Cell phones don’t cause cancer, a new study revealed, heightening the debate over whether mobile devices harm humans.
A group of experts from the U.S., England and Sweden conducted a major review of research so far and found no convincing evidence of any cancer connection to cell phone use. The group also said there is little evidence to believe radio signals trigger tumors.
“Although there remains some uncertainty, the trend in the accumulating evidence is increasingly against the hypothesis that mobile phone use can cause brain tumors in adults,” said the committee in the journal “Environmental Health Perspectives.”
Though cell phone signals and cancer don’t appear to be linked in this study, the committee cannot say definitively there is no connection between the two. Current data is limited to about 10 to 15 years of exposure in adults, while data on how cell phones affect children is not yet available.
Cell phone use has exploded since the industry emerged in the early 1980s. Today, nearly five billion handsets are used around the world, leading some to believe the increase in devices harms people’s health.
Saturday’s study comes just two months after the World Health organisation’s International Agency for Research on Cancer classified cell phone use as “possibly carcinogenic to humans.” Other items in the category are lead, pickled vegetables and coffee.
The WHO study is the largest study conducted since May 2010, when researchers who interviewed almost 13,000 handset users in 13 countries over a 10-year period, found no increased risk of glioma or meningioma tumors from using a cell phone. The study, however, did say people who had never used a cell phone had a lower risk of brain cancer than people who used them than people who had.
Experts also said people who averaged half an hour a day of cell phone conversations over a span of 10 years had greater odds of developing cancer.
A definitive answer to the cancer question is still several years away. Until then, researchers continue to bunk and debunk claims that there are links between the two.