MMF, NHS UK, and Cancer Research UK are living in a ‘twilight zone’

updated on May 16th, 2014 at 17:00

It is amazing that educated people, for some unknown to me reasons, show complete disrespect for the general audiences and talk to them simply nonsense.

Recent French epidemiological study CERENAT has found that use of cell phone for 30 minutes per day for an extended period of years might lead to the increased risk of developing brain cancer. The same was found European project Interphone and the series of Lennart Hardell studies in Sweden.

Mobile Manufacturers Forum, National Health Services UK and the Cancer Research UK published immediately comments about the meaning of the French study.

I can understand the Mobile Manufacturers Forum because they mislead to protect their business, the same way as tobacco or asbestos industry did… but the National Health Services UK and the Cancer Research UK? Why?

The major finding of the French study, heralded by all three organizations was:

“…No statistically significant association was observed overall for those who used mobile phones regularly (defined as at least once a week for more than six months) compared to non-users….”

Regular user, according to the above links with “scientific” comments, is a person who uses a cell phone once per week for six months.

Who in their healthy mind would ever suspect that after making ca. 27 phone calls health problem might appear?

Definition of the regular user, whoever coined it in 2001, when the Interphone was being set up, made already then a ridiculous definition. Using it still now is totally wrong. Regular users, as defined by it, areextinct”. This definition might have been somewhat justified in 2001 when cell-phone use was expensive. However, now, in the era of booming free minutes, this is just a nonsense definition… Are they living in a “twilight zone”?

Of course it is useful to the industry, MMF, to demonstrate that the “regular use of cell phone does not cause cancer.” However, this borders with the scientific fraud committed on the lay persons’ audience. These comments-makers, MMF, NHS UK and Cancer Research UK, apparently assume that the twisted truth, repeated sufficiently frequently will ultimately become the truth.

Commentaries speak also about the “proof of no risk” provided by the Danish Cohort and by the Million Women Study. Using these studies as an evidence of “proof” shows that writers of the comments from MMF, NHS UK and Cancer Research UK either did not read these studies, or that they should go back to school. By way of design, the Danish Cohort and the Million Women Study are incapable of provide relevant conclusions. Using these studies as evidence proving no cancer risk also borders with scientific fraud, committed on unsuspecting lay audience.

All three commenting organizations referred also to the lack of correlation between cell phone use and cancer incidence. MMF quoted the CEO of the New South Wales Cancer Council in Australia, Dr Andrew Penman as saying:

Mobile phones have been widely used in Australia for nearly 20 years now. Contrary to concerns about mobile phones, we have seen absolutely no associated increase in brain cancer cases in Australia or overseas. Users should therefore, not unduly worry that their device will give them brain cancer.

Mr. Penman should remember that during the first 10 years, because of the high costs, people were not talking much on cell phones. People were not speaking for 30 minutes per day and every day. Mr. Penman should also remember that there is such a thing as cancer latency. The ten to twenty 10-20 years are a short period of time to develop brain cancer. Finally, brain cancer is a rare disease, less than 20 cases per 100.000 people and not every user is at risk  same as not every smoker develops lung cancer. So, the lack of the strong increase in brain cancer in the world, that would in a way follow the rapid increase in cell-phone use, is not surprising. Mr. Penman shows complete ignorance in the mater of cancer development…

The three studies, European Interphone, Swedish Hardell and French CERENAT, all show that the avid use of cell phone might be associated with the increased risk of brain cancer. They do not prove causality, because they are epidemiological studies. However, all three studies point in the same direction. This warning should not be disregarded because of the spin from the industry “experts,” protecting their own business.

Past mistakes done with tobacco or asbestos should be avoided. The lesson from the not so distant history should be learned, not dismissed by spin…

The time to act is now. The time to implement the Precautionary Principle is now.

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After publication of this blog, I got a message from one of the readers:

“…Dear Prof. Leszczynski, Just read your latest blog. What’s up with Cancer Research UK? It happens that Li Ka-Shing, the Chinese owner of 3G telecom “3”, Hutchison Whampoa conglomerate and long time sponsor gave Cancer Research UK a £50 million research centre in 2007. They simply call it the “Li Ka Shing Centre“….”

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