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U.S. Department of Health and Human Services

Science & Research

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Center for Food Safety and Applied Nutrition Nanotechnology Programs

With the advance of science and technology, nanomaterials are being explored in a variety of products, both food and cosmetics, regulated by the Center for Food Safety and Applied Nutrition (CFSAN). In order to provide sound, science-based regulations and guidelines to its stakeholders, the Center has invested resources in regulatory science research focused on safety assessment.

The goal of CFSAN’s nanotechnology regulatory science research is to improve information regarding safety assessment for nanomaterials and to inform regulatory decision-making, including any development of policy and guidance on food and cosmetic products. Currently, CFSAN’s nanotechnology regulatory science research focuses on the following:

  • Characterization of nanomaterials
    Using systematic approach to understand the interaction of a variety of matrices and nanomaterials. Exploring the use of electron spin resonance spectroscopy (ESR) as a way to characterize the interaction and its possibility as a rapid screening tool;
     
  • Dermal penetration when applied in cosmetic products
    Determining the dermal penetration of nanomaterials in vitro as a means to estimate consequent absorption and possible toxicity;
     
  • Migration to food when used in food packaging materials
    Examining the possibility of nanomaterial leaching from food packaging materials and to determine if there is a safety concern related to these packaging materials; and 
     
  • Possible consequent toxicity
    Investigating different approaches to study the potential toxicity of nanomaterials used in foods and cosmetics, for example: developing pharmacokinetic-based models for quantitative risk assessment and using alternative animal models.


    For further information:
    Outreach and Information Center
    (HFS-009)
    Center for Food Safety and Applied Nutrition
    Food and Drug Administration
    5100 Paint Branch Parkway
    College Park, MD 20740Telephone: (888) 723-3366
    Email (Consumers): consumer@fda.gov
    Email (Industry): industry@fda.gov