Long-term research project on safety of nanomaterials launched

Top Quote The Federal Ministry for the Environment, Nature Conservation and Nuclear Safety (BMU), the Federal Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (BAuA) and BASF SE have launched a joint safety research project. Long-term studies are planned to investigate potential chronic effects of nanoparticles in the lung. End Quote
  • (1888PressRelease) May 16, 2012 - Federal Environment Minister Dr. Norbert Röttgen welcomed this unique research collaboration: "With this large-scale project, Germany is not only assuming the global leadership in safety research for nanomaterials. This trustful cooperation between the Ministry, higher federal authorities and industry is also exemplary and unprecedented in its scope." The studies are scheduled to run for four years and comply with the testing guidelines of the OECD (Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development). Total project funding amounts to €5 million.

    "No comparable long-term studies of this scope have yet been performed to determine the impact of nanomaterials. As a company, we want to seize the enormous opportunities offered by nanotechnology. We therefore also consider it our duty to clarify open issues and close gaps in our knowledge. In this way, we assume responsibility for our actions and towards society," explained Dr. Andreas Kreimeyer, Member of the Board of Executive Directors and Research Executive Director of BASF. The chemical company has long experience in the field of nanosafety research and has internationally recognized scientific expertise. In this project, BASF will be conducting the inhalation studies. The stewardship and overall coordination of the project rests with the BMU. The detailed coordination and subsequent evaluation of the results will then be performed by the BAuA, the Federal Environment Office (UBA) and the Federal Institute for Risk Assessment (BfR) as independent competent authorities. An external advisory committee of high ranking, internationally recognized, independent scientists will be providing scientific support for the investigations.

    The goal of the study is to allow thoroughly researched statements to be made regarding the long-term effects of various important nanomaterials. One special focus is on investigating effects in the low-exposure range which are of major significance for the workplace and the environment. "This study will for the first time determine chronic effects of nanomaterials in the low-dose range. The resulting data will make it possible to estimate risks and establish limit values. With this project, we will be making a major advance in health and environment protection," said Isabel Rothe, President of the Federal Institute for Occupational Safety and Health.

    Note for the editors:
    A press photo can be downloaded shortly at www.bmu.de/48718.

    About BASF
    BASF is the world’s leading chemical company: The Chemical Company. Its portfolio ranges from chemicals, plastics, performance products and crop protection products to oil and gas. We combine economic success, social responsibility and environmental protection. Through science and innovation we enable our customers in almost all industries to meet the current and future needs of society. Our products and system solutions contribute to conserving resources, ensuring healthy food and nutrition and helping to improve the quality of life. We have summed up this contribution in our corporate purpose: We create chemistry for a sustainable future. BASF posted sales of about €73.5 billion in 2011 and had more than 111,000 employees as of the end of the year. BASF shares are traded on the stock exchanges in Frankfurt (BAS), London (BFA) and Zurich (AN). Further information on BASF is available on the Internet at www.basf.com

    About BAuA
    Research on health and safety at work
    Safe and healthy working conditions mean social progress and a competitive economy. The Federal Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (BAuA) conducts research and development in the field of safety and health at work, promotes the transfer of knowledge into practice, advises policymakers and performs sovereign functions - under hazardous substances law, in product safety and with the health data archive. The BAuA is a governmental research institution within the purview of the Federal Ministry of Labour and Social Affairs. More than 600 people are employed at the sites in Dortmund, Berlin and Dresden and at the Chemnitz field office.

    Press contact BMU
    Dr. Christiane Schwarte (head), Dr. Elke Mayer, Jürgen Maaß, Frauke Stamer, Ingo Strube
    Tel.: + 49 (0)30 18 305 2010 /-2011 /-2012 /-2014 /-2034
    E-Mail: presse ( @ ) bmu dot bund dot de

    Press contact BASF
    Birgit Lau
    Tel.: + 49 (0)621 60 20732
    E-Mail: birgit.lau ( @ ) basf dot com

    Press contact BAuA
    Jörg Feldmann
    Tel.: + 49 (0)231 9071 2330
    E-Mail: presse ( @ ) baua dot bund.de

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