Manage nanomaterial risk with bespoke hazard testing

As nanomaterials continue to evolve and their use rapidly expands, fast and reliable hazard identification and assessment is needed to protect human health.  

At the forefront of bespoke nanomaterial testing, IOM is addressing the hazards that exposure presents whether through inhaling, ingesting, or touching.  

With clear and timely results, their evidence-based approach supports clients to keep their workforce safe, as well as the public and the environment, whilst enabling them to innovate and develop. 

Discover IOM’s extensive nanomaterial testing capabilities today, improve your understanding, and minimise your risk no matter your industry. 

Why the risk needs to be managed

With an external dimension or internal dimension/structure in the nanoscale, far different from their bulky counterparts, huge potential has opened-up for the use of engineered nanomaterials across a variety of industries including optics, electronics, manufacturing, cosmetics, and the medical field. 

This rapid acceleration and development, along with often unique chemical and physical properties, means they often present an undetermined potential for adverse effects upon human health and a growing occupational concern. 

Whilst there are no agreed WEL’s for nanomaterials, their manufacture and use are regulated under the Control of Substances Hazardous to Health Regulations 2002 (COSHH) whereby employers are obliged to protect their staff from exposure; there are, however, a growing number of recommended exposure limits for certain nanomaterials, including CNTs, fullerenes, Ag, and TiO2, as well as for quite generalised categories such as HARN and biopersistent/poorly soluble nanomaterials. 

More information about how IOM can offer regulatory support can be found here.

As a new technology, HSE’s advice when it comes to nanomaterials is to take a precautionary approach to all areas of risk management. 

To continue innovating, developing, and using these materials it is critical to ensure their safety, by testing, evaluating exposure, and minimising risk.  

Supporting this, many organisations are striving to achieve EU Chemical Strategy objectives to stay ahead of regulation and ensure that they can continue to be competitive for larger contracts. 

These aim to deliver a safer, more sustainable way of working and are focused around: 

  • Innovative, safe, and sustainable chemical design 
  • Reduction of animal testing 
  • Improved speed, quality, and efficiency of chemical hazard and risk assessments

A scientific approach

Boasting a wealth of scientific and engineering experience and a trusted reputation, IOM is a leader in the understanding, assessment and control of hazards in the workplace.. Working alongside clients and research groups to create safe, healthy, and compliant environments. 

Collaborating with UK and EU research groups, and the scientific community, IOM is in a unique position to offer comprehensive nanomaterial testing based on the latest regulatory developments and scientific understanding. 

This up-to-date approach means that businesses are far better placed ensure their workers are safe, and to meet REACH and CLP regulations, test, and develop products appropriately.

Nanomaterial Testing Methods 

Harmful exposure to nanomaterials occurs in a variety of ways from cleaning operations, equipment maintenance, weighing and mixing, packaging, accidental spillage, and incorrect disposal. 

Using in vitro, ex vivo, and in silico techniques IOM assess the toxicological hazard of chemicals, nanomaterials, nano-enabled products, or advanced materials to determine where the threat to health lies. 

Efficient and trusted New Approach Methods (NAMs) are applied to assess hazards posed from inhalation, dermal, and ingestion exposure to nanomaterials, including, but are not limited to: 

  • Cytotoxicity/viability 
  • Measurement of pro-inflammatory mediators (and other cell signalling processes)
  • Measurement of reactive oxygen species and oxidative stress 
  • Assessment of material solubility (dissolution, bioelution, bioaccessibility, bioavailability) 

Thanks to a multi-disciplinary approach, IOM can test either as an individual service, or as part of a bespoke testing suite in consultation with the client regarding a specific question/outcome, or to meet regulatory compliance. 

This service is supported by IOM’s in-house professional team who provide clear and independent guidance around the test findings, risk assessment, control measures, and regulations. 

Act Now  

Nanomaterials present endless possibilities for a range of industries and consumer products, but in turn they present a risk to human health and the environment, the true nature of which currently remains unknown. 

IOM’s hazard testing capabilities, alongside reliable material characterisation, ensure that clients can develop products using nanomaterials safely, avoid potential toxic hazards, and stay compliant.  

Discover more about IOM’s solutions today.