Nanotechnology and food
Research developing methods for the detection of nanoparticles in food, assessing their safety in food, and considering possible applications in food contact materials.
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This research project reviewed the use of nanotechnology in food contact materials and articles, and assessed applications in relation to consumer safety and regulatory implications in the UK.
Assessment of the potential use of nanomaterials as food additives or food ingredients in relation to consumer safety and regulatory controls
The main aims of the study were to collate information on the current and projected use of nanomaterials as food additives or food ingredients, and to identify potential implications for consumer safety and regulatory frameworks.
Human in vivo and in vitro studies on gastrointestinal absorption of nanoparticles: the effect of size and surface properties (ongoing)
This research project aims to study the toxicokinetics of oral absorption of nanoparticles in human volunteers and will also consider the effect of different particle size, chemistry and surface properties on the absorption of nanoparticles using an in vitro model. The results will establish how size and chemistry affects the behaviour of particles in the acidic environment of the stomach.
As the production of engineered nanoparticles (ENP) is a relatively new field, there are few established methods for the detection and characterisation of ENP, so there is an urgent need for analytical methods that allow the routine detection of ENP in food.
This project will generate baseline data on the toxicokinetics of titanium dioxide nanoparticles as a basis for future studies. The in vitro work will assess the potential of titanium dioxide nanoparticles to cross the gut epithelial barrier. The in vivo study will be used to generate absorption, distribution, metabolism and excretion data, which will be validated for future safety assessments.