Google is facing scrutiny over the potential health risks associated with using its Android mobile operating system to power its own products.
In an experiment published Monday in the journal Science Translational Medicine, researchers used air-purified water to test the health effects of high levels of electron-transport in the bloodstream.
While it is unclear exactly how many people would die, the researchers found that even the lowest dose of electron transfer could cause serious complications, especially if it’s delivered to the lungs.
The researchers say the results provide “strong evidence that air-pumping systems in general, and electron transport systems in particular, may pose a serious risk to human health.”
Google, however, maintains that air pollution is not a health threat, and it has spent decades developing and testing the technology that powers its operating systems, including the Android operating system.
The company says it does not know what levels of airborne particles or dust particles cause the health issues, but says its own tests show that its air-breathing devices are no more likely to cause lung disease than the air in which people breathe.
The company says its air filters use carbon monoxide, and has made air purifiers available to health-conscious customers in its offices and warehouses.
The tests found that the air purifier, while effective at preventing airborne particles from entering the lungs, was no more effective at cleaning up the air or cleaning the lungs than the carbon monolactic acid that’s commonly used in commercial air purifying equipment.
Google has spent millions of dollars on research on the health risks of airborne particulate matter, including tests of its air purification devices and its air pollution-control systems.
The new study was led by a team of researchers from the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center in Dallas.
The team found that, while the levels of atmospheric electron-transfer particles in air were lower than the levels reported in the previous studies, they were still higher than the exposure levels reported for workers in industrial plants.
This means that the health benefits of air-transporting devices may not be as substantial as previously thought.
“We did not see significant differences in lung function or mortality between the control and experimental groups, even at concentrations as high as 1 microgram/m3,” lead researcher David Krieger said in a statement.
“This is because of the large number of people exposed to this concentration and the lower air levels that we measured.”
The researchers also found that there was no significant difference in the lung function of people who were exposed to low levels of air pollution and those who were not.
The study does not include information about people who lived in areas with high levels or low levels in air pollution.
“Our findings highlight that air purging devices that remove particle particles from the atmosphere may be a feasible alternative to traditional air pollution control systems for removing CO 2 and particulate emissions from industrial and residential settings,” said lead author Dr. Jeffrey Hannon.
“While it is important to note that the current study does NOT provide direct evidence that these air purges are a safe alternative to existing air purifications, it does highlight the need for more research to explore these systems as potential future solutions.”