Objectives: Exposure to active mobile phones (MP) has been shown to affect human neural function as shown by the electroencephalogram (EEG). Although it has not been determined whether such effects are harmful, a number of devices have been developed that attempt to minimize these MP-related effects. One such device, the Q Link Ally (QL; Clarus Products, International, L.L.C., San Rafael, CA), is argued to affect the human organism in such a way as to attenuate the effect of MPs. The present pilot study was designed to determine whether there is any indication that QL does alter MP-related effects on the human EEG.
Design: Twenty-four (24) subjects participated in a single-blind, fully counterbalanced crossover design in which subjects' resting EEG and phase-locked neural responses to auditory stimuli were assessed under conditions of either active MP or active MP plus QL.
Results: The addition of QL to the MP condition increased resting EEG in the gamma range and did so as a function of exposure duration, and it attenuated MP-related effects in the delta and alpha range (at trend-level). The addition of the QL also affected phase-locked neural responses, with a laterality reversal in the alpha range and an alteration to changes over time in the delta range, a reduction of the MP-related beta decrease over time at fronto-posterior sites, and a global reduction in the gamma range that increased as a function of exposure duration. No unambiguous relations were found between these changes and either performance or psychologic state.
Conclusions: This pilot study suggests that the addition of the QL to active MP-exposure does affect neural function in humans, altering both resting EEG patterns and the evoked neural response to auditory stimuli, and that there is a tendency for some MP-related changes to the EEG to be attenuated by the QL.