A new mouse study out of Yale suggests that cell phone radiation during pregnancy may trigger attention deficit symptoms in their unborn child.
But other researchers warn extrapolating results from a single mouse study to humans is unwarranted, and confuses the public. Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) is a disorder usually first diagnosed in childhood and is characterized by a child’s inability to pay attention or concentrate in multiple environments.
“We have shown that behavioral problems in mice that resemble ADHD are caused by cell phone exposure in the womb,” said Hugh Taylor, lead author and a member of the Yale School of Medicine’s Department of Obstetrics, Gynecology & Reproductive Sciences.
“The rise in behavioral disorders in human children may be in part due to fetal cellular telephone irradiation exposure,” he added.”
In the new study, Yale researchers exposed pregnant mice to radiation from muted and silenced cell phones, as well as active phone calls, during the study. These phones were placed above the cage of the pregnant mice during the entire duration of their pregnancy, about 19 days.
A control group of mice was kept under the same conditions, but exposed to phones that were deactivated and turned off during the entire duration of their pregnancy.
When the baby mice became adults, researchers measured their brain electrical activity. They also conducted a battery of psychological and behavioral tests in all the mice.
Researchers found that the mice that were exposed to radiation coming from the active, turned-on cellphones tended to be more hyperactive and had reduced memory capacity.
While the researchers acknowledge that further research is needed in humans, Taylor says he still thinks that limiting exposure of the fetus ‘seems warranted.’
“It’s probably safer for a pregnant woman not to carry their cell phone clipped to their belt or sleep with the phone near their abdomen unless it’s turned off,” suggested Taylor.
The study was published in the March 15 issue of Scientific Reports.
Source: Scientific Reports