Feb 19, 2019

NZZ am Sonntag Asks "Can Mobile Phones Make You Sick?"

According to the results of the National Toxicology Program (NTP) study, cell phone radiation can cause cancer in rats. However, the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA), a division of the Department of Health and Human Services, claims that the findings cannot be extended to human exposures. This discrepancy is the focus of an article published in the Swiss newspaper "NZZ am Sonntag" of February 17, 2019.

Prof. Martin Röösli, an epidemiologist at the Swiss Tropical and Public Health Institute in Basel and Head of the Swiss Expert Group on Electromagnetic Fields and Non-Ionizing Radiation, is quoted in the article as believing that the NTP study results are scientifically relevant and important for formulation of health policy, but cautions that data from cancer registries do not indicate increased incidence of brain tumors in human populations despite the widespread use of mobile phones. Prof. Niels Kuster of the IT'IS Foundation, the developers of the exposure chambers used in the NTP study, points out that, had the NTP results appeared in the 1990s, the political implications might have been larger and led to more follow-up research projects. It is important to understand the mechanistic aspects of the findings, especially in view of emerging 5G technologies that operate at much higher frequencies and for which the scientific bases for risk assessment are largely non-existent.

The NZZ article (in German) can be accessed here.