New Study Finds No Mobile Phone, Brain Cancer Link

Talking Phone

Credit: Dreamstime

Although the health effects of radiation from mobile phones has long been up for debate, a new study from Denmark found that cellphones do not increase the risk of cancerous brain tumors.

Following a 17-year study, a group of researchers from the Institute of Cancer Epidemiology in Copenhagen concluded that mobile phones do not raise the risk of brain cancer.

The study, which was published this week in the British Medical Journal, involved 358,403 Danish cellphone plan subscribers over a 17-year period and concluded that those with 13 years or more of mobile phone exposure faced the same cancer risk as non-subscribers. The study is the largest of its kind to date.

“There was no indication of dose-response relation either by years since first subscription for a mobile phone or by anatomical location of the tumor — that is, in regions of the brain closest to where the handset is usually held to the head,” the study stated.

However, the study comes on the heels of a report released by World Health Organization, which  found that mobile devices may increase chances of developing glioma, a type of brain cancer. [Read: Cellphones May Increase Risk of Brain Cancer]

In June, a group of 31 scientists from 14 countries attended the WHO/International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) in Lyon, France, and reviewed hundreds of scientific articles to discuss the possibility that these exposures might induce long-term health effects, in particular an increased risk of cancer.

Although the report did not claim cell phones cause cancer, the scientists called for more research to be done to draw further conclusions about the health effects.

Working Group Chairman Dr. Jonathan Samet, of the University of Southern California, previously said in a press release that “the evidence, while still accumulating, is strong enough to support a conclusion, which means that there could be some risk, and therefore we need to keep a close watch for a link between cellphones and cancer risk.”

The latest study stressed that the results are not conclusive and called for more research to be done on the topic:

“As a small to moderate increase in risk for subgroups of heavy users or after even longer induction periods than 10-15 years cannot be ruled out, however, further studies with large study populations, where the potential for misclassification of exposure and selection bias is minimized, are warranted,” the study in the British Medical Journal said.

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