We are doing science for policy
The Joint Research Centre (JRC) is the European Commission's science and knowledge service which employs scientists to carry out research in order to provide independent scientific advice and support to EU policy.
Experts from several German and French organisations - including scientists from EFSA and the JRC - reviewed the current application of classical and new nanomaterials in the context of regulatory requirements and standardisation for chemicals, food and consumer products. They concluded that nanomaterial characterisation is still challenging and the major bottleneck of risk assessment and regulation.
The JRC organised a dedicated workshop to bridge scientific communities involved in progressing the regulatory science of nanomedicines. There was a general agreement by the participants that existing standards and guidance documents might not be always sufficient for the regulation of nanomedicines due to their particularities.
JRC scientists, in collaboration with six Italian Institutions, demonstrated that vesicular nanocarriers such as niosomes, are able to entrap drugs for safe delivery to targets to treat acute and chronic inflammation.
The Joint Research Centre (JRC) of the European Commission (EC) has developed a new Certified Reference Material (CRM) for nanoparticle size analysis. The CRM (ERM-FD101b) is a suspension of silica nanoparticles of nominally 85 nm in diameter in an aqueous solution and has been developed to support the implementation of the EC nanomaterial definition.
JRC scientists investigated the influence of various purification processes onto the surface composition and chemistry of gold nanoparticles. This work is relevant for the successful application of gold nanoparticles especially to be used as biomedicals and biosensing devices.
A collaborative study, organised by JRC, investigated the comparability and reliability of particle size values measured by a commercial centrifugal liquid sedimentation technique. The study was carried out to support the implementation of legislation related to nanomaterials.
The outcome of the study shows that particle size results are comparable when the method is calibrated with a well-characterised, good quality calibrant and that results can be achieved with an accuracy of about 10 %.
Scientists from the JRC and the Veterinary and Agrochemical Research Centre (CODA-CERVA, Belgium) have investigated the performance of a commercial particle tracking analysis device for size analysis of silica and polystyrene nano- and microparticles. The results of this study will help scientists in estimating the uncertainties of their measurement results in this field.
The JRC, together with scientists from Dutch, German and Danish organisations, organised an interlaboratory study to investigate the readiness of single-particle ICP-MS for the determination of the median diameter of silver nanoparticles in food. The study revealed that significant improvements are needed before the method can be reliably used for official control purposes.
Europe received fewer submissions of nanomedicines for market authorisation in comparison to other regions in the world in the last five years.
This is one of the major outcomes of a recent survey performed with international regulatory bodies done by JRC scientists in collaboration with the Norwegian SINTEF Institute for Materials and Chemistry.
The JRC – in collaboration with other Research Institutions – identified and measured a new mechanism of antimicrobial activity.
They predicted, engineered and demonstrated antimicrobial monolayer poration. The visualisation in live bacteria demonstrated that bacterial cell death can happen within minutes.
Membrane poration is fundamental to cell function. In particular, the spread of antimicrobial resistance re-emphasises poration as a means of fighting infections.