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Lloyd Morgan's Column

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Cellphone Industry's Propaganda: Cellphones Cannot Possibly Cause Brain Tumors

This is a lead-in column for the main commentary on the interphone flaws that can be found here.

A recent news report headlined "Cell Phone Radiation Triggers Measurable Brain Cell Changes in Mere Minutes" was sent to me. It was an Israeli study showing damage to brain cells in as little as 10 minutes when the brain cells were exposed to cellphone radiation. The cellphone industry maintains that any cellular damage from exposure to cellphone radiation is impossible.

The cellphone industry maintains that while ionizing radiation (e.g., X-rays) does cause DNA damage, cellphones' non-ionizing radiation cannot cause cellular damage except when the power of microwave radiation is at a level to heat the body's cells. This view assumes the only possibility of cellular damage is due to heating. And, it assumes that the cause of any kind of cellular damage is already known. Such a view is fundamentally anti-scientific, but it makes a good sound bite.

Without a doubt, ionizing radiation causes cell damage. Yet what is not generally understood is that 85% of cell damage is indirect damage. Yes, 15% of ionizing radiation directly breaks DNA bounds. However, ionizing radiation also creates free radicals within the cell's cytoplasm. These free radicals, very close to DNA, cause 85% of the damage. Cellphone radiation has been shown to create free radicals and/or lengthen the lifetime of free radicals.

Safety guidelines, developed by industry, assume that health effects from the cellphone microwaves radiation can only occur when significant heating of body tissue occurs (as we see in the far more powerful microwave oven radiation used to cook food). This is blatantly wrong (i.e., it is a lie).

The single most convincing data this is a lie is the therapeutic use of non-thermal, non-ionizing radiation (non-thermal means there is no heating). Since the 1970s non-thermal, non-ionizing pulsed EMFs have been use to heal bone fractures. When a broken bone does not knit together after being in a cast for about 8-weeks, the standard therapy is to use pulsed EMFs. This therapy is very close to 100% effective.

The pulses were not randomly tried until something worked. They were designed to be resonant with bone cell processes. In essence these pulses stimulate bone cell growth. There is substantial literature explaining the mechanism at the cellular level.

We all know that UV light causes skin cancer. UV light is non-ionizing radiation. According to industry's spin machine, it is impossible for non-ionizing radiation to cause DNA damage. Dr. Doug Marsh at Yale Medical School has shown that UV light does cause DNA breaks because non-ionizing UV light has a quantum mechanical resonance with the DNA bonds.

The Israeli study showing brain cell damage is one of many studies that challenge the entire basis on which cellphone industry's presumption of safety has been based. There are many more studies of non-thermal, non-ionizing radiation that show damaging effects on cells. Often the cellphone industry's response to such data is to say it cannot be true because there is "no known mechanism" to explain this data.

In science data is gospel. "No know mechanism" is another sound bite created by industry to deny the validity of the data. While, data itself can be, and should be, challenged, if it meets the challenges, then science acknowledges the validity of the data.

An example of a data challenge is where the tolerance (accuracy) of the data is insufficient to justify reported findings. Another challenge is where there are unperceived contaminations that distorts the data (e.g., the earth's magnetic field was not considered). It is for this reason that exact replication of the experiment is expected. The goal of such replication experiments is to produce the same results as the original experiment. This too is part of the scientific gospel.

One of industry's deceits is to "improve" the experiment (which is not the same experiment at all) and this improved experiment does not replicate the original data. Are we surprised?

It is now clear: cellphone radiation causes brain tumors. Even the industry funded Interphone studies have found a risk of brain tumors. This risk has been consistently found when the cellphone has been used for 10 or more years and the tumor is on the same side of the head where the cellphone was held. Of the 4 published Interphone studies that report data for 10 or more years, all 4 have found a risk of brain tumors.

Studies, independent of cellphone industry funding, with 10 or more years of exposure time have consistently found higher risks of brain tumors than the Interphone studies have. Why higher risks? It is because the Interphone study protocol has at least 6 flaws, each of which results in an underestimation of brain tumor risk. Yet, in spite of the 6 design flaws that underestimate the risk of brain tumors, the Interphone studies still find a risk of brain tumors. Perhaps if these flaws did not exist they would find the same elevated risks as the industry independent studies have found? Or, could it be that the Interphone protocol was designed to not find any risk?