January 18, 2022

Phil B. Fontanarosa, MD, MBA
Interim Editor-in-Chief
Journal of the American Medical Association and the JAMA Network

Dear Dr. Fontanarosa,

As you are already keenly aware, on December 9th, JAMA Oncology, part of the AMA family of journals, published what purports to be a review of radiofrequency (RF) radiation and cancer by David Robert Grimes.

Grimes’s paper is rife with distortions and omissions. It is a disservice to the AMA and to all those who care about public health. I urge you, as the current editor-in-chief of all AMA journals, to retract this paper.

Here are four reasons why you should set the record straight as soon as possible:

  • Grimes gets the science wrong.
  • Grimes is not qualified to write the review.
  • Grimes’s affiliation with Oxford University is tenuous, at best.
  • Grimes misreports his statements on behalf of the telecom industry in the published conflict of interest (CoI) disclosure.

1. The Science …..SNIP

Read the full letter here

and Slesin’s December 14, 2021, letter to Dr. Nora Disis, editor of JAMA Oncology.


And from Joel Moskowitz, School of Public Health
University of California, Berkeley

Why did JAMA Oncology publish a paper written by a Telecom industry spokesperson?

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Electromagnetic Radiation Safety

January 18, 2022

JAMA Oncology recently published a paper, “Radiofrequency Radiation and Cancer: A Review,” that provides a biased, highly selective “review” of the scientific literature written by David Grimes, a pro-industry science writer and physicist.

Several experts who have worked in this field for decades and two former U.S. government health officials wrote to me expressing their concerns about this paper:

  • “The mentioned paper contains hardly one page of actual review. It is trying to fixate the old paradigm of not enough energy to cause harm. What a poor and pathetic attempt by the industry proponents.”
  • “I could go on at length about the flaws in his arguments … I hope someone with oncological/epidemiological clout in the community takes this crank to task and highlights the enormous holes and one-sided nature of his argument.”
  • “Confidentially, this is garbage. Grimes gets this published because he is a naysayer. He claims to discuss mechanisms, but only discusses his own irrelevant hobby horse.”
  • “Grimes is going to get a bit of scrutiny over this piece. It is really bad.”
  • “I think this needs to be retracted.”

On December 20, 2021, I sent the journal’s editor-in-chief, Mary “Nora” Disis, MD, my comments along with a recommendation that the journal retract the paper. Her response:

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“The JAMA Network journals reserve retractions for articles that have been fabricated, falsified, or plagiarized. There does not appear to be evidence of such misconduct in this article.”

She suggested I submit a (400-word) letter to the editor so the paper’s author could respond to my comments (with a 500-word letter). In my professional opinion, letters to the editor would not suffice to undo the potential damage caused by publication of this industry propaganda piece in a journal sponsored by the American Medical Association.

Since the journal refused to retract the paper despite what I suspect was a flawed peer-review process, the journal should change the paper’s title to accurately reflect its contents (e.g., “Radiofrequency radiation and cancer: Telecom industry talking points”). Moreover, the journal should publish a companion piece written by experts independent of the industry so the journal’s readers are not misled by an article replete with industry sound bites.

My critique of the Grimes paper can be found at: https://bit.ly/GrimesRebuttal.


Also see the following links to articles and letters critiquing Grimes’ paper:

Microwave News. Four Reasons Why David Grimes’s RF-Cancer Review Must Be Retracted: Open Letter to Editor-in-Chief, AMA Journals. January 18, 2022
Paul D. Thacker. Experts Blast David Robert Grimes for His Failure to Understand Science and Love of Self-Citation. The Disinformation Chronicle and Journal of Scientific Practice and Integrity. January 18, 2022Paul D. Thacker. Physicist David Robert Grimes Finds Conspiracies Everywhere. The Disinformation Chronicle, December 7, 2021

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Kent Chamberlin. Letter to Dr. Mary Disis, JAMA Oncology Editor. January 5, 2022

Joel M. Moskowitz, Ph.D., Director
Center for Family and Community Health
School of Public Health
University of California, Berkeley

Electromagnetic Radiation Safety

Website:          https://www.saferemr.com

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Twitter:            @berkeleyprc