Perhaps Orange should introduce a Mouse Talk Plan now?
Posted Jan 07 2010 1:48am
A report from today's BBC website tells us that after all the concern over possible damage to health from
using mobile phones, scientists have found a potential benefit from radiation.
Their work has been carried out on mice, but it suggests
mobiles might protect against Alzheimer's.Florida scientists found that phone radiation actually
protected the memories of mice programmed to get Alzheimer's disease. They are now testing more frequencies to see if they can get
The study by the Florida Alzheimer's Disease Research Centre
is published in the Journal of Alzheimer's Disease which involved 96 mice, most
of which had been genetically altered to develop beta-amyloid plaques in their
brains, which are a marker of Alzheimer's disease, as they aged. The rest of
the mice were non-demented.
All the mice were exposed to the electro-magnetic field
generated by a standard phone for two one-hour periods each day for seven to
nine months. Their cages were arranged at the same distance around a centrally
located antenna generating the phone signal.
The researchers, led by Professor Gary Arendash, said that
if the phone exposure was started when the Alzheimer's mice were young adults,
before signs of memory impairment were apparent, their cognitive ability was
In fact, the Alzheimer's mice performed as well on tests
measuring memory and thinking skills as aged mice without dementia. If older Alzheimer's mice already showing memory problems
were exposed to the electro-magnetic waves, their memory impairment
Professor Arendash was the author of a previous study that
said coffee could protect against Alzheimer's. He said: "It will take some
time to determine the exact mechanisms involved in these beneficial memory
effects. One thing is clear, however - the cognitive benefits
of long-term electro-magnetic exposure are real, because we saw them in both
protection and treatment-based experiments involving Alzheimer's mice, as well
as in normal mice."
The memory benefits of phone exposure took months to show
up, suggesting that a similar effect in humans would take years.
The researchers conclude that electro-magnetic field
exposure could be an effective, non-invasive and drug-free way to prevent and
treat Alzheimer's disease in humans. They are currently testing whether different sets of
frequencies and strengths might produce a more rapid and greater cognitive
Chuanhai Cao, another author of the study, said: "Since
production and aggregation of beta-amyloid occurs in traumatic brain injury,
particularly in soldiers during war, the therapeutic impact of our findings may
extend beyond Alzheimer's disease."
The authors say previous studies have linked a possible
increased risk of Alzheimer's with "low-frequency" electro-magnetic
exposure like the energy waves generated by power and telephone lines. They say mobile phones emit "high frequency"
electro-magnetic waves that are very different because they can have beneficial
effects on brain function, such as increasing brain cell activity.
They did carry out autopsies on the mice and found no
evidence of abnormal growth in the brains of the Alzheimer's mice following
months of exposure to the electro-magnetic waves. They also found all the major peripheral organs, such as the
liver and lungs, were normal.
Rebecca Wood, chief executive of the Alzheimer's Research
Trust, said: "This research has been carried out in mice that mimic some
of the symptoms of Alzheimer's in people, so we don't know if any similar
effects will be seen in humans.
"Although the researchers hope their findings will translate
to people, much more research is needed to find out if there could be any
beneficial effects of long-term exposure to electro-magnetism, and to guarantee
its safety. We don't recommend spending 24 hours a day on a mobile
phone - we don't know the long-term effects, and bills could go through the
Dr Susanne Sorensen, head of research at the Alzheimer's
Society, said the results were "exciting and quite convincing".
"However, this research in mice is at an early stage
and a lot more work is needed before we can say anything about the possible
preventative or treatment effects of this type of radiation on people with