About NanoSafe Australia
In early 2006, NanoSafe Australia was established with grants to its coordinator from Nanotechnology Victoria Pty Ltd (NanoVic) and the RMIT School of Medical Sciences, after NanoVic initially approached the Australian Centre for Human Health Risk Assessment (ACHHRA) at Monash University about the available expertise regarding the health, safety and regulatory issues surrounding nanotechnology.
The foundation members of NanoSafe Australia are: network coordinator A/Prof. Paul Wright (RMIT University), Prof. Brian Priestly (Director, ACHHRA), A/Prof. John Edwards (Flinders University) and Dr Andrew Harford (then based at RMIT University). Currently, the network comprises 13 research groups across Australia – see the member groups and activities (PDF 158KB 7p).
This network is significant because it is Australia’s first program to deal with the considerable challenges surrounding the health and safety of nanomaterials. It involves a coordinated approach and collaborations with various specialists in diverse fields of research.
Australian toxicologists are experienced in fields of study that are directly related to the issue of nanotoxicology, such as:
- Characterisation of physico-chemical properties
- Measurement of ultra-fine particles in ambient air
- Toxicokinetics of particles
- Pre-clinical safety testing
- Immuno-, neuro- and biochemical toxicology
- Occupational and food allergy
- Occupational hygiene, OHS and workplace monitoring
- Ecotoxicology and environmental toxicology
- Ecological and human health risk assessments
The NanoSafe Australia network is forging partnerships with materials scientists, which will aid toxicology studies by characterising the specific traits of nanomaterials that are important to their bioactivity and toxicity.