A Report on Non-Ionizing Radiation

NTP: Microwave News Article Archive (2004 - )

November 20, 2018

How does a New York Times reporter justify a grossly misleading headline on a story of major importance?

Usually we could only speculate, but in one recent case, thanks to a health advocate’s persistence, we have a peek at the rationalizations and distortions in play.

The headline sits at the top of a story by William Broad, a staff writer, reporting the release of the National Toxicology Program’s (NTP) final report on its $30 million, ten-year animal study of the cancer risks associated with cell phone radiation.

November 17, 2018

This expert group on EMF/NIR, which advises the Swiss Federal Office for the Environment, concludes that the two animal cancer studies are “the most comprehensive” to date. Despite their methodological differences, they both showed “relatively consistent results in schwannomas and gliomas, as well as a dose-dependent trend to an increase in the carcinogenicity of these tumors.” Based on these findings,...

November 9, 2018

Much of the press coverage of the final NTP cell phone/cancer report was lousy. This time, the NTP seems to have wanted it that way.

Reporters were given very little notice to join the NTP teleconference on the release of the report. Nor was there much time to prepare a story for publication.

I received an email at 10:45 am on October 31 for a teleconference at 2 pm that same day. Many reporters missed the advisory and the call. Editors had little time to assign the story.

Attendance on the teleconference was spotty.

November 1, 2018

“We believe that the link between radiofrequency (RF) radiation and tumors in male rats is real,” says John Bucher, the former associate director of the U.S. National Toxicology Program (NTP).

The announcement accompanies this morning’s release of the NTP final reports of studies on cancer in rats and mice exposed to cell phone radiation. Bucher’s project, the largest in NTP history, cost $30 million and took more than ten years to complete.

The NTP found what it calls “clear evidence” that two different types of cell phone signals, GSM and CDMA, increased the incidence of malignant tumors in the hearts of male rats over the course of the two-year study.

October 23, 2018

Japanese and Korean officials are working on a partial replication of the U.S. National Toxicology Program (NTP) animal study on cancer risks from cell phone radiation. The project is expected to be approved and get underway late next year.

Though collaborating on a common experimental design, each country will carry out its own exposures with animals from the same breeder. If the designs are similar enough, the two sets of data will be combined in a joint analysis.

“We have been discussing this issue in Japan,” said Masao Taki of the Department of Electrical and Electronic Engineering at Tokyo Metropolitan University, who was a member of ICNIRP from 1996 to 2008.

September 12, 2018

Ron Melnick, formerly with NTP, spells out 15 “extensive and misleading” statements made by ICNIRP on the NTP and Ramazzini cell phone–animal studies. Also today, Ramazzini’s Fiorella Belpoggi  posted her comments. See also Melnick’s commentary on the NTP study posted (...

September 4, 2018

The International Commission on Non-Ionizing Radiation Protection (ICNIRP) has determined that the two recent animal studies pointing to a cancer risk from cell phone radiation are not convincing and should not be used to revise current exposure standards. 

In a “note” published today, the 12-member group states that the studies by the National Toxicology Program (NTP) and the...

August 29, 2018

Jim Lin,12-yr former member of ICNIRP (& editor-in-chief of Bioelectomagnetics), writes: “Perhaps the time has come to judiciously reassess, revise & update [the ICNIRP] guidelines” so that they protect against long-term RF exposures. As of now they only address acute effects.

April 9, 2018

“You had it right the first time.” That was the implicit message to the National Toxicology Program (NTP) from an expert panel after a point-by-point review of NTP’s draft reports on its $25 million study of cancer risks of cell phone radiation in mice and rats.

Two years ago, with the results in hand, the NTP rushed to warn the public about the dangers of cell phones. It issued an interim report pointing to higher rates of tumors in the hearts and brains of male rats exposed to two different kinds of phone radiation. Then early this February with the release of the formal draft reports, the NTP made a U-turn, saying that using a cell phone “is not a high-risk situation.”

Now a peer review panel —11 pathologists and toxicologists from academia and industry and one statistician— has concluded that there is “clear evidence of carcinogenic activity” in those male rats.

March 22, 2018

Partial results of the Ramazzini Institute’s RF–animal study, which show a statistically significant increase in tumors in the hearts of male rats exposed to GSM radiation, were officially released today. They appear in Environmental Research, a peer-reviewed journal.

As we reported last month, the Ramazzini finding of Schwann cell tumors —called schwannomas— in the rat hearts is consistent with a similar finding by the U.S. National Toxicology Program (NTP) in a $25 million RF project.

In an interview with Microwave News, Fiorella Belpoggi, the senior author of the new paper and the director of the Ramazzini Institute’s Research Center in Bologna, Italy, offered her views on the new results, the parallels with those of the NTP and the implications for IARC’s designation of the cancer risk of RF radiation.

February 20, 2018

It’s happened again.

A second large study has found tumors in the Schwann cells —schwannomas— in the hearts of male rats exposed to cell phone radiation.

The new finding comes from the Ramazzini Institute in Bologna, Italy.

The malignant schwannomas of the heart seen in the Italian study are the same as those described by the U.S. National Toxicology Program (NTP) earlier this month as the basis for their concern that cell phone radiation, both GSM and CDMA, can lead to cancer.

February 7, 2018

Why was the NTP so ambivalent about its cell phone cancer findings at the press conference last Friday when two years ago the same scientific evidence prompted a public health warning?

Some of the pathology numbers got tweaked since they were first released in 2016, but the changes were minor. It’s the same data set —but with a very different interpretation. The NTP mindset somehow shifted from we need to release this important new health data now to this is “not a high-risk situation.”

Who or what moved the NTP managers to change their outlook? There’s no shortage of suspects and suspicions.

February 2, 2018

Here are four key takeaways from the NTP press conference held this afternoon, soon after the release of its two cell phone reports:

1. NTP’s bottom line on cell phone use: “This is not a high-risk situation.”

2. RF radiation has biological effects at levels previously believed to be innocuous —they may be good or bad.

3. NTP will continue to do RF health studies. A new exposure facility is being...

January 29, 2018

The NTP has released two reports on the cancer risks from cell phone radiation (GSM and CDMA) on rats and mice. They are available here.

The NTP press release, “High Exposure to RF Radiation Linked to Tumor Activity in Male Rats” is here.

January 29, 12018

The National Toxicology Program (NTP) has announced that the draft reports...

December 7, 2017

“Considering (a) the conflicting results of RF epidemiology studies and (b) the lack of generally accepted biophysical or molecular mechanisms through which RF could induce or promote neoplasia, data from animal bioassays will play a central role in ‘weight-of-the-evidence’ assessments of the possible health effects of RF exposure.” Abstract only. By IITRI’s David McCormick, who ran the exposures for the NTP–cell phone cancer study.

December 1, 2017

”A few days ago, I received an urgent warning from a longtime contact in Sweden. An industry associate had told him that the U.S. National Toxicology Program’s study on cell phone cancer risks was screwed up and essentially “useless.”

I was tempted to disregard it as nothing more than a corporate delusion. But the original source was said to be Maria Feychting, a professor at the Karolinska Institute and the vice chair of the International Commission on Non-Ionizing Radiation Protection (ICNIRP). She had cast doubt on the landmark $25 million NTP RF–animal study in a talk presented at the Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences —the institute that awards the Nobel prizes in physics and chemistry every year.

I decided I had to check out the rumor.

August 30, 2017

The National Toxicology Program (NTP) will release the “complete results” of its $25 million project on cell phone cancer risks early next year, according to a statement posted on its Web site yesterday.

“The complete results from all the rats and mice studies will be available for peer review and public comment by early 2018,” the NTP states. The animals were exposed to GSM or CDMA radiation for two years before they were sacrificed...

April 27, 2017

Narendra P. Singh, known to friends and colleagues simply as NP, died last December at the age of 69. When his family wrote to me with the news, Singh’s wife asked me not to publish a tribute or an obituary at that time. I honored her request, but now, after a decent interval, I break my silence, in part to make good on a promise and to settle some unfinished business.

Singh was a proud and honest man; he was also gentle and unassuming. “He cannot tell a lie, even a white lie,” Henry Lai, his long-time collaborator at the University of Washington in Seattle, told me years ago. Perhaps most of all, Singh was a meticulous experimentalist who believed in the power of science.

March 21, 2017

The National Toxicology Program (NTP) has changed course and will not —at least for the time being— publish its findings of increased DNA breaks among rats exposed to cell phone radiation as a stand-alone paper.

The DNA study, which is part of NTP’s landmark experiment showing that RF radiation can lead to tumors in the brains and hearts of laboratory animals, will now be incorporated in NTP’s Technical Report on the $25 million project, the NTP has told Microwave News.

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