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|Dr. Klaper, Associate Professor, School of Freshwater Sciences, University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee.|
Researchers at The School of Freshwater Science, University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, USA, are using NanoSight Nanoparticle Tracking Analysis (NTA) from Malvern Instruments to investigate the effects of nanoparticle contaminants on freshwater organisms. The work, which is at the forefront of nanotoxicity testing, has focused on using the unique size, concentration and visualization capabilities provided by NTA to monitor how specific changes in nanoparticle surface chemistry influence the impact of the particles on molecular species in environmental media. NTA is used as part of an ensemble of analytical techniques that includes Dynamic Light Scattering (DLS) with the Malvern Zetasizer Nano, which is used for its sizing capabilities and to monitor overall formulation stability.
"The goal of our research is to provide a greater understanding of the influence of nanomaterials on the environment and advance the scientific theory that underpins nanoparticle health and safety," said Dr. Klaper, Associate Professor, School of Freshwater Sciences, University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee. "Nanoparticles present unique challenges to toxicity testing compared with testing for chemical contaminants because of their particulate nature and novel behaviors. Nanoparticle Tracking Analysis has provided us with an instantaneous way of looking at the behavior of the nanoparticles within a biological medium, providing insight unachievable with alternative analysis techniques."
NanoSight NTA, now part of Malvern Instruments' nanoparticle characterization portfolio, is a unique method of characterizing nanoparticles within solution. Each particle is individually but simultaneously analyzed by direct observation and measurement of diffusion events. This particle-by-particle methodology produces high resolution results for particle size distribution and concentration, while visual validation provides users with additional confidence in their data. Both particle size and concentration are measured. Used in concert with additional characterization techniques, such as the Zetasizer Nano, this holistic approach to characterization provides the breadth of analytical data required to inform the emerging health and safety aspect of nanomaterials before they are released into the environment.
"NTA has allowed us to really focus on how variations among nanoparticles, such as small changes in the surface chemistry, correlate to their behavior within an environmental medium and their interactions within organisms. One of the great things about the Nanoparticle Tracking Analysis system is the unique visualization capability which enables real time empirical insight into key particle behavior, such as the propensity and rate of aggregation, as opposed to alternative techniques with often lengthy procedures."
The research performed by Dr. Klaper and her team is only the first stage in optimizing the potential of the NanoSight NTA system, which has found widespread use in other areas for its unique capability to measure exosomes. "We're very interested in exosome research to determine protein changes that may occur once the nanoparticle interacts with the organism," added Dr Klaper. "So we anticipate that the next stage of our research will focus on using the NTA system to investigate how proteins and exuded cellular exosomes vary over time."
To learn more about Nanoparticle Tracking Analysis, please see www.malvern.com/nanosight.
For more details about The School of Freshwater Science at The University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, please see home.freshwater.uwm.edu/klaperlab/
Malvern, Malvern Instruments, Zetasizer and NanoSight are registered trademarks of Malvern Instruments Ltd
About Malvern Instruments
Malvern provides the materials and biophysical characterization technology and expertise that enables scientists and engineers to understand and control the properties of dispersed systems. These systems range from proteins and polymers in solution, particle and nanoparticle suspensions and emulsions, through to sprays and aerosols, industrial bulk powders and high concentration slurries. Used at all stages of research, development and manufacturing, Malvern’s materials characterization instruments provide critical information that helps accelerate research and product development, enhance and maintain product quality and optimize process efficiency.
Our products reflect Malvern’s drive to exploit the latest technological innovations and our commitment to maximizing the potential of established techniques. They are used by both industry and academia, in sectors ranging from pharmaceuticals and biopharmaceuticals to bulk chemicals, cement, plastics and polymers, energy and the environment.
Malvern systems are used to measure particle size, particle shape, zeta potential, protein charge, molecular weight, mass, size and conformation, rheological properties and for chemical identification, advancing the understanding of dispersed systems across many different industries and applications.
Headquartered in Malvern, UK, Malvern Instruments has subsidiary organizations in all major European markets, North America, China, Japan and Korea, a joint venture in India, a global distributor network and applications laboratories around the world.
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