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Posted: Dec 08, 2011
Danish EPA funds NanoRiskCat - a conceptual decision support tool for nanomaterials
(Nanowerk News) In this project funded by the Danish EPA the Technical University of Denmark and National Research Centre for the Working Environment has initiated the development of a screening tool called NanoRiskCat (NRC) for the evaluation of exposure and hazard of nanomaterials contained in products for professional and private use.
The aim was to identify, categorize and rank the possible exposure and hazards associated with a nanomaterial in a product. NanoRiskCat is using a stepwise approach based on existing data on the conventional form of the chemical as well as the data that may exist on the nanoform. However, the tool still needs to be further validated and tested on a series of various nano products in order to adjust and optimize the concept and thereby to achieve a screening tool as informative and practical as possible.
It is the view of the Danish EPA that the traffic light ranking of the health effects may be further modified to obtain a better ranking in the various categories. Thus titanium dioxide in sunscreen is ranked as red due to lung effects of titanium dioxide, because the tool in its present form does not sufficiently take account of which type of health effects that are most relevant for the most relevant exposure route of the product. In this case the inhalational exposure of titanium dioxide from a sun screen seems less relevant.