Nanotoxicology: The Molecular Science Point of View
- Martin Pumera*
Research on nanotoxicity is of extremely high scientific, social, and economic value. As nanomaterial-based products enter the market, there is an urgent need for related research in order to prevent dramatic consequences of any health-oriented issues caused by nanotechnology-driven products. The results of research on nanotoxicity have profound significance because the design of nanomaterials used in industry and consumer products should be based on the outcome of such research. The research has multi-billion dollar significance for industry and an even greater value for consumers and health care. Such research could prevent an enormous burden in terms of the cost of care for chronic health problems of the entire population caused by the widespread use of untested nanomaterials. The tremendous progress of nanotechnology has not been accompanied by sufficient studies of nanomaterial toxicity even though they possess unique, completely new properties. Thus, their toxicity can neither be extrapolated from the toxicity of bulk materials nor from the toxicity of their constituents in ionic form. This Focus Review discusses the current state of nanotoxicity research and nanotoxicology from the point of view of molecular science.