In what will certainly fuel speculation about the long-term health effects of cell phone usage, a new study has found that the radiation from mobile devices causes an increase in brain activity, but researchers did not conclude whether or not it was harmful.
“This study shows that the human brain is sensitive to electromagnetic radiation coming out of cellphones,” Nora Volkow, an author on the study published Tuesday in the Journal of the American Medical Association, told WSJ.com. “That is something we need to face.”
Volkow continued, “our finding does not tell us if this is harmful or not.”
According to the Wall Street Journal, results from studies looking at the health effects have been mixed. Some large-scale studies have found a link between cellphone use and brain cancer, but they haven’t been able to show that the cancer was caused by cellphone radiation.
The main concern, the report says, is that radiation from phones could cause DNA mutations or changes to chemicals in the brain, leading to tumors or cognitive decline. But to date there is no known evidence that the frequency of the waves emitted from phones are powerful enough to cause such changes, according to Reto Huber, a professor at the University Children’s Hospital Zurich who has published several studies on electromagnetic fields and cellphones but wasn’t part of this latest study.