Thursday, February 5, 2009

SEPARATING THE HYPE AND THE BUZZ 020509

Week on February 1, 2009.

Been on the road at ILSI-NA inTucson and a ski trip to Utah.

There were six major events and some minors ones.

1. THE “A” WORD (ASBESTOS)


The 2020 Science Blog hosted by Andrew Maynard addresses the high aspect ration of nanoparticles (HARN) reviewing the recently released DEFRA Report. Andrew adds we are funding the wrong research and this failure and specifically to HARN issue “could cost some sectors of the nanotechnology industry dearly if clear information and safe working guidelines aren’t forthcoming soon.” This post is a fairly good review of what has been said and reported to date. Go to http://2020science.org/2009/01/23/asbestos-like-nanomaterials-should-we-be-concerned/. The Report on Project CB0406 was dated August 13, 2008 (http://www.safenano.org/Uploads/HARN.pdf). Andrew does a good job of examining HARN and the fiber paradigm.

2. REGULATION ON TWO FRONTS


Switzerland’s Centre for Technology Assessment (TA-Swiss) has called for the existing legislation on foods and chemicals to be adapted to meet the demands of nanotechnology. See http://www.foodproductiondaily.com/content/view/print/233888. This is another food and nano report. You can read the abstract at http://www.ta-swiss.ch/e/them_nano_nafo.html. AND we are anticipating the release of regulations on industrial use of engineered nanoparticles in Canada (http://www.nanowerk.com/news/newsid=9060.php).

3. SELF DISINFECTING FILM


Developed by ETH Zurich and being produced by Perlen Converting AG Company this film has anticipated uses at hotspots for germ transmission in hospital facilities. See http://www.nanowerk.com/news/newsid=8997.php.

4. DEMRON PATENT


This is presumably the world’s first and only protective material for all types of chemical, biological, radiological and nuclear incidents. Demron is an advanced radiopaque nanopolymeric compound fused between layers of fabric and manufactured into lightweight nuclear radiation blocking garments including full-body suits, vests, blankets and medical X-ray vests and aprons. Pretty cool. http://www.nanowerk.com/news/newsid=9042.php

5. NANOTUBE, BONE GROWTH, AND STEM CELLS


UC San Diego team plans to work with orthopedic colleagues to bring discovery to clinical application.
http://www.nanowerk.com/news/newsid=9099.php

6. WORKFORCE PREPARATION


NanoTecNexus (NTN) is launching the first program of-its-kind this February -- unveiling a new NTN Chapter University program at UC San Diego’s NanoEngineering department arming students with the leadership skills, industry readiness, and career path knowledge needed for careers in nanotechnology. It will be interesting to see how this works and its effectiveness. Hopefully, someone will collect assessment data. See http://www.prweb.com/releases/2009/01/prweb1911084.htm.

HONORABLE MENTIONS


NANOAFRICA 09 – 3RD International Conference in Pretoria where South Africa progress was noted by Technology Minister Mangena.
http://www.buanews.gov.za/news/09/09012911451001

CATALYTIC CONVERTER - Mazda Motor Corporation is launch nanocatalyst technology in automotive catalytic converters. It will be introduced in the new Mazda3 (known as the Mazda Axela in Japan), which will go on sale across the globe later this year
http://www.miningweekly.com/article.php?a_id=150859

REPORT FROM THE NANODESK - Joint WMHT Educational Telecommunications ("WMHT") and the U Albany College of Nanoscale Science and Engineering ("CNSE") TV venture.
http://www.wmht.org/index.php?s=3

ORAL ANTICANCER DRUG DELIVERY - A team from Johns Hopkins reported on a unique composition of nanoparticles that readily incorporated water-insoluble drugs and were capable of delivering those drugs into the bloodstream after oral administration.
http://www.azonano.com/news.asp?newsID=9462

AURIMUNE - Aurimune is entering its second human trials. Aurimune involved solid-gold nanoparticle coated with a tumor-weakening agent. Because blood vessels around cancerous tumors are leaky, Aurimune nanoparticles can slip out of the vessels near a tumor and cluster around it.
http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2009/01/26/AR.

ARSENIC - The Idaho National Laboratory and Water Technology Group Inc., (WTG) Harvard, Mass. signed a licensing agreement that provides exclusive
rights to commercialize the Nano-Composite Arsenic Sorbent (N-CAS) that will improve the ability to remove arsenic from contaminated water supplies.
http://www.azonano.com/news.asp?newsID=9673