The use of nanosilver in medical and consumer products is expected to increase. While recent reviews suggest that nanosilver may not be hazardous to humans and may result in low internal exposure data remain insufficient to carry out a full risk assessment. In addition, indirect adverse effects on human health may occur via an increasing resistance of micro-organisms against silver, including nanosilver and silver based compounds. This may limit the usefulness of nanosilver in medical devices and other medical applications.
On this basis, the European Commission asked its Scientific Committee on Emerging and Newly Identified Health Risks (SCENIHR) to assess whether the use of nanosilver, in particular in medical care and in consumer products could result in additional risks compared to more traditional uses of silver. Furthermore, the SCENIHR is asked to assess whether the use of nanosilver to control bacterial growth could result in resistance of micro-organisms...
The effects of new technologies on health must be assessed and nanomaterials must be covered by current EU health and safety rules, says a resolution, passed on Thursday, on a mid-term review of the EU's 2007-2012 health and safety at work strategy...
On December 16, the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) has released 3 additional publications on its series on safety of manufactured nanomaterials:
n°30: Regulated Nanomaterials: 2006-2009 - The document presents the analysis of the information obtained from the Questionnaire on Regulated Nanomaterials: 2006-2009 issued August 27th, 2010 by the WPMN project on Co-operation on Voluntary Schemes and Regulatory Programmes.
n°31: Information gathering schemes on nanomaterials: lessons learned and reported information - This report summarises the results obtained from the second (2010) Information Gathering Schemes questionnaire of the project on Co-operation on Voluntary Schemes and Regulatory Programmes on Nanomaterials.
n°32: National activities on life cycle assessment of nanomaterials - This document compiles information on national activities on life cycle assessment and nanotechnologies provided by delegations. It is intended to provide a “snapshot” of information on activities related to the Life Cycle Assessment of Manufactured nanomaterials at the national and international level. As a living document, it is expected to be updated as new information becomes available.
The 5th report of the European Observatory on NanoSafety (EONS) offers a review of selected articles from the recent NanoEHS literature. This expert analysis has been performed by partners of the ENPRA consortium together with French experts of the Observatoire des Micro & Nanotechnologies (OMNT) at the 5th ENPRA/EONS expert panel meeting held in Paris on October 13, 2011.
As part of the dissemination strategy of the ENPRA project, EONS reports contribute to inform stakeholders of the latest nanoEHS research advances thanks to the expert survey of the domain. To download the full report click here. Excerpts from previous EONS reports are accessible on the ENPRA website.
The National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) has issued the world’s first reference material for single-wall carbon nanotube soot. Distantly related to the soot in your fireplace or in a candle flame, nanotube-laden soot is the primary industrial source of single-wall carbon nanotubes, perhaps the archetype of all nanoscale materials. The new NIST material offers companies and researchers a badly needed source of uniform and well-characterized carbon nanotube soot for material comparisons, as well as chemical and toxicity analysis...
Japan’s Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry (METI) established a Committee on Safety Management for Nanomaterials, which was scheduled to hold its first meeting on December 2, 2011. METI states that it established the Committee “on the basis of the results obtained from the project ‘Research and Development of Nanoparticle Characterization Methods’ commissioned by the New Energy and Industrial Technology Development Organization (NEDO) and the latest scientific knowledge.” The Committee will focus on risks caused by nanomaterials, and study appropriate management procedures for nanomaterials considering the actual usage and life cycles. According to Japan’s November 30, 2011, press release, the Committee will compile an interim report “around spring to summer in 2012.”
Workers with existing allergic conditions have worse reactions when exposed to nanoparticles in the workplace, suggest Chinese scientists. They believe that the response is caused by a Trojan horse known as an exosome, which is present in all of us...
Related article: "Exosomes as Extrapulmonary Signaling Conveyors for Nanoparticle-Induced Systemic Immune Activation" by Zhu et al. Small (Early View)
On February 8 and 9, 2012, the German Federal Institute for Risk Assessment (BfR) is holding a scientific conference on the health risk assessment of nanosilver. The aim of the conference is to provide an overview of the current scientific state regarding the production and application of nanosilver in consumer products and food. Therefore, all major aspects will be taken into account like identity, analytical characterisation and exposure, toxicology, bacterial resistance and biocidal efficacy, risk assessment and data gaps.
The conference language will be English. Simultaneous translation for German and English will be provided on both days...
The Innovation Society, St.Gallen and Marsh is organizing its second, free-of-charge webinar on February 23rd 2012 (16.00-17.00). Manufacturers and distributors of nanomaterials and nano-based products as well as retail companies, insurances and investors are invited to attend the webinar…
The French Agency for Food, Environmental and Occupational Health and Safety (ANSES) is establishing a new working group on «Nanomaterials & Health - Food Environement & Work» and is soliciting nominations for experts to serve on this working group. Dealdine for application is January 27, 2012. For more information click here (Article in French).
The European Journal of Law and Technology (EJLT) Special issue on the regulation of nanotechnology is now officially online. The issue and all contributions can be accessed at http://ejlt.org//index. The issue contains 15 contributions that canvass some of the most pressing philosophical, ethical and regulatory questions currently being debated around the world in relation to nanotechnologies and more specifically nanomaterials.