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A Report on Non-Ionizing Radiation

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News Center: Short Takes Archive

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February 3, 2012

He's back. George Carlo, that is. Though not in the cell phone game, but baseball. Carlo has reinvented himself, this time as a brain scientist. He is now working with Brian Peterson, who calls himself the "Performance Enhancement Instructor" for the Detroit Tigers, according to the Web site Fangraphs. This is Peterson on Carlo's qualifications: "He's an MD, he has a PhD in pathology, and he also has a law degree. By trade, he's a brain researcher. George is a research scientist and an expert on how the body works in conjunction with the brain." That MD degree is news to us. Peterson might have added industry fixer and con artist to Carlo's résumé. After all he used to be a pitchman for BioPro, which sold useless gizmos that promised protection against cell phone radiation. And in the 1990s, Carlo ran the biggest scam of all, WTR, the CTIA-financed industry research program on cell phone radiation risks (see "WTR and the Betrayal of the Public Trust"). Twenty years later, no one yet knows what happened to the $25 million that was supposed to have been spent on health research.

January 31, 2012

“I am the happiest man alive,” says Robert Dill-Bundi, the Swiss Olympic cycling champion. Dill-Bundi developed a glioblastoma multiforme, an aggressive, usually fatal, type of brain tumor, but is still alive years after being treated with electric fields. The therapy was developed by Novocure, an Israeli company (see: “Weak Kilohertz Electric Fields Kill Tumor Cells”). Bill Doyle, Novocure’s chairman, describes how the treatment works in a lecture recently posted by TEDMED, an offshoot of TED, the technology/entertainment/design consortium. Take a look at the 16-minute video and see what might well be the future of cancer treatment.

January 18, 2012

Carl Blackman of the U.S. EPA has published an editorial comment accompanying the new Boris Pasche paper on modulating frequencies to treat cancer in the British Journal of Cancer. In "Treating Cancer with Amplitude-Modulated Electromagnetic Fields: A Potential Paradigm Shift, Again?," Blackman puts Pasche's new findings in context with the work on amplitude-modulated (AM) signals by Ross Adey and Suzanne Bawin from the mid-1970s, as well as Blackman's own studies from the same era. Blackman concludes: "The group of [Pasche's] three papers demonstrate a new, potentially important modality in the treatment of cancer that could lead to a paradigm shift in disease treatment. I hope that this medical application of AM-EMF will not be allowed languish without funding, as happened with its previous, ill-fated emergence." The editorial is open access, as is the Pasche paper.

January 7, 2012

The Observer in the U.K. is the first mainstream news outlet to cover Boris Pasche and Frederico Costa's cancer therapy that uses weak RF radiation to shrink liver tumors. The story was posted today by Robin McKie with the headline, "Hopes Rise for New Cancer Treatment After Tests with Electromagnetism." McKie includes a cautious assessment from Cancer Research UK, a leading charity and the publisher of the British Journal of Cancer. Pasche reveals that he has a go-ahead from the FDA to embark on large-scale trials —and that he is now looking for financial support. (See our earlier story on Pasche's TheraBionic therapy and "Specific Frequencies Block Growth of Cancer Cells," his most recent paper). January 8… Today, Sunday, the Daily Mail picked up the story from the Observer under the headline, "Hopes of Cancer Breakthrough with Treatment Using Electromagnetic Fields To Shrink Tumours.

December 6, 2011

Switzerland's Meike Mevissen and Chris Portier of the U.S. offer their insiders' acccount of last May's IARC search for consensus on the cancer risks of RF radiation in their article, "The Eyes of the World Were Upon Us." It's a serious look at the give-and-take among the 29 participants over the weeklong meeting (hint: they never mention pickled vegetables). Ten years ago, Mevissen and Portier were also members of the IARC panel which classified power-frequency EMFs as a "possible human carcinogen (2B)," the same designation assigned to RF last spring.

November 30, 2011

Christopher Ketcham, who made a splash early last year with his GQ piece, "Warning: Your Cell Phone May Be Hazardous to Your Health," is back on the EMF beat with a cover story in the latest issue of Earth Island Journal: "Warning: High Frequency." The first warning centered on brain tumor risks; the new one focuses on electromagnetic hypersensitivity. One quote from Carl Blackman of the U.S. EPA highlights how controversial the whole issue is: "With my government cap on, I'm supposed to tell you you're perfectly safe," Blackman tells [a woman whose family and farm animals are bedeviled with health problems after a cell tower was installed nearby]. "With my civilian cap on, I have to tell you to consider leaving." See also the accompanying comments by the editor of Earth Island Journal.

November 26, 2011

Italy's National Health Council is recommending a precautionary approach to the use of cell phones by children, according to La Repubblica, a leading national newspaper.

Although the announcement comes right after the airing of a hard hitting TV program last night (see item below), La Repubblica reports that the decision to advise precaution was made at the council's November 15 meeting. In a press release, the council states that its move was prompted by IARC's classification of RF radiation as a possible cancer agent. An information campaign is planned to "raise awareness."

November 26, 2011

Tomorrow, Sunday, Italy's TV news documentary program, Report, will present the findings of its investigation on cell-phone health risks and the role of industry funding for research. The program will air on RAI3, a national network, at 9:30pm local time  (3:30pm on the U.S. East Coast). The show may be seen on the Internet. Watch a short preview.

November 27

Now you can watch the entire hour-long show. There is also a transcript, and with Google Translate, you can make sense of it all even if you don't speak Italian.

November 23, 2011

ICNIRP has announced the results of its most recent elections. Rüdiger Matthes and Maria Feychting are the new chair and vice-chair, respectively, of the commission. They will take over in May 2012. Three new members were also elected to ICNIRP and will take their seats in May: Rodney Croft, Carmela Marino and Soichi Watanabe.

Last summer, ICNIRP began posting a "declaration of personal interest" for each member of the commission. At the time, one declaration was noticeably missing: Mike Repacholi's. Since then, ICNIRP has added an explanation: Because Repacholi is chairman emeritus and has no "voting rights," he is not required to out fill out a declaration.

ICNIRP is also not asking its consulting experts and members of its advisory committees to make full disclosures. We think we know why. A number of industry consultants advise ICNIRP —Leeka Kheifets and David Black come right to mind. If such ties were openly acknowledged, they would make a mockery of ICNIRP's claims of being free of corporate influence.

November 19, 2011

Is it possible that a senior scientist at NIH, a former White House advisor, could be clueless about epigenetics (the study of how changes in the expression of genes can occur without changes in the underlying DNA)? Seems so. We're talking about Ezekiel Emanuel, a bioethicist at NIH. His brother Rahm Emanuel is the mayor of Chicago and the former chief of staff to President Obama.

Earlier this month, Franz Adlkofer gave an invited lecture at Harvard Law School on how institutional corruption stands in the way of research on the effects of cell phone radiation. (A video of his lecture was posted online yesterday.)

In the Q&A session that followed, an unseen member of the audience stated that she had been at NIH last spring when she and her coworkers received an e-mail from Ezekiel Emanuel "bashing" the news —presumably— that IARC had found that RF/microwaves are a possible human carcinogen because it "would require a really deep radical alteration of our views in basic physics." In other words, Emanuel was espousing the opinion that cell phones cannot lead to cancer because microwaves cannot break human DNA. Emanuel appears to have been reading too much of the unscientific musings doled out each week by Robert Park. This is nothing new for Emanuel. In 2008, he said essentially the same thing about cell phones and DNA breaks in The New Republic. It also means that Emanuel has had the last three years to take Epigenetics 101 and still has an incomplete.

Happily, there are people who have done their homework and who are making sense. Richard Stein, a postdoc in molecular biology at Princeton, is one of them. In a just published essay in the Journal of Epidemiology and Community Health, Stein writes: "For a long time, it was assumed that chemicals are able to cause cancer only by mutating the DNA. However, a growing body of scientific evidence reveals that this 'carcinogenesis equals mutagenesis' paradigm is not accurate." (This applies equally to radiation  as well as chemicals.) Another is Melinda Wenner Moyer, a science writer and blogger, who recently posted a piece, "The Epigenetics of Cancer," which concludes: "cancer is about far more than just mutations." (See also her earlier piece: "Cell Phones, Cancer, and Scientific Oversimplification.") Want to know more about epigenetics? Check out this paper in Nature.

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