[ RadSafe ] Radon: POWERFULLY associated with LESS lung cancer by B.Cohen

Steven Dapra sjd at swcp.com
Thu Jun 16 19:33:52 CDT 2011

June 16

         The problem is that politics funds science, thus transmuting 
science into a political football.  Real science can raise its own 
funding.  It does not need to leech off the taxpayer.  (That 
sentiment ought to set someone off.)

Steven Dapra

At 11:30 AM 6/16/2011, you wrote:
>Howard, you wrote, " Politics should follow science, not vice versa."
>The problem is that politics funds science, not vice versa.
>-----Original Message-----
>From: radsafe-bounces at health.phys.iit.edu
>[mailto:radsafe-bounces at health.phys.iit.edu] On Behalf Of Howard
>Sent: Thursday, June 16, 2011 11:30 AM
>To: The International Radiation Protection (Health Physics) MailingList
>Cc: <blc at pitt.edu>; The International Radiation Protection (Health Physics)
>Subject: [ RadSafe ] Radon: POWERFULLY associated with LESS lung cancer by
>Chris, your "APPARENT inverse relationship between lung cancer mortality and
>average radon concentrations" (emphasis added), disqualifies you as a
>serious critic of this most powerful epidemiologic study.
>I and many others have tried to torture out of Prof. Cohen (at meetings of
>Doctors for Disaster Preparedness and here, on line) a spurious "garbage in"
>explanation. Analyses assuming a hundred potential social skews results in
>the same: POWERFUL association in all stable USA
>county populations, with and without smoking and 100 other potential
>I just took out of my wallet a cc of Cohen's graphs with bars of 95%
>significance used as points!
>The "corrected for smoking" graph seems identical to the total graph, bpth
>mortality just 2/3 at the 4 Bq/meter-cubed level touted as dangerous, as at
>1/4 that exposure.
>This is evidence for hormesis, not "apparent", but as definite as
>epidemiology can give.
>LNT seems disproven by this (all Cohen will claim).
>Politics should follow science, not vice versa (I like this use of the word
>Howard Long MD MPH Family Doctor and Epidemiologist
>On Jun 16, 2011, at 6:22 AM, "Chris Hofmeyr" <chris.hofmeyr at webmail.co.za>
> > Dear Proff Raabe and Cohen, Radsafers,
> >
> > Prof Cohen's US-wide county-based radon studies caused quite a stir since
> > mainly because of the apparent inverse relationship between lung cancer
> > mortality and average radon concentrations. However, Cohen's main
> > was that the result was at variance with the linear-no threshold (LNT)
> > My own analysis of the data sets for two periods kindly provided by Prof
> > showed adamantly that there was in fact NO indication of a dependence on
> > average radon concentration up to the maximum recorded. Such a finding
> > concur with Raabe's model of protracted low-intensity exposure (HPJ, July
> > 2011).  Human lifespan is too short to show discernible lung cancer
> > from domestic radon concentrations in the USA.
> >
> > However, uncertainty remains with respect to the question of the apparent
> > inverse relationship in Cohen's data between lung cancer mortality rates
> > average county radon concentration, which some people wanted to interpret
> > proof of hormesis. Significantly, in a 2006 paper on cancer risk from low
> > radiation, Cohen did not cite his own radon data in support of hormesis or
> > rejection of LNT.  In Cohen's data average county radon concentration was
> > some degree anti-correlated with smoking prevalence, thus explaining the
> > inverse relationship in the uncorrected (for smoking) data. The smoking
> > correction to the data was consequently important for the 'real'
> > curve. Unfortunately it was not possible to analyse the correctness of the
> > smoking correction, nor associated uncertainties, but I became convinced
> > Cohen was not able to correct the data adequately for smoking, possibly
> > resulting in the persistent apparent inverse dependence of the 'corrected'
> > data.
> >
> > A stark illustration of the overwhelming importance of extraneous factors
> > most probably smoking - is to compare the female lung cancer data sets
> > with 1979-94. There was a mortality increase of almost a factor of 2,
> > male lung cancer declined very slightly between the two data sets (during
> > 1970-79 it was about a factor of 5 higher than the female figure).
> > Regards.
> > Chris Hofmeyr
> > chris.hofmeyr at webmail.co.za
> >
> > ____________________________________________________________
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