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Hazard assessment of nanomaterials on immune system


The FP7 Nanommune project took place between 2008-2011, co-ordinated by Dr Bengt Fadeel of the Karolinska Institute, Sweden.

The main concept in the NANOMMUNE project is that the recognition versus non-recognition of engineered nanoparticles (ENPs) by immune-competent cells will determine the distribution as well as their toxic potential. The project aimed to to provide a comprehensive assessment of hazardous effects of engineered nanomaterials on the immune system. It assessed whether ENPs interfere with key functions of the immune system in vitro and in vivo, such as macrophage engulfment of cellular (apoptotic) debris and antigen-presentation by dendritic cells to lymphocytes. Detailed physico-chemical characterization of ENPs is also intergrated in the project.

The NANOMMUNE consortium’s work focused on:
  • the synthesis and detailed characterisation of representative classes of ENPs;
  • the monitoring of potential hazardous effects by in vitro and in vivo systems;
  • transcriptomics and oxidative lipidomics to determine nanotoxic signatures;
  • risk assessment of potential adverse effects of ENPs on human health.
Using a multidisciplinary approach, combining analytical procedures from different disciplines, NANOMMUNE established a panel of read-out systems for the prediction of the toxic potential of existing and emerging ENPs. NANOMMUNE's findings serve to enhance the understanding of possible adverse effects of nanomaterials and will hopefully contribute to a continuous and sustainable growth of the nanotechnologies.

IOM's principal focus in this project was on modelling and risk assessment of the data generated throughout the project's duration.
Based on the results of this project, a paper on risk management of nanomaterials has been published in WIREs Nanomedicine and Nanobiotechnology.

Further information, visit the Cordis webpage or contact us.

Did you know?

4 µm is the median aerodynamic diameter of particles that fall within the respirable size range.