An integrated approach toward understanding the environmental fate, transport, toxicity, and health hazards of nanomaterials.
Nanoscience and nanotechnology: environmental and health impacts. Grassian VH, ed. Hoboken, NJ: Wiley, 2008 Jan; :43-68
Nanoscience and nanotechnology offer new opportunities for making superior materials for use in industrial, environmental, and health applications. As nanomaterials continue to develop and become more widespread, we can expect that these manufactured materials have the potential to get into the environment sometime during production, distribution, use or disposal, that is, sometime during the life cycle of these materials. There are now over 500 nano-based products commercially available and a number of toxicological studies are being done to ensure the safety of these materials. With the introduction of this new area in toxicology, nanotoxicology, databases have been created to catalog existing research in addition to keeping updated information of ongoing work in the field. The knowledge base on nanotoxicity and risks associated with nanomaterials has been growing due to an increase in the number of nanomaterials and nanomaterial-based consumer goods that are becoming commercially available. Databases that include the International Council on Nanotechnology (ICON) (Rice University), Project on Emerging Nanotechnologies (Woodrow Wilson International Center), Nanoparticle Information Library (NIOSH), Nanoscale Science and Engineering Center (University of Wisconsin, Madison), SAFENANO (Institute of Occupational Medicine), and Nanomedicine Research Portal are being compiled to provide accessible information on the latest scientific data. These databases, listed in Table 3.1 along with website information, are helpful tools for identifying the latest results on a number of environmental health, safety, and toxicity studies that have been conducted on a broad range of nanomaterials.