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IARC 8 October 2008 Update on Interphone Study

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17 November 2008


On a regular basis the International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) provides updates on the progress of the Interphone Project on their website. The latest update was issued on October 8, 2008.

The report summarises all national Interphone studies published so far and includes comments on the results of the national studies as well as several papers in which the data from up to five of the 13 participating countries were combined. The update does not present the results of a pooled analysis of the data from all 13 participating countries because the final conclusions of the entire project have yet to be published in the scientific literature. Public statements from IARC indicate that the final results are expected to be published soon.

General information on the Interphone Project

The Interphone Project is being co-ordinated by IARC ( which is part of the World Health Organization (WHO). It is the biggest and most comprehensive study undertaken to consider whether the use of mobile phones increases the risk of head and neck tumors (gliomas, meningiomas, parotid gland tumors and acoustic neurinomas).

The Interphone Project was structured to take advantage of combined data from multiple countries, which will enable researchers to maximize statistical power, and in turn, increase the probability of detecting any health effect. The Interphone Project involves 13 countries: Australia, Canada, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Israel, Italy, Japan, New Zealand, Norway, Sweden and the UK.

Results from some of the national studies have been published. However, the most authoritative conclusions will only be drawn when the pooled analysis of the full international data is published in its entirety in 2009. Until the results of all of the national studies are available in the scientific literature, as well as the overall analysis of the data that will be undertaken by the IARC in 2009, a complete assessment cannot be made.

Industry’s funding of the Interphone Project

The mobile phone industry actively supports research on mobile phone safety, but, as always, cautions that individual scientific studies need to be assessed in the light of the total research into mobile phone safety.

The mobile phone industry provided partial funding for the Interphone Project in conjunction with the European Commission and many national research funding bodies. Funding was provided in such a manner as to ensure the full scientific independence of the study.

The MOA is aware of the interest in the results of the combined Interphone analysis and would like to see the Interphone study group complete the analysis and submit for publication so that the results can be examined by the scientific community.

Further information on the Interphone project can be found at: .The MOA website is:

For more information please contact Christine Jude 020 7331 2029 / 07714 241924. Email This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it

61% of UK adults access the internet from mobiles

Mobile phones cannot work without a network of base stations (masts). There are approximately 52,500 base station sites (excluding microcells) in the UK. Only a third of these are large, free standing masts. A YouGov survey for MOA (Sept 2014) showed that nearly 8 out of 10 people recognise the link between masts and good mobile coverage. Mobile telecommunications are vital for the UK’s economic competitiveness and in promoting social inclusion. There are now 89.9 million mobile subscriptions in the UK. In Q1 2015 61 per cent of UK adults used their mobile phones for internet access. Tablet ownership is 54% of UK households.

No Established Health Effects

Mobile phones operate by using radio waves, similar to those that have been widely used for decades, for example in radio, TV and radar signals. A large number of studies over the last two decades have found no clear evidence of adverse health effects from the use of mobile phones or from phone masts.