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NANOTECHNOLOGY IN THE FOOD CHAIN - Favv

NANOTECHNOLOGY IN THE FOOD CHAIN - Favv

120 Both in vitro and in

120 Both in vitro and in vivo studies have provided evidence that titanium dioxide nanoparticles can enter the tissues and that the distribution of the particles is a function of their size and surface. Probably oxidative stress in diverse cell types is responsible for damage or apoptosis of cells. In this context should be mentioned that the European Parliament has demanded mandatory labelling of all products containing nano ingredients and acknowledged that specific methods to test the safety of nanomaterials are needed.

Nanoparticles: between food handling and skin penetration Jente Boonen, Bram Baert & Bart De Spiegeleer Drug Quality and Registration (DruQuaR) group, Faculty of Pharmaceutical Sciences, Ghent University, Harelbekestraat 72, B-9000 Ghent, Belgium E-mail: bart.despiegeleer@UGent.be (Ref.: 2010-441d) Nanoparticles (NPs) and even microparticles (MPs) are ubiquitous present in the food chain. They occur naturally (e.g. resulting from the biomineralisation process in plants) and/or can be added deliberately (e.g. to increase flavour or colour in the so-called “nanofood”). However, because of proportional larger surface area, NPs have (a) increased chemical reactivity and adsorption properties, (b) can form complexes with cell components like proteins and nuclear materials, (c) possess characteristic pharmacokinetics including their ability to circumvent the immune system. In the food industry as well as by the consumer itself, food handling is inevitable. Due to skin contact, NPs present on food and food packaging can migrate from these materials and penetrate into the skin. Depending on the matrix which contains these nano- and microparticles, distinct skin penetration behaviour has been observed (Boonen et al., 2010). The infinite gamma of food/contact matrices (e.g. waxes, oils, …) are thus expected to have different influences on the skin barrier function, resulting in different particulate penetration effects. Eventually, NP and MP might reach the viable epidermal layers or even the dermis. Subsequently, they can induce cytotoxicity in living cells like keratinocytes and Langerhans cells or penetrate further into the dermis, followed by uptake in the lymphatic system and ultimately end up in the systemic circulation. As a result, toxicological aspects of food baring NP and MP, their matrix and skin penetration cannot be ignored and need to be further investigated. 121

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