Nanotechnology Now

Our NanoNews Digest Sponsors

Heifer International

Wikipedia Affiliate Button

Home > Press > Cotton fibres instead of carbon nanotubes

Abstract:
Plant-based cellulose nanofibres do not pose a short-term health risk, especially short fibres, shows a study conducted in the context of National Research Programme "Opportunities and Risks of Nanomaterials" (NRP 64). But lung cells are less efficient in eliminating longer fibres.

Cotton fibres instead of carbon nanotubes

Bern, Switzerland | Posted on May 9th, 2015

Similar to carbon nanotubes that are used in cycling helmets and tennis rackets, cellulose nanofibres are extremely light while being extremely tear-resistant. But their production is significantly cheaper because they can be manufactured from plant waste of cotton or banana plants. "It is only a matter of time before they prevail on the market," says Christoph Weder of the Adolphe Merkle Institute at the University of Fribourg.

In the context of the National Research Programme "Opportunities and Risks of Nanomaterials" (NRP 64), he collaborated with the team of Barbara Rothen-Rutishauser to examine whether these plant-based nanofibres are harmful to the lungs when inhaled. The investigation does not rely on animal testing; instead the group of Rothen-Rutishauser developped a complex 3D lung cell system to simulate the surface of the lungs by using various human cell cultures in the test tube.

The shorter, the better

Their results (*) show that cellulose nanofibres are not harmful: the analysed lung cells showed no signs of acute stress or inflammation. But there were clear differences between short and long fibres: the lung cell system efficiently eliminated short fibres while longer fibres stayed on the cell surface.

"The testing only lasted two days because we cannot grow the cell cultures for longer," explains Barbara Rothen-Rutishauser. For this reason, she adds, they cannot say if the longer fibre may have a negative impact on the lungs in the long term. Tests involving carbon nanotubes have shown that lung cells lose their equilibrium when they are faced with long tubes because they try to incorporate them into the cell to no avail. "This frustrated phagocytosis can trigger an inflammatory reaction," says Rothen-Rutishauser. To avoid potential harm, she recommends that companies developing products with nanofibres use fibres that are short and pliable instead of long and rigid.

National Research Programme "Opportunities and Risks of Nanomaterials" (NRP 64)

The National Research Programme "Opportunities and Risks of Nanomaterials" (NRP 64) hopes to be able to bridge the gaps in our current knowledge on nanomaterials. Opportunities and risks for human health and the environment in relation to the manufacture, use and disposal of synthetic nanomaterials need to be better understood. The projects started their research work in December 2010.

Full bibliographic information
(*) C. Endes, S. Mueller, C. Kinnear et al. (2015). Fate of Cellulose Nanocrystal Aerosols Deposited on the Lung Cell Surface In Vitro. Biomacromolecules online: doi: 10.1021/acs.biomac.5b00055

####

About Swiss National Science Foundation (SNSF)
Acting on a mandate issued by the Swiss Federal Government, the Swiss National Science Foundation (SNSF) supports research undertaken inside and outside universities and fosters young scientific talent.

The Foundation Council is the governing body of the SNSF, which was founded in 1952. The Foundation Council has representatives of the scientific and research communities, the Federal Government and the cantons as well as economic and cultural institutions.

The Research Council, which is divided into four Divisions, evaluates research projects and makes decisions about awarding grants. The Local Research Commissions award fellowships for prospective researchers and assist the SNSF with the evaluation of grant applications.

The Secretariat, based in Berne, does the groundwork for the business of the Foundation and Research Councils and is responsible for administrative and financial duties.

For more information, please click here

Contacts:
Martina Stofer
0041 31 308 23 87


Prof. Barbara Rothen-Rutishauser
Adolphe Merkle Institute
University of Fribourg
Ch. des Verdiers 4
CH-1700 Fribourg
Tel.: +41 (0) 26 300 95 02

Copyright © AlphaGalileo

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

News and information

Elliot Scientific now representing Raman Imaging specialists WITec in the UK and Eire - Unique correlative analysis in one instrument: Raman/AFM, Raman/SNOM December 10th, 2018

A new 'spin' on kagome lattices: Team's findings shed new light on the presence of spin-orbit coupling and topological spin textures in kagome lattices December 9th, 2018

Milestone for bERLinPro: Photocathodes with high quantum efficiency December 8th, 2018

Harnessing the power of 'spin orbit' coupling in silicon: Scaling up quantum computation December 7th, 2018

Nanotubes/Buckyballs/Fullerenes/Nanorods

'Smart skin' simplifies spotting strain in structures: Rice U. invention can use fluorescing carbon nanotubes to reveal stress in aircraft, structures November 15th, 2018

Ultrasensitive toxic gas detector October 31st, 2018

Nanotubes may give the world better batteries: Rice U. scientists' method quenches lithium metal dendrites in batteries that charge faster, last longer October 25th, 2018

TUBALL single wall carbon nanotubes: No ecotoxicity found, unlike other carbon nanotubes October 12th, 2018

Discoveries

A new 'spin' on kagome lattices: Team's findings shed new light on the presence of spin-orbit coupling and topological spin textures in kagome lattices December 9th, 2018

Milestone for bERLinPro: Photocathodes with high quantum efficiency December 8th, 2018

Harnessing the power of 'spin orbit' coupling in silicon: Scaling up quantum computation December 7th, 2018

Iran Develops Water-Repellent Nano-Paint December 5th, 2018

Materials/Metamaterials

Iran Develops Water-Repellent Nano-Paint December 5th, 2018

GaN Rising: UC Santa Barbara electrical and computer engineering professor Umesh Mishra to deliver 63rd Annual Faculty Research Lecture November 16th, 2018

Optimization of alloy materials: Diffusion processes in nano particles decoded November 13th, 2018

Unlocking the Secrets of Metal-Insulator Transitions: X-ray photon correlation spectroscopy at NSLS-II's CSX beamline used to understand electrical conductivity transitions in magnetite November 8th, 2018

Announcements

Elliot Scientific now representing Raman Imaging specialists WITec in the UK and Eire - Unique correlative analysis in one instrument: Raman/AFM, Raman/SNOM December 10th, 2018

A new 'spin' on kagome lattices: Team's findings shed new light on the presence of spin-orbit coupling and topological spin textures in kagome lattices December 9th, 2018

Milestone for bERLinPro: Photocathodes with high quantum efficiency December 8th, 2018

Harnessing the power of 'spin orbit' coupling in silicon: Scaling up quantum computation December 7th, 2018

Interviews/Book Reviews/Essays/Reports/Podcasts/Journals/White papers

A new 'spin' on kagome lattices: Team's findings shed new light on the presence of spin-orbit coupling and topological spin textures in kagome lattices December 9th, 2018

Milestone for bERLinPro: Photocathodes with high quantum efficiency December 8th, 2018

Harnessing the power of 'spin orbit' coupling in silicon: Scaling up quantum computation December 7th, 2018

New research could fine-tune the gene scissors CRISPR December 1st, 2018

Safety-Nanoparticles/Risk management

Spectradyne Partners with Particle Technology Labs for Measurement Services December 6th, 2018

Study provides insight into how nanoparticles interact with biological systems: Findings can help scientists engineer nanoparticles that are ‘benign by design’ October 18th, 2018

TUBALL single wall carbon nanotubes: No ecotoxicity found, unlike other carbon nanotubes October 12th, 2018

Silver nanoparticles are toxic for aquatic organisms: A research team at the UPV/EHU-University of the Basque Country has analysed how zebrafish are affected in the long term by exposure to silver particles September 19th, 2018

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



  Premium Products
NanoNews-Custom
Only the news you want to read!
 Learn More
NanoStrategies
Full-service, expert consulting
 Learn More











ASP
Nanotechnology Now Featured Books




NNN

The Hunger Project