A study was done with mice that involved exposing pregnant mice to an active mobile phone. When the baby mice became adults, they exhibited symptoms that could indicate that these mice had ADHD. The researchers believe that this means that the same results can happen in humans. Critics point to the flaws with this assumption.
A study was done that involved 33 pregnant mice. The mice were exposed to radiation from a muted, but active, mobile phone that was located a short distance from the cage that the mice were in.
The phone was on an uninterrupted call for seventeen days. The gestation period for mice lasts nineteen days. So, the pregnant mice received exposure from the mobile phone for nearly the entire length of their pregnancies. There was also a control group of pregnant mice who were kept under the same conditions as the test group, except that the control group did not receive exposure from a mobile phone.
When the baby mice from these two groups became adults, they were given a series of psychological and behavioral tests. They also had measurements taken of their brain’s electrical activity.
The mice who were exposed to an active mobile phone while they were in-utero showed signs of hyperactivity, anxiety, and poor memory. In other words, these mice appeared to have ADHD. The mice from the control group, who were not exposed to an active mobile phone, did not exhibit symptoms of ADHD.
The researchers believe that the changes in the behavior of the mice are due to the impaired development of neurons in the prefrontal cortex of the brain. They believe that this was due to being exposed to the radiation from an active mobile phone while they were developing. The researchers also say that the same effects could potentially be occurring in humans.
In other words, the researchers concluded that the rise in the number of children who have been diagnosed with ADHD in the past few years could be due to exposure to active mobile phones while the babies were growing in their mother’s wombs.
Critics of the study are calling it “alarmist and unjustified”. They say that you cannot simply extrapolate the results of the cell phone exposure in the mice and assume that it means that the results will be the same for humans. The memory tests that the researchers did on the mice cannot be directly equated to the memory of humans. Different species are going to react differently.
It is possible that this study, that was done with mice, can be a good starting point towards creating a study that accurately shows the affects of mobile phone exposure on humans. But, as it stands, one cannot simply assume that the way the mice were affected will be absolutely the same as how humans would be.
Image by Joost J. Bakker Ijmuiden on Flickr