone concerned.

  53. The governments will act if this issue rallies all people in the world.
    Don’t forget that we are 99% against 1%.

  54. Anyone with ES / ElectroSensitivity could have told them this in the first place. But will governments act? I dont think so, yet? Like the Tobacco industry 30 years ago, to many back handers, and corruption on the highest level. Money talks, health takes second place.

    Keep mobile / wifi / dec phone by your head at night you wake up between 4-4.30m remove it you sleep. Its not magic, its radiation. But the dumb wireless industry let people suffer.

  55. It is possible to find more information or data from this study. This study is interesting but they should also study the effects of cell phone radiation and DECT phone radiation on other part of the mouse’s body. For example the effect of radiation on the blood cells. The mouse has the size of a cell phone so all its body is strongly affected by the radiation and not only its brain.
    I mean this study is not finished.

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