At the Crossroads of Nanotoxicology: Past Achievements and Current Challenges
AIR FORCE RESEARCH LAB WRIGHT-PATTERSON AFB OH HUMAN EFFECTIVENESS DIRECTORATE
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The exponential growth in the employment of nanomaterials NMs and the subsequent need to evaluate their safety have given rise to the field of nanotoxicology which examines the cellular consequences following exposure to nano-sized particles. Initial nanotoxicological studies were limited by a lack of both available materials and accurate biodispersion characterization tools however, the years that followed were marked by the development of enhanced capabilities on both the synthesis techniques and characterization technologies. In fact, these established NM-based tools and techniques are now standard practice for the evaluation of NM properties and their solution behavior. Paralleling advances in characterization, modifications of physical parameters, such as size, morphology, or coating, were able to individually influence the depth of NM-dependent physiological response studies. As such, a major research focus to date has been on the development of correlations between toxicological effects and specific particle original exposure and their biodynamic characteristics. While great strides have been made to advance the field, nanotoxicology is currently at a crossroads and faces a number of unique obstacles and technical limitations, such as the full descriptive requirements and standardization of dosimetry and its correlation to true exposures, rates of dissolution, surface modification dynamics for assuring to establish safety exposure limits. This review will discuss both the progress and future directions of nanotoxicology highlighting key previous research successes and identifying challenges facing the field today.
- EXPONENTIAL FUNCTIONS
- PHYSIOLOGICAL EFFECTS