Researchers Analyze Cancer Rates in Rats Following Exposure to Radiation, Magnetic Fields

A study conducted by researchers at the Ramazzini Institute in Bologna, Italy looks at cancer rates in rats exposed to a single low-dose of gamma radiation at 6 weeks and then magnetic fields for their entire lifetime. The findings, which were published in the International Journal of Radiation Biology, found higher than expected rates of three types of cancer. “The results of the study showed significant carcinogenic effects for the mammary gland in males and females and a significant increased incidence of malignant schwannomas of the heart as well
as increased incidence of lymphomas/leukemias in males.” the authors stated.

The authors say the study calls for a “reevaluation of the safety of non-ionizing radiation”. To conduct the study, rats were exposed to a single low-dose of gamma radiation at 6 weeks and then magnetic fields for their entire lifetime. The researchers did not include a group of mice that were not exposed to radiation alone or magnetic fields alone.

Study author Fiorella Belpoggi told Microwave News magnetic fields can “enhance the effects of a well-known carcinogen,” One surprising finding was the rate of breast tumors in male rats. “In our historical controls, mammary cancer in male rats is a very rare tumor,” the authors said. The researchers describe their findings below:

(a) A significant dose-related increased incidence of mammary adenocarcinomas [breast cancer] in males and females in particular in males exposed to 20μT plus 0.1Gy and in females exposed to 1,000μT plus 0.1 Gy;
(b) In males a significant dose-related increased incidence of heart malignant schwannomas with a significant increase among males exposed to 20μT plus 0.1Gy [statisticallly significant] and to 1,000μT plus 0.1 Gy; and
(c) A significant increased incidence of hematopoietic neoplasias [leukemia and lymphoma] in males treated at 1,000μT plus 0.1 Gy.
The 0.1Gy dose of gamma radiation the rats were exposed to “cannot be called unusual” according to the authors. One common source may be CT scans, for instance. Gamma radiation is a known carcinogen.

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