SweNanoSafe’s first Annual Conference

Keynote speaker Tom van Teunenbroek, who presented the results of the large NANoReG project, in conversation with Professor Bengt Fadeel, Karolinska Institutet, Heike Hellmold, Deputy Head of Swetox and Senior Advisor Eva Hellsten.

SweNanoSafe, the newly established national platform for nano safety at Swetox, held its first annual conference of the World Trade Center in Stockholm on 28 March. Some eighty representatives from universities, government, industry and NGOs participated.

At the meeting, the large, recently completed EU project NANoREG, which developed criteria for risk assessments of produced nanomaterials were presented. Current nano research in physiology, ecology and risk assessments regarding materials were also covered.

Speakers from the Swedish Medical Products Agency and the Swedish Chemicals Agency highlighted the problems facing law, regarding this fast-growing, but largely unexplored technology. Stakeholder and public safety attitudes and possible unrest is measured in the research project MISTRA environmentally safe nanotechnology.

The questions surrounding safety is also driven by NGOs like CIEL (Center for International Environmental Law in Geneva), who presented their work at the conference. Also by the Swedish Society for Nature Conservation, which meets much concern and calls for legislative work to begin in earnest, in the light of the knowledge that already exists.

Hugues Crutzen, Joint Research Center, asks a question from the audience.
Thomas Backhaus, ecotoxicologist at Gothenburg University who works in the project MISTRA environmentally safe nanotechnology, showed how nanomaterials seem to affect organisms different at different levels of the ecosystem.
The coffee breaks gave rise to many new contacts between the participants.