Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT)
Abstract title: Informing the public on safety aspects of nanomaterials – DaNa2.0
Topic: Policy frameworks and societal aspects
Abstract: Nanomaterials have found their way in our every day life, but the awareness of possible risks for humans and the environment increased during the last 15 years. The nanosafety aspect is a topic around the world. However, consumers often miss reliable and understandable information on nanomaterials and their application, and don’t know where to get such information. There is a high demand for answers to questions such as “Are nanomaterials per se dangerous?”.
Communication of scientific facts with the public is an ambitious task as complex issues need to be simplified whilst ensuring scientific correctness. Due to the multidisciplinary nature of nanotechnology, communication on the related safety aspects is particularly challenging. The DaNa2.0 project (data and knowledge on nanomaterials) is addressing these challenges by collecting and evaluating scientific results with a tool for quality evaluation and management of scientific publications: “Methodology for selection of publications”. This checklist includes mandatory and desirable assessment criteria covering the topics physico-chemical characterisation, sample preparation and necessary (biological) testing parameters ensuring a thorough, comprehensive and fit-for-purpose assessment of the used nanomaterial in any given setting.
These evaluated research findings are presented in a worldwide unique knowledge base, correlating material properties and applications, tailored to interested citizens, students and stakeholders. The platform www.nanoobjects.info offers reliable data on the 26 most widely used nanomaterials together with answers to frequent questions, as well as on cross-cutting topics like nanomedicine.
DaNa2.0 is a national project funded by the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research (FKZ 03X0131).
SINTEF Materials and Chemistry
Abstract title: Ultrasound-enhanced drug delivery using nanoparticle-stabilized microbubbles
Topic: Nano-enabled healthcare nano-medicine and medical technologies
Abstract: For many diseases, there is a high need for novel site focused treatments, as the most efficient drugs often lead to severe systemic toxicity or never reach the diseased tissue due to low transport through biological barriers. Focused ultrasound (US) applied at the disease site has proven promising as a non-invasive method to facilitate the transport of membrane impermeable compounds. Gas-filled microbubbles are known to greatly amplify the biophysical effects of ultrasound. However, as the effectiveness of microbubbles depends on several variables, it is essential to develop microbubbles that are tailored for therapy, instead of using commercially available contrast agent microbubbles. Currently, there are no such products on the market.
We have developed a technology platform consisting of microbubbles (MBs) stabilized by polymeric nanoparticles (NPs) incorporating multiple functionalities, including imaging and therapy, in a single system. We have recently shown that these MBs can act as contrast agents for conventional ultrasound imaging with comparable properties to commercial MBs. Then, by precise tuning of the applied ultrasound pulse, the MBs may oscillate and subsequently burst, opening biological barriers and releasing the NPs constituting the shell, resulting in increased local deposit of NPs into target tissue. In vivo efficacy studies in an orthotopic breast cancer mouse model show complete remission in all animals treated with our MBs (120 days) and low in vivo toxicity. The novel technology platform could hence be used to increase the delivery of the NPs to target cells while limiting the exposure to healthy tissue.
Instytut Technologii Elektronowej
Abstract title: Lab4MEMS-II project: Innovative multi-cantilever sensor system with MOEMS read-out
Topic: Electromechanical and fluidic systems at nano-scale
Abstract: Cantilever-based sensor system are a well-established sensor family exploited in several every-day life applications as well as in high-end research areas. The very high sensitivity of such systems and the possibility to design and functionalize the cantilevers to create purpose built and highly selective sensors have increased the interest of the scientific community and the industry in further exploiting this promising sensors type. Optical deflection detection systems for cantilever sensors provide a reliable, flexible method for reading information from cantilevers with the highest sensitivity. However the need of using multi-cantilever arrays in several fields of application such as medicine, biology or safety related areas, make the optical method less suitable due to its structural complexity. Working in the frame of a the Eniac JU project Lab4MEMS-II our group proposes a novel and innovative approach to solve this issue, by integrating a Micro-Opto-Electro-Mechanical-System (MOEMS) with dedicated optics, electronics and software with a MOEMS micro-mirror, ultimately developed in the frame of Lab4MEMS-II. In this way we are able to present a closely packed, lightweight solution combining the advantages of standard optical read-out systems with the possibility of scanning multiple read-outs from large cantilever arrays quasi simultaneously. In this presentation the general system overview will be presented along with representative measurement results from multi-cantilever arrays gathered for various resonant modes recorded for each cantilever.
Presented work has been performed under the Lab4MEMS-II project and has been financed by the ENIAC JU and NCBiR (621176-2) and by the statutory ITE project (1.02.078).