In making recommendations for future research, the report emphasised a need to focus on new and emerging devices that emit radiofrequency radiation, and to gather more data on cancer risk among those who have used phones for more than 15 years.
"There is no convincing evidence that radiofrequency exposure causes health effects in adults or in children but beyond 15 years for mobile phones, we have to say we have little or no information," Swerdlow said. "I think it is important therefore, to some extent, to keep an eye out on this, which we will do into the future."
"Remember this is an exposure that 20 years ago nobody had and now practically everybody has so you might expect that if there were appreciable effects that you would see them in the tumour rates," he said. "But if this is something that takes 15, 20 years or more to show up – we have no reason to think there is an effect – if it takes a long time to show up, we need to keep watching the rates just in case."
Professor Patricia McKinney at the centre for epidemiology and biostatistics at Leeds University said: "The general public should be reassured by the conclusions on mobile phone use as the current evidence does not support any causal link to brain tumours or other cancers. However, the conclusions relate to mobile phone exposures of up to 15 years and further monitoring of possible risks is needed."