Successful kick off meeting for the new LIFE project NanoEXPLORE

The Life NanoEXPLORE project addresses current data gaps and barriers limiting the implementation of REACH regulation and the use of human bio-monitoring data in the protection of human health and the environment when dealing with particles in the nanometer range.  

At the project’s kick off meeting held in Athens, Greece on 4 October 2018 participants discussed how this goal could be achieved.

By combining long series of robust data on the concentration of engineered nanomaterials (ENMs) measured by a wireless sensor network (WSN) of monitoring devices, appropriate biomarkers, and a tailored designed data management application, this approach addresses current environmental, health and safety questions about ENMs, providing stakeholders from government, industry, NGOs or the general public with reliable data.

Overall aim of LIFE NanoEXPLORE project is to develop and demonstrate the feasibility of an integrated approach to conduct biomonitoring studies, characterise exposure levels and elucidate possible health effects deriving from exposure to ENM in indoor workplaces and urban areas.

The project objectives feature:

  • Development a wireless sensor network of 20 unattended, low cost, portable and battery powered monitoring devices
  • Development of a web-based data management tool aimed at supporting health surveillance
  • Defining and validating a panel of candidate biomarkers of nanomaterial exposure
  • Risk analysis of possible effects on human health
  • Refinement of the current Recommended Exposure Limits for metal oxides and low soluble carbon-based materials
  • Validation and demonstration of the feasibility of the NanoEXPLORE approach for the risk assessment of ENMs in Europe.

Dr. Athena Progiou, Director Research and Development of Alcon Consultant Engineers and project coordinator, explains the expected impact of NanoEXPLORE:

“NanoEXPLORE is a challenging project. Our consortium is multidisciplinary, bringing together biologists, medical doctors, physicists, chemists and engineers, and we are all committed to succeed. We strongly believe that the project will have a considerable impact on i) improving and updating current EU policies (REACH, EU Air Quality legislation, SEVESO III etc.), ii) identifying the concentration of ENMS in indoor workplaces and urban areas, iii) providing validated biomarkers to monitor ENMs health adverse effects, iv) contributing to reduce the amount of ENMs released and v) raising awareness regarding ENMs effects on air quality and human health.”

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