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Human and environmental exposure assessment for nanomaterials: an introduction to this issue.
Int J Occup Environ Health 2010 Oct-Dec; 16(4):363-364
Determining whether a material or substance poses risk to human health depends on knowing not only the potential toxic characteristics of the material, but also the characteristics of exposure. To what concentrations are workers and general population exposed, for how long, and in what ways? Exposure assessment is particularly vital to answer the question of whether nanomaterials pose work-related health risks. Because of the relative newness of nanotechnology, as well as technical issues regarding metrics, availability of instrumentations, and questions about proprietary information, very little data on exposure to nanomaterials have been reported in the scientific literature. At this stage, measuring or determining risk becomes a little like trying to solve a mystery when major clues are missing. Scientists and engineers face this challenge even as the market for nanotechnology grows, and at the same time, there is increasing demand from diverse parties for guidance to underpin its responsible development.
Nanotechnology; Risk-analysis; Risk-factors; Hazardous-materials; Toxic-materials; Exposure-assessment; Occupational-exposure; Worker-health; Workplace-studies
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Issue of Publication
International Journal of Occupational and Environmental Health
Page last reviewed: May 5, 2020
Content source: National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health Education and Information Division