Nanotechnology Now

Our NanoNews Digest Sponsors

Heifer International

Wikipedia Affiliate Button

Home > Press > When it comes to risk, not all nanomaterials are created equal

Abstract:
The size, type, and dispersion of nanomaterials could all play a role in how these materials impact human health and the environment, according to two groups of researchers at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute. In new studies, the teams found that while carbon nanotubes inhibited growth in mammalian cells, they sustained the growth of commonly occurring bacteria.

When it comes to risk, not all nanomaterials are created equal

Troy, NY | Posted on March 25th, 2007

The seemingly contradictory findings highlight the need for society to better grasp the impacts these infinitesimally small particles could have when released into the environment or the human body, the researchers said. Both results were presented at the 233rd American Chemical Society (ACS) National Meeting in Chicago, March 25-29, 2007.

In the first study, which was led by Assistant Professor of Biomedical Engineering Deanna M. Thompson, researchers examined the impact of carbon nanotubes on the growth of rat heart muscle cells to better understand how they affect mammalian cells ó and ultimately human tissue and organs. Unlike previous research that focused on the effects of nanotube clusters on cell growth, this study looked at both the impacts of clusters and related finely dispersed material composed of small bundles of nanotubes and other nanoparticulate impurities.

The researchers discovered that the finely dispersed material, despite its low concentration, inhibited animal cell growth more than larger clusters of nanotubes. Activated carbon, a commonly used nanoporous carbon material, had a lower impact on the cells than either the large aggregates or the finely dispersed material. The findings of this study were recently published in the journal Toxicology Letters.

In the second study, which was led by Anurag Sharma, assistant professor of earth and environmental sciences, researchers monitored bacterial growth in the presence of carbon nanotubes to help better understand how the introduction of nanoscale materials might impact the environment over an extended period of time. Escherichia coli (E. coli), a commonly occurring bacterium in nature, was used as the model bacterial species.

The study revealed that while the nanotubes sustained bacterial growth, they also promoted considerable elongation of the E. coli in some instances. This finding indicates that the nanotubes may have induced a stress-related impact on the biological activity of the bacteria. This elongation was not observed with other carbon nanomaterials such as activated carbon or C60 fullerenes, which are commonly referred to as "buckyballs."

"It appears that in order to see a real environmental impact of nanomaterials, a significantly long duration study similar to ours is needed to get further insight into the physiology of biological interactions in general, and bacterial interactions in particular," said Pavan Raja a doctoral candidate in chemical and biological engineering who worked on both research teams.

Taken together, the two studies suggest that different nanomaterials and associated parameters could have widely different impacts on human health and the environment. "These findings highlight the underlying need for further research to correlate in detail the different types of nanomaterials and their modes of interaction with biological systems, to promote safe and optimized applications of nanotechnology," said Raja.

For the first study, Raja worked under Thompson's leadership along with several other Rensselaer researchers: senior biomedical engineering student Jennifer Connolley; research engineer Gopal P. Ganesan; postdoctoral research associate Lijie Ci, Professor and former Vice President of Research Omkaram Nalamasu; and Pulickel M. Ajayan, the Henry Burlage Professor of Materials Science and Engineering

For the second study, Raja worked with Ganesan under the lead of Sharma, Nalamasu, and Ajayan.

[NOTE TO EDITORS: ENVR 23, "Microbial interactions of carbon nanomaterials," will be presented March 25 at 4:10 p.m., McCormick Place South, Room S403A, Level 4. INOR 536, "Impact of carbon nanomaterial size regimes on smooth muscle cell growth," will be presented March 26 at 3:50 p.m., McCormick Place Lakeside, Room E253D, Level 2.]

####

About Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute
About Rensselaer Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, founded in 1824, is the nationís oldest technological university. The university offers bachelorís, masterís, and doctoral degrees in engineering, the sciences, information technology, architecture, management, and the humanities and social sciences. Institute programs serve undergraduates, graduate students, and working professionals around the world. Rensselaer faculty are known for pre-eminence in research conducted in a wide range of fields, with particular emphasis in biotechnology, nanotechnology, information technology, and the media arts and technology. The Institute is well known for its success in the transfer of technology from the laboratory to the marketplace so that new discoveries and inventions benefit human life, protect the environment, and strengthen economic development.

For more information, please click here

Contacts:
Gabrielle DeMarco

518-276-6542

Copyright © Rensselaer Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute

If you have a comment, please Contact us.

Issuers of news releases, not 7th Wave, Inc. or Nanotechnology Now, are solely responsible for the accuracy of the content.

Bookmark:
Delicious Digg Newsvine Google Yahoo Reddit Magnoliacom Furl Facebook

Related News Press

Discoveries

Ultracold atom waves may shed light on rogue ocean killers: Rice quantum experiments probe underlying physics of rogue ocean waves April 27th, 2017

Looking for the quantum frontier: Beyond classical computing without fault-tolerance? April 27th, 2017

Metal nanoparticles induced visible-light photocatalysis: Mechanisms, applications, ways of promoting catalytic activity and outlook April 27th, 2017

Geoffrey Beach: Drawn to explore magnetism: Materials researcher is working on the magnetic memory of the future April 25th, 2017

Announcements

Ultracold atom waves may shed light on rogue ocean killers: Rice quantum experiments probe underlying physics of rogue ocean waves April 27th, 2017

Looking for the quantum frontier: Beyond classical computing without fault-tolerance? April 27th, 2017

Metal nanoparticles induced visible-light photocatalysis: Mechanisms, applications, ways of promoting catalytic activity and outlook April 27th, 2017

Arrowhead Pharmaceuticals to Webcast Fiscal 2017 Second Quarter Results April 27th, 2017

Environment

NanoMONITOR shares its latest developments concerning the NanoMONITOR Software and the Monitoring stations April 21st, 2017

Wood filter removes toxic dye from water April 21st, 2017

Making Batteries From Waste Glass Bottles: UCR researchers are turning glass bottles into high performance lithium-ion batteries for electric vehicles and personal electronics April 19th, 2017

Shedding light on the absorption of light by titanium dioxide April 14th, 2017

Safety-Nanoparticles/Risk management

NanoMONITOR shares its latest developments concerning the NanoMONITOR Software and the Monitoring stations April 21st, 2017

NIST updates 'sweet' 1950s separation method to clean nanoparticles from organisms January 27th, 2017

Nanoparticle exposure can awaken dormant viruses in the lungs January 17th, 2017

Investigating the impact of natural and manmade nanomaterials on living things: Center for Environmental Implications of Nanotechnology develops tools to assess current and future risk January 9th, 2017

Events/Classes

Arrowhead Pharmaceuticals to Webcast Fiscal 2017 Second Quarter Results April 27th, 2017

National Conference on Nanomaterials, (NCN-2017) April 21st, 2017

Nanomechanics, Inc. Unveils New Product at ICMCTF Show April 25th: Nanoindentation experts will launch the new Gemini that measures the interaction of two objects that are sliding across each other Ė not merely making contact April 21st, 2017

Forge Nano 2017: 1st Quarter Media Update April 20th, 2017

NanoNews-Digest
The latest news from around the world, FREE



  Premium Products
NanoNews-Custom
Only the news you want to read!
 Learn More
NanoTech-Transfer
University Technology Transfer & Patents
 Learn More
NanoStrategies
Full-service, expert consulting
 Learn More











ASP
Nanotechnology Now Featured Books




NNN

The Hunger Project