Study links Vatican Radio's waves to cancer risk: report

Jul 14, 2010

A court-ordered study has found that electromagnetic waves beamed by Vatican Radio leave residents living near the station's antennas at a higher risk of cancer, Italian media said Wednesday.

"There has been an important, coherent and meaningful correlation between exposure to Vatican Radio's structures and the risk of leukaemia and lymphoma in children," the report said, according to the daily La Stampa.

The report also warned of "important risks" of dying of for people who had resided at least 10 years within a nine-kilometre (5.5-mile) radius of the radio's giant antenna towers near Cesano, some 20 kilometres north of Rome.

The radio's director, Federico Lombardi, disputed the report, saying: "Vatican Radio is astonished to hear the news on the results of the study."

Lombardi, who is also the Vatican spokesman, added: "Vatican Radio has always observed international directives on electromagnetic emissions and since 2001 has observed more restrictive norms set by Italy to allay the concerns of the neighbouring populations."

Speaking on Vatican Radio, he said: "According to international scientific literature on the matter, the existence of a causal link like the one apparently hypothesised by the report had never been established."

A Rome judge ordered the report in 2005 as part of an investigation into a complaint filed in 2001 by Cesano residents who alleged health hazards posed by the .

Vatican Radio's then-president Roberto Tucci and director Pasquale Borgomeo were among defendants in a case that was thrown out last year after the statute of limitations expired.

At the time, Lombardi said he was not satisfied with the result since he had expected an acquittal.

The Vatican spokesman said the Holy See would soon publish its own experts' conclusion in the case.

A 2001 investigation by Italy's environment ministry showed that magnetic fields in the area were six times more powerful than allowed, while Rome's Lazio region estimated that the rate of deaths from among children in the Cesano area was three times higher than in adjoining areas.

Vatican City, the world's smallest state, is an enclave of Rome covering 0.44 square kilometres (0.17 square miles).

Explore further: Can science eliminate extreme poverty?

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

Facebook, Wikipedia execs brief Vatican on Web

Nov 12, 2009

(AP) -- Executives from Facebook, Wikipedia and Google are attending a Vatican meeting to brief officials and Catholic bishops about the Internet and digital youth culture.

Vatican searches for extra-terrestrial life

Nov 10, 2009

Is there life on other planets? The Vatican has asked that age-old question over the past five days during a "study week" on astrobiology gathering leading scientists from around the world.

Recommended for you

Can science eliminate extreme poverty?

Apr 16, 2014

Science has often come to the rescue when it comes to the world's big problems, be it the Green Revolution that helped avoid mass starvation or the small pox vaccine that eradicated the disease. There is ...

Japan stem cell body splashes cash on luxury furniture

Apr 14, 2014

A publicly-funded research institute in Japan, already embattled after accusing one of its own stem cell scientists of faking data, has spent tens of thousands of dollars on designer Italian furniture, reportedly to use up ...

User comments : 0

More news stories

Newlyweds, be careful what you wish for

A statistical analysis of the gift "fulfillments" at several hundred online wedding gift registries suggests that wedding guests are caught between a rock and a hard place when it comes to buying an appropriate gift for the ...

Can new understanding avert tragedy?

As a boy growing up in Syracuse, NY, Sol Hsiang ran an experiment for a school project testing whether plants grow better sprinkled with water vs orange juice. Today, 20 years later, he applies complex statistical ...

Roman dig 'transforms understanding' of ancient port

(Phys.org) —Researchers from the universities of Cambridge and Southampton have discovered a new section of the boundary wall of the ancient Roman port of Ostia, proving the city was much larger than previously ...

Crowd-sourcing Britain's Bronze Age

A new joint project by the British Museum and the UCL Institute of Archaeology is seeking online contributions from members of the public to enhance a major British Bronze Age archive and artefact collection.

Hackathon team's GoogolPlex gives Siri extra powers

(Phys.org) —Four freshmen at the University of Pennsylvania have taken Apple's personal assistant Siri to behave as a graduate-level executive assistant which, when asked, is capable of adjusting the temperature ...

Deadly human pathogen Cryptococcus fully sequenced

Within each strand of DNA lies the blueprint for building an organism, along with the keys to its evolution and survival. These genetic instructions can give valuable insight into why pathogens like Cryptococcus ne ...

Researchers discover target for treating dengue fever

Two recent papers by a University of Colorado School of Medicine researcher and colleagues may help scientists develop treatments or vaccines for Dengue fever, West Nile virus, Yellow fever, Japanese encephalitis and other ...