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Critical issues in the evaluation of possible adverse pulmonary effects resulting from airborne nanoparticles.

Shvedova-AA; Sager-T; Murray-AR; Kisin-E; Porter-DW; Leonard-SS; Schwegler-Berry-D; Robinson-VA; Castranova-V
Nanotoxicology: characterization, dosing and health effects. Monteiro-Riviere NA, Tran CL, eds. New York: Informa Healthcare, 2007 Jul; :225-236
Nanotechnology is the manipulation of matter on a near-atomic scale to produce new structures, materials, and devises. Engineered nanoparticles are defined as having at least one dimension <IOOnm. Because of their small size, nanoparticles have a high particle surface area/mass and exhibit physicochemical properties that differ dramatically from fine-sized particles of the same composition. These unique properties are being exploited for a number of applications, including integrated sensors, semiconductors, structural materials, drug delivery systems, medical imaging, sunscreens, cosmetics, and coatings. Therefore, nanotechnology has the ability to transform many industries from manufacturing to medicine. By 2015, the National Science Foundation estimates that nanotechnology will have a US $1 trillion impact on the global economy and employ 2 million workers, 1 million of which may be in the United States. Since nanoparticles are engineered to exhibit unique physicochemical properties, it would be reasonable to expect that these nanoparticles would interact with biological systems in ways that may be dramatically different from fine-sized particles of the same composition. The Royal Society and Royal Academy of Engineering recognized the challenge of predicting whether exposure to nanoparticles would be a health concern, which route(s) of entry should be avoided, and which nanoparticle exposures should be controlled. If nanoparticles become airborne during production or use, the effects of pulmonary exposure require evaluation. Thus, far little information is available concerning airborne levels of nanoparticles in the nanotechnology industry. Maynard, et. al., reported that respirable airborne dust levels in laboratory settings producing single-walled carbon nanotubes (SWCNT) by either a high-pressure carbon monoxide (HiPCO) or laser ablation process were generally low, 53 microg/m3. However, peaks were noted during certain handling processes. In addition, laboratory studies indicate that airborne levels of SWCNT can be increased significantly by agitation, i.e., using a vortex shaker or a fluidized bed generator. Therefore, airborne levels in nanotechnology workplaces would depend on the energetics of the processes involved during production and use as well as the presence of control systems. Given that aerosolization of nanoparticles is possible, adverse respiratory effects are a concern. This chapter will review some properties of nanoparticles, which are critical issues for investigation of pulmonary toxicology. These issues include: deposition, interstitialization, translocation, role of surface area, and role of oxidant stress in the pulmonary toxicity of nanoparticles.
Exposure-levels; Analytical-methods; Analytical-processes; Analytical-Method; Particle-aerodynamics; Particulate-dust; Particulate-sampling-methods; Air-quality-measurement; Air-sampling-techniques; Laboratory-equipment; Laboratory-workers; Work-areas; Work-environment; Worker-health; Pulmonary-function; Pulmonary-function-tests; Pulmonary-system; Lung; Lung-function; Laboratories; Medical-equipment; Medical-research; Coatings; Drugs; Drug-therapy; Structural-analysis; Materials-transport; Sunscreening-agents; Cosmetics-industry; Nanotechnology
7440-44-0; 630-08-0
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Monteiro-Riviere-NA; Tran-CL
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Nanotoxicology: characterization, dosing and health effects
Page last reviewed: September 2, 2020
Content source: National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health Education and Information Division