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Mobile Phones Report Claims 'Strongest Link Yet' To Cancer
March 27, 2000

Experts studying mobile phones are waiting to investigate new research from Poland which reportedly establishes a link between the devices and cancer.

The Sunday Mirror newspaper said the 20-year study of servicemen had established "the strongest link yet", showing a high cancer death rate among soldiers exposed to microwave radiation, "the same as that emitted by the phones".

The team checked the medical records of servicemen who were exposed to the radiation between 1970 and 1990, the report said. Their medical histories and death rates were then compared to a group of soldiers who were not exposed.

Researchers found those exposed, largely through using military equipment, were more likely to get some cancers, the newspaper said.

Exact statistics for the increased risk found in the Polish research would not be available until the scientists had completed their study in 2005, it added.

The study is being conducted at the Military Institute of Hygiene and Epidemiology in Warsaw led by Professor Stanislaw Szmigielski.

A spokeswoman for the National Radiological Protection Board added: "The report in the Sunday Mirror refers to a follow up study of a cohort of servicemen in Poland by Professor Stanislaw Szmigielski.

"There have previously been publications by the same research group that have been examined by a number of organisations throughout the world. Difficulties in interpretation of data have previously been identified in these studies.

"To what extent these difficulties have been resolved in the present study and whether the same cohort group have been used is not known. Both the Independent Expert Working Group on Mobile Phones and NRPB's advisory group on non-ionising radiation are aware of the earlier studies, and look forward to seeing the new research.

"NRPB has already said that epidemiological studies of the people exposed to radio frequency radiation is an important area for research and has supported European Community initiatives in this area."

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