Mystery illness afflicting diplomats linked to RFMW radiation

first_imgReviewed by James Ives, M.Psych. (Editor)Aug 30 2018Writing in advance of the September 15 issue of Neural Computation, Beatrice Golomb, MD, PhD, professor of medicine at University of California San Diego School of Medicine, says publicly reported symptoms and experiences of a “mystery illness” afflicting American and Canadian diplomats in Cuba and China strongly match known effects of pulsed radiofrequency/microwave electromagnetic (RF/MW) radiation.Her conclusions, she said, may aid in the treatment of the diplomats (and affected family members) and assist U.S. government agencies seeking to determine the precise cause. More broadly, Golomb said her research draws attention to a larger population of people who are affected by similar health problems.”I looked at what’s known about pulsed RF/MW in relation to diplomats’ experiences,” said Golomb. “Everything fits. The specifics of the varied sounds that the diplomats reported hearing during the apparent inciting episodes, such as chirping, ringing and buzzing, cohere in detail with known properties of so-called ‘microwave hearing,’ also known as the Frey effect.”And the symptoms that emerged fit, including the dominance of sleep problems, headaches and cognitive issues, as well as the distinctive prominence of auditory symptoms. Even objective findings reported on brain imaging fit with what has been reported for persons affected by RF/MW radiation.”Beginning in 2016, personnel at the U.S. Embassy in Havana, Cuba (as well as Canadian diplomats and family members) described hearing strange sounds, followed by development of an array of symptoms. The source of the health problems has not been determined. Though some officials and media have described the events as “sonic attacks,” some experts on sound have rejected this explanation. In May of this year, the State Department reported that U.S. government employees in Guangzhou, China had also experienced similar sounds and health problems.Affected diplomats and family members from both locations were medically evacuated to the U.S. for treatment, but despite multiple government investigations, an official explanation of events and subsequent illnesses has not been announced. At least two early published studies examining available data were inconclusive.In her paper, scheduled to be published September 15 in Neural Computation, Golomb compared rates of described symptoms among diplomats with a published 2012 study of symptoms reported by people affected by electromagnetic radiation in Japan. By and large, she said the cited symptoms -; headache, cognitive problems, sleep issues, irritability, nervousness or anxiety, dizziness and tinnitus (ringing in the ears) -; occurred at strikingly similar rates.Some diplomats reported hearing loss. That symptom was not assessed in both studies so rates could not be compared, but Golomb said it is widely reported in both conditions. She also noted that previous brain imaging research in persons affected by RF/ EMR “showed evidence of traumatic brain injury, paralleling reports in diplomats.”David O. Carpenter, MD, is director of the Institute for Health and the Environment at the University of Albany, part of the State University of New York. He was not involved in Golomb’s study. He said evidence cited by Golomb illustrates “microwave hearing,” which results “from heating induced in tissue, which causes ‘waves’ in the ear and results in clicks and other sounds.” Reported symptoms, he said, characterize the syndrome of electrohypersensitivity (EHS), in which unusual exposure to radiofrequency radiation can trigger symptoms in vulnerable persons that may be permanent and disabling.Related StoriesNew protein target for deadly ovarian cancerSleep disorders in patients with low back pain linked to increased healthcare visits, costsLiving with advanced breast cancer”We have seen this before when the Soviets irradiated the U.S. Embassy in Moscow in the days of the Cold War,” he said.Golomb, whose undergraduate degree was in physics, conducts research investigating the relationship of oxidative stress and mitochondrial function -; mechanisms shown to be involved with RF/EMR injury -; to health, aging, behavior and illness. Her work is wide-ranging, with published studies on Gulf War illness, statins, antibiotic toxicity, ALS, autism and the health effects of chocolate and trans fats, with a secondary interest in research methods, including placebos.Golomb said an analysis of 100 studies examining whether low-level RF produced oxidative injury found that 93 studies concluded that it did. Oxidative injury or stress arises when there is an imbalance between the production of reactive oxygen species (free radicals) and the body’s detoxifying antioxidant defenses. Oxidative stress has been linked to a range of diseases and conditions, from Alzheimer’s disease, autism and depression to cancer and chronic fatigue syndrome, as well as toxic effects linked to certain drugs and chemicals. More to the point, Golomb said, oxidative injury has been linked to the symptoms and conditions reported in diplomats.The health consequences of RF/MW exposure is a matter of on-going debate. Some government agencies, such as the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences and the National Cancer Institute, publicly assert that low- to mid-frequency, non-ionizing radiation like those from microwaves and RF is generally harmless. They cite studies that have found no conclusive link between exposure and harm.But others, including researchers like Golomb, dispute that conclusion, noting that many of the no-harm studies were funded by vested industries or had other conflicts of interest. She said independent studies over decades have reported biological effects and harms to health from nonionizing radiation, specifically RF/MW radiation, including via oxidative stress and downstream mechanisms, such as inflammation, autoimmune activation and mitochondrial injury.Golomb compared the situation to persons with peanut allergies: Most people do not experience any adverse effect from peanut exposure, but for a vulnerable subgroup, exposure produces negative, even life-threatening, consequences.In her analysis, Golomb concludes that “of hypotheses tendered to date, (RF/MW exposure) alone fits the facts, including the peculiar ones” regarding events in Cuba and China. She said her findings advocate for more robust attention to pulsed RF/MW and associated adverse health effects.”The focus must be on research by parties free from ties to vested interests. Such research is needed not only to explain and address the symptoms in diplomats, but also for the benefit of the small fraction – but large number -; of persons outside the diplomatic corps, who are beset by similar problems.” Source:https://health.ucsd.edu/news/releases/Pages/2018-08-29-researcher-links-diplomats-mystery-illness-to-radiofrequency-microwave-radiation.aspxlast_img read more

Want to get a politician to listen to science Heres some advice

first_imgA packed house for Friday’s session on evidence-based policymaking at the AAAS annual meeting in Washington, D.C. Robb Cohen Photography & Video By Jessica ScarfutoFeb. 17, 2019 , 11:00 AM Country * Afghanistan Aland Islands Albania Algeria Andorra Angola Anguilla Antarctica Antigua and Barbuda Argentina Armenia Aruba Australia Austria Azerbaijan Bahamas Bahrain Bangladesh Barbados Belarus Belgium Belize Benin Bermuda Bhutan Bolivia, Plurinational State of Bonaire, Sint Eustatius and Saba Bosnia and Herzegovina Botswana Bouvet Island Brazil British Indian Ocean Territory Brunei Darussalam Bulgaria Burkina Faso Burundi Cambodia Cameroon Canada Cape Verde Cayman Islands Central African Republic Chad Chile China Christmas Island Cocos (Keeling) Islands Colombia Comoros Congo Congo, the Democratic Republic of the Cook Islands Costa Rica Cote d’Ivoire Croatia Cuba Curaçao Cyprus Czech Republic Denmark Djibouti Dominica Dominican Republic Ecuador Egypt El Salvador Equatorial Guinea Eritrea Estonia Ethiopia Falkland Islands (Malvinas) Faroe Islands Fiji Finland France French Guiana French Polynesia French Southern Territories Gabon Gambia Georgia Germany Ghana Gibraltar Greece Greenland Grenada Guadeloupe Guatemala Guernsey Guinea Guinea-Bissau Guyana Haiti Heard Island and McDonald Islands Holy See (Vatican City State) Honduras Hungary Iceland India Indonesia Iran, Islamic Republic of Iraq Ireland Isle of Man Israel Italy Jamaica Japan Jersey Jordan Kazakhstan Kenya Kiribati Korea, Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, Republic of Kuwait Kyrgyzstan Lao People’s Democratic Republic Latvia Lebanon Lesotho Liberia Libyan Arab Jamahiriya Liechtenstein Lithuania Luxembourg Macao Macedonia, the former Yugoslav Republic of Madagascar Malawi Malaysia Maldives Mali Malta Martinique Mauritania Mauritius Mayotte Mexico Moldova, Republic of Monaco Mongolia Montenegro Montserrat Morocco Mozambique Myanmar Namibia Nauru Nepal Netherlands New Caledonia New Zealand Nicaragua Niger Nigeria Niue Norfolk Island Norway Oman Pakistan Palestine Panama Papua New Guinea Paraguay Peru Philippines Pitcairn Poland Portugal Qatar Reunion Romania Russian Federation Rwanda Saint Barthélemy Saint Helena, Ascension and Tristan da Cunha Saint Kitts and Nevis Saint Lucia Saint Martin (French part) Saint Pierre and Miquelon Saint Vincent and the Grenadines Samoa San Marino Sao Tome and Principe Saudi Arabia Senegal Serbia Seychelles Sierra Leone Singapore Sint Maarten (Dutch part) Slovakia Slovenia Solomon Islands Somalia South Africa South Georgia and the South Sandwich Islands South Sudan Spain Sri Lanka Sudan Suriname Svalbard and Jan Mayen Swaziland Sweden Switzerland Syrian Arab Republic Taiwan Tajikistan Tanzania, United Republic of Thailand Timor-Leste Togo Tokelau Tonga Trinidad and Tobago Tunisia Turkey Turkmenistan Turks and Caicos Islands Tuvalu Uganda Ukraine United Arab Emirates United Kingdom United States Uruguay Uzbekistan Vanuatu Venezuela, Bolivarian Republic of Vietnam Virgin Islands, British Wallis and Futuna Western Sahara Yemen Zambia Zimbabwe WASHINGTON, D.C.—Present both sides. Disclose conflicts of interest. And make sure you catch them at just the right time.Those are some of the best tips to get members of Congress to listen to scientific advice, according to a session here Friday at the annual meeting of AAAS, which publishes Science.Talking to a politician is a lot different than talking to an average member of the public, said panelist Elizabeth Suhay, associate professor of government at American University’s School of Public Affairs here. The problem, she said, is that most scientists don’t really know how to tailor their communication specifically to politicians. “What we recognized is that there is a lot of science communication advice out there for informing the public, but not so much for communicating with policymakers.” Want to get a politician to listen to science? Here’s some advicecenter_img Email To create a better road map for scientists, Suhay and colleagues interviewed Democratic and Republican members of the U.S. Congress to ask what advice they would give the scientific community to help it improve the way it communicates with policymakers. The sample, which included 22 members of Congress and 20 staff members, was an even mix of liberal Democrats and conservative Republicans, Suhay said. This was then combined with the feedback from a random survey of more than 600 scientist members of AAAS, more than half of whom had experience communicating with policymakers.The first tip: Don’t just focus on the politician—focus on their constituents. For example, when proposing a carbon tax to lower greenhouse gas emissions, the scientist should provide data on the feasibility of using renewable energy to power farm equipment. That way, the policymaker can fully consider the economic repercussions such a tax would have on their constituents who live in rural farming communities.Scientists should also address both sides of an issue when talking to policymakers, Suhay said. Large areas of land covered with solar panels can be a great source of green energy, for example, but they can also create “heat islands” that can warm the local climate. Politicians should be given the cost-benefit analyses of such projects, for example, and shown the data on the impacts of both to understand whether they should support building a new solar farm. Scientists should also disclose any potential conflicts of interest, Suhay says—adding that sharing any personal, professional, research, or political biases builds trust and helps policymakers make an informed decision.Pitching to a policymaker’s staff is also key, said panelist Karen Akerlof, a visiting AAAS scholar and affiliate faculty at George Mason University in Fairfax, Virginia, whose research focuses on environmental social science and evidence-based policymaking. “There are large numbers of staffers who work in the personal offices and committees of Congress, and they are on the front lines in getting information into those offices and in front of those committees.” But the most important advice for scientists interested in influencing policymakers is to be timely, both Suhay and Akerlof said. “If you are really interested in a particular bill, there’s a life cycle to that piece of legislation,” Suhay noted. So it’s very important to know whether Congress is in or out of session. Although proposing new legislation on vaccines in the midst of a measles outbreak might seem like a good idea because it is timely and relevant, suggesting a new policy to the state legislature in the middle of January might not be effective because the legislative sessions for most states begin in early January, for example. Suhay recommends being aware of these dates and planning early.A final recommendation: Talk to both sides. “It’s the partisan fights that get the attention,” Suhay said, “but there are more opportunities for bipartisanship than you think.” Click to view the privacy policy. Required fields are indicated by an asterisk (*) Sign up for our daily newsletter Get more great content like this delivered right to you! Countrylast_img read more