The link between the use of new and old cell phones and brain cancer has strengthened with the release of a new report from the influential World Health Organization (WHO) that notes that there is “possibly” a link between the two. Many scientists have been suggesting the connection for several decades now, but this is the first time that a source as powerful and respected as the World Health Organization has stated that there may indeed be a connection between malignant brain tumors and people who have used cell phones.
The shock announcement was made at the conclusion of a weeklong meeting of the WHO’s subsidiary investigative panel, the International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) in Lyon in France. “The working group classifies the radio and electromagnetic fields as possibly carcinogenic to humans; that is, within the classification used by the International Agency for Research on Cancer,” says the head of IARC Working Group, Dr Jonathan Samet. The group notes that given the prevalence of cell phone use around the world (around five billion people at last count), more research is therefore required, but adds that those who use cell phones frequently and are also exposed to other sources of radiation are most at risk.
The founder of US group Electromagnetic Health, Camilla Rees, says she is pleased by the announcement but that more needs to be done urgently. “Early indicators from scientists are projecting a tsunami of brain cancer unless we do something to educate people to lower their exposure,” she claims.