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Rocz Panstw Zakl Hig. 2009;60(2):101-11.

[Nanotechnology--possibilities and hazards].

[Article in Polish]

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Zakład Toksykologii Srodowiskowej, Narodowy Instytut Zdrowia Publicznego-Państwowy Zakład Higieny, Warszawa.


Nanoparticles are the objects with at least one demension smaller than 100 nm. Nanoparticles exist in nature or can be produced by human activities, intentionally or unintentionally. Nanotechnology is an emerging science involving manipulation of matter at nanometer scale. Nanoparticles find numerous applications in many fields, starting with electronics, throught medicine, cosmetology, and ending with automotive industry and construction industry. Depending on the use of nanoparticles, the routes of exposure may be inhalation, dermal, oral or parenteral. Nanoparticles have a greater active surface area per unit mass than larger particles. Together with an increase of surface area, toxicity and potential health effects may also increase. Toxicity of nanoparticles depend on many factors, for example: size, shape, chemical composition, solubility, surface area and surface charge. Risk assessment related to human health, should be integrated at all stages of the life cycle of the nanotechnology, starting at the point of conception and including research and development, manufacturing, distribution, use and disposal or recycling.

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