Given the increasingly vast and varied array of engineered nanomaterials (ENMs) being utilized in industry, incorporated into consumer products, and employed in medical imaging and therapeutic applications, understanding the relationships between their physicochemical properties and biointeractions is critical and will help in reducing the still great risk uncertainty surrounding ENMs. In response to this RFA, we propose to establish the ?Engineered Nanomaterial Synthesis, Characterization and Method Development Coordination Center for Nano-safety Research?. Our proposed Center builds upon the infrastructure and interdisciplinary experience of existing academic research centers in the fields of ENM synthesis, characterization and nano-safety research. The infrastructure in these collaborating centers, developed over the past 15 years, includes an inter-disciplinary research group of faculty, researchers and students, as well as state-of-the-art platforms for high throughput synthesis of ENMs, including metal and metal oxides, cutting edge 2D/3D ENMs such as CNTs and graphene, nanocellulose, and advanced nanocomposites, coupled with innovative tools to assess the fate of ENMs in biological systems, statistical and exposure assessment tools, and novel in vitro/in-vivo platforms for nanotoxicology. The research outlined in this proposal extends beyond timely and cost-effective synthesis and characterization of reference ENMs and coordination services for the NHIR consortium community.
We aim to work across disciplines, share new ideas, develop industry-relevant reference ENMs, and work with the consortium to develop multidisciplinary projects and standardized methods to advance our understanding of nano-EHS issues. The work will be accomplished through a number of highly interconnected cores/aims and research projects: 1) ENM synthesis Core: It will provide an extensive array of well-characterized, industry- relevant ENMs that cover both conventional and emerging advanced 2D/3D ENMs; 2)ENM Characterization Core: it will provide complete physicochemical characterization using state of the art instruments and analytical methods; 3) Reference ENM repository Core: Management of the reference ENM repository will include storage and distribution of ENMs to the consortium, assessment of property transformations and purity over time and development of optimized storage strategies and QA/QC procedures; 4) Method Development Core: It will develop standardized methods for dispersion preparation and characterization for toxicology studies, develop advanced dosimetry tools for fate and transport of ENMs in biological media, including corona characterization methods, and develop chemical and radio-tracing techniques to be used by nanotoxicology community to track biodistribution and translocation of ENMs in cellular and animal models; 5) Administration and Research Coordination Core: This core will provide oversight and coordination of all center investigators and core activities and coordinate research activities among consortium members.

Public Health Relevance

A large and diverse array of engineered nanomaterials (ENMs) are being utilized in industry, incorporated into consumer products, and employed in medical imaging and therapeutic applications, and understanding the relationships between the physicochemical properties of nanomaterials and their biological effects is critical. Although there have been numerous reports of nanomaterial effects for small numbers of specific nanomaterial types, a comprehensive and systematic study across the full range of nanomaterial types and properties of effects in diverse biological systems has yet to be undertaken, and is long overdue. In support of this goal, we propose to manufacture and characterize industry relevant reference ENMs and develop necessary standardized methodologies required for nanosafety assessment.

National Institute of Health (NIH)
National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences (NIEHS)
Resource-Related Research Projects--Cooperative Agreements (U24)
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Special Emphasis Panel (ZES1)
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Nadadur, Srikanth
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Harvard University
Public Health & Prev Medicine
Schools of Public Health
United States
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