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Epidemiology

Epidemiological studies are an important tool in studying the impact on public health from exposure of whole populations to modern radio technologies. However, although imperative for understanding health effects in the community, epidemiological research investigating associations of mobile phone exposure and non-malignant health outcomes in the general community is virtually non-existent, with few examples of significant reviews available.

 

 

Current Projects

 

MORPhEUS (Mobile Radiofrequency Phone Exposed Users Study)

 

Project leader: Professor Michael Abramson

 

Co-investigators: Dr Geza Benke, Prof Malcolm Sim and A/Prof Rodney Croft

 

NHMRC funded research staff: Ms Christina Dimitriadis, Mr Steven Haas, Mr Imo Inyang

(PhD candidate), Dr Richard Lunz and Ms Juliette Mutheu

 

Background: Although imperative for understanding health effects in the community, epidemiological research investigating associations of mobile phone exposure and non-malignant health outcomes in the general community is virtually non-existent.

 

Hypotheses: (1) There is an association of mobile phone use and delayed cognitive development in teenage children. (2) There is an association of mobile phone use and symptoms, impaired hearing or reduced blood pressure in teenage children. 

Method: We are undertaking a cohort study of teenage school children in year seven (12 or 13 years old), an age group identified as a priority research area, and monitoring for an initial period of three years. All subjects undertake a baseline (then annual) validated questionnaire, physiological (Hearing, BP) and cognitive tests. Dosimetry and exposure assessment from mobile phone use and consequent emissions will be undertaken in collaboration with TRL and cognitive factors will be assessed in collaboration with Swinburne University. Based on our experience in the pilot study and further statistical considerations we expect that about 300 subjects will be recruited with an expected loss to follow-up of less than 30%. The establishment of this cohort would also allow for future follow-ups in 5, 10 or 20 years, when any long-term effects may present. 

 

Results: Expected in November 2007.  

 

Determining the influence of population variation on compliance with radiofrequency exposure limits

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