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Julio/Agosto 2009

Further analyses from Hardell’s group on mobile and cordless phone use and the risk of brain tumours.

The authors present further results of 2 case-control studies (1997-2003) on brain tumours and the use of mobile and cordless phones in Sweden. Ipsilateraluse was determined as >= 50% of use and contralateral use as < 50% of use. Results are presented for astrocytoma tumours and the highest risk for ipsilateral mobile phone use > 10 years, odds ratio (OR) =3.3, 95% confidence interval (CI) (2.0-5.4); for cordless phones =5.0 CI (2.3-11). For acoustic neuroma tumours, the highest risk for ipsilateral mobile phone use > 10 years, odds ratio (OR) =3.0, 95% CI (1.4-6.0); for cordless phones = 2.3 CI (0.6-8.8).

Hardell L, Carlberg M. (2009). Mobile phones, cordless phones and the risk of brain tumours. International Journal of Oncology. 35(1): 5-17.

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Low feasibility of cohort studies for occupational exposure to radiofrequency fields

The objective of the research was to look at the feasibility of starting a cohort study of occupational exposure to radiofrequency fields (RF) in Germany. The authors used criteria they developed such as exposure and exposure assessmentto assess if such a cohort would be feasible. A total of 20 occupational settings and a cohort of amateur radio operators were included in the feasibility assessment. With a system based on expert ratings, literature reviews, and developed criteria, 3 cohorts were identified as possible. Advantages and disadvantages of each cohort are presented. It was concluded that most of the occupational groups exposed to RF can’t have an occupational cohort study because exposed workers are too rare and exposure levels are only slightly higher than what the general public would be exposed in their general environment.

Breckenkamp J, Berg-Beckhoff G, Münster E, Schüz J, Schlehofer B, Wahrendorf J, Blettner M. Feasibility of a cohort study on health risks caused by occupational exposure to radiofrequency electromagnetic fields. Environ Health. May 29, 2009. Ahead of print.

For more see “Research – epidemiological – other studies – other occupations
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Radiofrequency field exposure in firefighters proposed by author as an explanation for some of the increased cancer risk seen in this population.

The latest reviews indicate that firefighters are at an increased risk of numerous cancers because they are exposed to a number of known carcinogens in combustion products. But, respiratory system cancers do not seem to be higher in firefighters compared to workers who inhale carcinogens. The list of cancers with elevated risk is also similar to the list for workers exposed to electromagnetic fields (EMF) and radiofrequency fields (RF). Because firefighters have increased exposure to RF from using two-way radios and radio transmitters, the author suggest that part of the increased cancer risk in these individuals is caused by RF exposure and could be preventable.

Milham S. Most cancer in firefighters is due to radio-frequency radiation exposure not inhaled carcinogens. Med Hypotheses. Ahead of print May 21, 2009.

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GSM and UMTS mobile phone base stations do not affect cognitive functions in humans.

Because previous studies of self-reported sensitive participants found inconsistent effects of mobile phone base stations on cognitive functions, the current study was designed to investigate whether 50 minutes exposure at 10 mW/m(2) to Global System for Mobile Communication (GSM) and Universal Mobile Telecommunications System (UMTS) base station signals would affect cognitive functions such as attention, memory, and physiological endpoints. A total of 44 self-reported sensitive and 44 control participants who completed numerous cognitive tests under 3 conditions; (1) exposed to GSM, (2) UMTS, and (3) sham-exposed under double-blind settings were included. Results indicate that cognitive functions and physiological measurements were not affected by exposure to either GSM or UMTS mobile phone base-station systems.

Eltiti S, Wallace D, Ridgewell A, Zougkou K, Russo R, Sepulveda F, Fox E. Short-term exposure to mobile phone base station signals does not affect cognitive functioning or physiological measures in individuals who report sensitivity to electromagnetic fields and controls.  Bioelectromagnetics. May 27, 2009. Ahead of print.

For more see “Research – clinical – cognitive function
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No regional cerebral blood flow effect of 3rd generation mobile phone in humans.

The objective of the study was to investigate the health effects of the 3rd generation 1,950 MHz mobile phone system on regional cerebral blood flow in humans. Participants were 9 male volunteers who were either exposed for 30 minutes to W-CDMA mobile phone system or sham-exposed. Regional cerebral blood flow was measured by scans taken before, during, and after the real or sham exposure. Results did not show any changes in cerebral blood flow in humans due to mobile phone W-CDMA exposure. The authors concluded that their study suggests that radiofrequency fields emitted by 3rd generation mobile phones are not altering regional cerebral blood flow in healthy male humans.

Mizuno Y, Moriguchi Y, Hikage T, Terao Y, Ohnishi T, Nojima T, Ugawa Y. Effects of W-CDMA 1950 MHz emitted by mobile phones on regional cerebral blood flow in humans. BioelectromagneticsMay 27, 2009. Ahead of print.

For more see “Research – clinical – cognitive function
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Mobile phones, base stations and cordless phones are the main sources of radiofrequency fields exposure in urban Switzerland.

The objective of the study was to assess the levels of exposure and different sources of radiofrequency fields (RF) in 166 volunteers in Switzerland. The participants wear a personal exposimeter for 1 week and kept a daily diary of all activities. Results indicate that mean weekly exposure to all RF sources was 0.13 mW/m(2) (0.22 V/m). Important sources of exposure were mobile phone base stations (32%), mobile phones (29%), and cordless phones (22.7%). Exposures were highest in trains (1.16mW/m(2)), airports (0.74mW/m(2)) and tramways or buses (0.36mW/m(2)). It was also higher during daytime (0.16mW/m(2)) than nighttime (0.08mW/m(2)). The authors concluded that RF exposure was considerably different between persons and locations but was consistent within persons.

Frei P, Mohler E, Neubauer G, Theis G, Bürgi A, Fröhlich J, Braun-Fahrländer C, Bolte J, Egger M, Röösli M. Temporal and spatial variability of personal exposure to radio frequency electromagnetic fields. Environ Res. May 22, 2009. Ahead of print.

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Mobile phone recall in adolescents is modestly accurate in Australia

The objective of the study was to validate the accuracy of self-reported mobile phone use in adolescents in Melbourne, Australia. A total of 59 adolescents participated in the validation study. Recall of mobile phone use was determined with a self-administered questionnaire and the validation was performed by using software modified phones recording the number and duration of calls. Results indicate that a small but significant rank correlation was found between self and validated number of voice calls (rho=0.3, P=0.04). For duration of calls, the correlation was lower (rho=0.1, P=0.37). The authors concluded that recall of mobile phone use by adolescents was modestly accurate and results of epidemiologic studies in such population should be interpreted with caution.

Inyang I, Benke G, Morrissey J, McKenzie R, Abramson M. How well do adolescents recall use of mobile telephones? Results of a validation study. BMC Med Res Methodol. Jun 12, 2009. Ahead of print.

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Mobile phone base station RF occupational exposure; peak and whole-body SAR compliance

The objective of the study was to evaluate occupational exposure to radiofrequency fields (RF) from mobile phone base stations by finite-difference time-domainsimulations. Both peak spatial average specific absorption rate (SAR) and whole-body SAR were assessed in 3 human models at distances between 0.5 and 4 metres of functional base stations. Results indicate that whole-body absorption usually determines the maximum permissible antenna output power and local exposure is subject to various effects that changes among individuals. Because peak spatial average SAR is more restrictive for short antenna types, the authors suggest that compliance must be determined for both peak and whole-body SAR.

Gosselin MC, Christ A, KÃœhn S, Kuster N. (2009). Dependence of the occupational exposure to mobile phone base stations on the properties of the antenna and the human body. Electromagnetic Compatibility, IEEE Transactions on. 51(2):227-235.

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Good reliability of mobile phone SAR measurements from different international laboratories.

The objective of the study was to do an international intercomparison of 17 laboratories in 11 countries for specific absorption rate (SAR) of 2 different mobile phones. The SAR measurements were made using small electric field probes placed in the head phantoms. Each laboratory measured 1 and 10 g maximum SARs for each phone at both frequencies of 900 and 1800 MHz, for the left and right cheeks, and left and right tilt positions relative to the phantom. Examination of the data shows that results are generally quite consistent among the 17 laboratories. The authors concluded, that overall, the results of the intercomparison study support the reliability of the SAR measurement methodology currently used.

Davis CC, Balzano Q. (2009). The International Intercomparison of SAR Measurements on Cellular Telephones. Electromagnetic Compatibility, IEEE Transactions on. 51(2):210-216.

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Measurement of changes in temperature due to RF exposure using non-contact method fluorescent dye in biological samples.

The objective of the study was to examine the changes in temperature due to radiofrequency fields (RF) in small biological samples using a non-contact temperature-dependent fluorescent dye, Rhodamine B. The non-contact method could provide 2 and 3 dimensional images and was calibrated against real-time temperature changes from fiber optic probes. The authors estimated that SARfrom absorbed power measurements were higher than those estimated from changes in temperature rise (1 minute intervals) possibly because this interval is too long to assess accurate initial temperature rise following RF exposure.

Yuen Y. Chen, Andrew W. Wood. Application of a temperature-dependent fluorescent dye (Rhodamine B) to the measurement of radiofrequency radiation-induced temperature changes in biological samples. Bioelectromagnetics. June 8, 2009. Ahead of print.

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Procedure using formulae to generate SAR compliance boundaries for mobile phone base station antennas.

The authors proposed a new procedure for compliance to mobile phone base station antennas exposure. Formulae are used to measure specific absorption rate (SAR) for common base station antennas and parameters such as frequency, transmitted power, antenna dimensions, directivity and half-power beamwidths are required. The authors demonstrate how compliance boundaries are generated.

Thors B, Hansson B, Törnevik C. The generation of simple compliance boundaries for mobile communication base station antennas using formulae for SAR estimation. Phys Med Biol. Jun 17, 2009. Ahead of print. 54(13):4243-4256.

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Synergistic effects of RF and gamma-rays on cellular functions.

The objective of the study was to investigate the biological effects and interactions between 900 MHz radiofrequency fields (RF) and gamma-rays on SHG44 cells. Results of the experiment indicate that RF exposure increased gamma-ray damage to SHG44 cells. RF cell exposure augmented the decrease in cell proliferation induced by gamma-ray irradiation and also the rate of apoptosis; RF and gamma-ray exposure produced a synergistic effect by producing a stress response. The authors concluded that the results show that RF exposure strengthened adverse effects of gamma-rays on cellular functions.

Cao Y, Zhang W, Lu MX, Xu Q, Meng QQ, Nie JH, Tong J. (2009). 900-MHz microwave radiation enhances gamma-ray adverse effects on SHG44 cells. J Toxicol Environ Health A. 72(11): 727-32.

For more see “Research – laboratory – cancer studies
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No direct DNA damage or synergistic effects of 1800 MHz RF with X-rays on human leukocytes.

The objective of the study was to assess the effect of 1800 MHz radiofrequency field (RF) radiation (SAR=2W/kg) on DNA repair in human leukocytesexposed to X-rays. Four healthy donors provided leukocytes which were intermittently exposed to RF during 24 hours followed by irradiation with X-rays. The results indicate that the DNA repair speeds of human leukocytes after being exposed to X-ray varied among participants and the intermittent exposures of 1800 MHz RF did not directly produce DNA damage on human leukocytes.

Zhijian C, Xiaoxue L, Yezhen L, Deqiang L, Shijie C, Lifen J, Jianlin L, Jiliang H. Influence of 1.8-GHz (GSM) radiofrequency radiation (RFR) on DNA damage and repair induced by X-rays in human leukocytes in vitro. Mutat Res. Jun 3, 2009. Ahead of print.

For more see “Research – laboratory – cancer studies
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Preliminary results suggest that an adaptive response can be induced in cells exposed to 900 MHz radiofrequency radiation.

The objective of the study was to investigate the adaptive response to radiofrequency fields (RF) in peripheral blood lymphocytes in 5 human volunteers. Cells were exposed to 900 MHz RF (SAR=10W/kg) for a period of 20 hours followed by a single genotoxic dose of mitomycin at 48 hours. Frequency of micronuclei in the cells was examined to determine the adaptive response. Results indicate that adaptive response is induced in cells exposed to RF radiation in 4 of the 5 volunteers. The authors concluded that overall their results indicated there was heterogeneity in the induction of an adaptive response.

Sannino A, Sarti M, Reddy SB, Prihoda TJ, Vijayalaxmi and Scarfì MR. (2009). Induction of Adaptive Response in Human Blood Lymphocytes Exposed to Radiofrequency Radiation. Radiat. Res. 171, 735–742.

For more see “Research – laboratory – cancer studies
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No genotoxic and cytotoxic effects (DNA damage) from RF radiation in human dermal fibroblasts.

The objective of the study was to investigate DNA damage in human dermal fibroblasts from a healthy subject and from one with Turner's syndrome who were both exposed for 24 hours to GSM900 MHz radiofrequency fields (RF) at a SAR of 1W/kg. The RF exposure was done alone or in combination with an environmental mutagen and carcinogen. Results indicated that no genotoxic and cytotoxic effects were found from RF radiation alone. No enhancement of the mutagen/carcinogen-induced DNA damage was also noted in the fibroblasts exposed to RF radiation.

Sannino A, Di Costanzo G, Brescia F, Sarti M, Zeni O, Juutilainen J, Scarfì MR. (2009). Human Fibroblasts and 900 MHz Radiofrequency Radiation: Evaluation of DNA Damage after Exposure and Co-exposure to 3-Chloro-4-(dichloromethyl)-5-Hydroxy-2(5h)-furanone (MX). Radiat. Res. 171, 743–751.

For more see “Research – laboratory – cancer studies
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Confirmation study does not prove 915 MHz radiofrequency field affects integrity of blood-brain-barrier in rats.

A confirmation study was designed to evaluate whether the blood-brain-barrier (BBB) was altered in rats exposed to 915 MHz radiofrequency fields (RF). Rats were exposed for 30 minutes to either continuous-wave or modulated (16 or 217 Hz) 915 MHz RF at whole-body specific absorption rates (SARs) of 0.0018–20 W/kg. Results indicate that no significant increase in albumin extravasation, a measure of the integrity of the BBB, in any of the exposed animals compared to the sham-exposed or home cage controlanimals.

McQuade JM, Merritt JH, Miller SA, Scholin T, Cook MC, Salazar A, Rahimi OB, Murphy MR, Mason PA. (2009). Radiofrequency-Radiation Exposure Does Not Induce Detectable Leakage of Albumin Across the Blood-Brain Barrier. Radiat. Res. 171, 615–621.

For more see “Research – laboratory – brain functions
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No effect of mobile phone radiofrequency fields on the developing nervous system in pregnant mice.

The objective of the present study was to investigate the effects of exposure to mobile phone radiofrequency fields (RF) on the developing mouse nervous system (hippocampus). Mice were categorized as control group and mobile phone exposed group. The pregnant animals were exposed to RF emitted from mobile phones. Results indicate that no significant difference in pyramidal cell number of hippocampus (measure of the developing nervous system) was found between the control and the exposed group. The authors concluded that more research is needed because of the widespread use of mobile phones and the high exposure to the developing brain.

Rağbetli MC, Aydinlioğlu A, Koyun N, Rağbetli C, Karayel M. (2009). Effect of prenatal exposure to mobile phone on pyramidal cell numbers in the mouse hippocampus: a stereological study. Int J Neurosci. 119(7):1031-1041.

For more see “Research – laboratory – brain functions
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Study shows GSM 900 MHz RF exposure did not change important parameters of neural cells of in vitro models.

The objective of the study was to test viability, proliferation, and vulnerability of neural cells, following continuous radiofrequency fields (RF) exposure to GSM modulated 900 MHz signal (SAR=1W/kg) for a maximum duration of 144 hours in 2 cellular systems. Results indicate that RF exposure did not produce any changes in viability and proliferation rate of the cholinergic cells or viability of cortical neurons. The authors suggest that only under certain conditions do exposure to GSM 900 MHz signal act as a co-stressor for oxidative damage of neural cells.

Del Vecchio G, Giuliani A, Fernandez M, Mesirca P, Bersani F, Pinto R, Ardoino L, Lovisolo GA, Giardino L, Calzaà L. Effect of radiofrequency electromagnetic field exposure on in vitro models of neurodegenerative disease. Bioelectromagnetics. May 28, 2009. Ahead of print.

For more see “Research – laboratory – brain function
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UMTS 1,950 MHz RF did not affect cell viability or reactive oxygen species formation in Jurkat cells.

The objective of the study was to investigate whether radiofrequency field (RF) radiation induces oxidative stress in cultured mammalian cells when given alone or in combination with ferrous ions. The production of reactive oxygen species (ROS) was measured in human lymphoblastoid cells exposed to UMTS 1,950 MHz signal at SARof 0.5 and 2.0 W/kg for short (5-60 min) or long (24 hours) exposure periods. Results indicate that non-thermal RF exposures do not increase reactive oxygen species formation in any of the experimental conditions including cell viability in Jurkat cells exposed to RF for 24 hours. Results were similar for co-exposures (RF and ferrous ions). The authors concluded that exposures to UMTS 1,950 MHz RF did not affect cell viability or reactive oxygen species formation in Jurkat cells.

Brescia F, Sarti M, Massa R, Calabrese ML, Sannino A, Scarfì MR. Reactive oxygen species formation is not enhanced by exposure to UMTS 1950 MHz radiation and co-exposure to ferrous ions in Jurkat cells. Bioelectromagnetics. May 27, 2009. Ahead of print.

For more see “Research – laboratory – other – free oxygen radicals
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Review of electromagnetic fields (EMFs) on the immune system.
 
The author reviews a number of papers on the effects of electromagnetic fields (EMFs) on the immune system. Based on his review, the author says that current public safety limits are inadequate to protect public health and that new public safety limits are needed.

Johansson O. Disturbance of the immune system by electromagnetic fields—A potentially underlying cause for cellular damage and tissue repair reduction which could lead to disease and impairment. Pathophysiology. April 23, 2009. Ahead of print.

For more see “Research – review papers – general
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Overview of the epidemiology of exposure to electromagnetic fields (EMF).

The authors present an overview which summarizes scientific data on exposure to electromagnetic fields (EMF) and health risks. The overview emphasizes studies of use of mobile phones and brain tumours and exposure to power lines and childhood leukaemia as well as sources of bias and errors in such epidemiologic studies.

Schuz J, Lagorio S, Bersani F. Electromagnetic fields and epidemiology: an overview inspired by the fourth course at the International School of Bioelectromagnetics. Bioelectromagnetics. May 28, 2009 Ahead of print.

For more see “Research – review papers – epidemiology
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Gee D. Late Lessons from Early Warnings: Towards realism and precaution with EMF? Pathophysiology. May 21, 2009. Ahead of print.

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