Living in a radioactive apartment reduced the risk of cancer and birth defects. The opposite of expectations.
Several apartment buildings in Taiwan were accidentally built with cement containing Cobalt-60. The mistake was not discovered until 20 years later.
Approximately 10,000 people occupied these buildings and received an average radiation dose of 0.4 Sv, unknowingly, during a 9–20 year period.
They did not suffer a higher incidence of cancer mortality, as the generally accepted LNT theory would predict. On the contrary, the incidence of cancer deaths in this population was greatly reduced—to about 3 per cent of the incidence of spontaneous cancer death in the general Taiwan public. In addition, the incidence of congenital malformations was also reduced—to about 7 per cent of the incidence in the general public.
The conventional approach for radiation protection is based on the ICRP's linear, no threshold (LNT) model of radiation carcinogenesis, which implies that ionizing radiation is always harmful, no matter how small the dose.