Gediminas Mainelis, associate professor in the Department of Environmental Sciences at SEBS, and co-investigator KiBum Lee, assistant professor in the Department of Chemistry & Chemical Biology at the School of Arts and Sciences, have been awarded a National Science Foundation (NSF) Health and Environmental Safety of Nanotechnology grant of $299,773 to explore consumer exposure to airborne nanoparticles released from nanotechnology-based clothing.
There is growing concern about human exposure to nanoparticles and their toxicity related to the ever-increasing number of consumer products that incorporate engineered nanomaterials. This new NSF grant will fund the investigation into nanotechnology-based clothing and measure the potential exposures and burden to the human respiratory system.
Researchers will use special mannequins to simulate walking, running and handling of nano-based clothing in order to determine how relevant human exposures occur, the characteristics of the released nanoparticles and quantify the inhalation exposures for toxicological and epidemiological studies and risk assessment.
Mainelis, a 2006 Rutgers Academic Excellence Fund (AEF) Grant recipient, credited the Rutgers grant for providing funds for the equipment used in this and his other nanoparticle projects.