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Innovation

Are mobile phones killing our grandchildren?

On last week's program we asked whether exposure to your mobile phone is increasing your risk of contracting cancer or having a brain tumour. The jury is out on that question, with the scientific community divided and no conclusive proof either way.
Written by Phil Dobbie, Contributor on

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On last week's program we asked whether exposure to your mobile phone is increasing your risk of contracting cancer or having a brain tumour. The jury is out on that question, with the scientific community divided and no conclusive proof either way.

Yet no proof has been translated as "no risk" in many quarters. The Australian Mobile Telecommunications Association (AMTA) admitted its terminology was misleading and corrected the wording on its website after last week's program.

AMTA has re-worded its website from saying there was "no public health risk" to now say "there is no established evidence of health effects".

This week we hear again from Lloyd Morgan, the retired electronics engineer, who has questioned the methods used by the multinational Interphone study, including selection bias, insufficient latency time, and the exclusion of children and young adults. In fact, some people were excluded from the study because they had a brain tumour and were too ill to be interviewed!

In Cellphones and Brain Tumors: 15 Reasons for Concern (PDF), he points to Interphone research that shows that using a mobile phone actually protects you from a brain tumour. Does that sound like a credible finding?

We also hear more from Olle Johansson, an associate professor at the Karolinska Institute in Stockholm. You'll recall that in last week's program he said that cancer and brain tumour might be the least of our worries. There could be other effects that are far more detrimental. The way he argues the case you have to seriously wonder whether he has a point.

Have a listen and tell us what you think. Are we blindly leading ourselves into the unknown?

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