Projectname: Nanosafety Fast Test (CheckNano)

Lead Partner: Syddansk Universität (SDU) / Mads Clausen Institut (MCI) - NanoSYD

Projectpartner: Fachhochschule Kiel, Forschungs-und Entwicklungszentrum FH Kiel, Hochschule Flensburg, Coherent LaserSystems GmbH & Co. KG, University of Southern Denmark (SDU) - SDU Nano Optics, Nepllip IVS

Networkpartner: Life Science Nord Management GmbH, Wirtschaftsförderung und Technologietransfer Schleswig-Holstein GmbH, Danish Food Cluster, Biopeople, Microfluidic Chipshop, Newtec, Wöhlk Contaktlinsen GmbH, Norddeutsche Initiative Nanotechnologie Schleswig-Holstein e.V.

Duration: 08/2018 – 07/2021

Sponsored by: EU - Interreg 5 A

Summary and targets

The project "CheckNano - Nanosafety Fast Test" brings together partners from Germany and Denmark to develop a prototype for a fast test for the identification of toxic nanoparticles. Private companies are actively involved in this project to commercialize the test, e.g. by implementing spin-offs.

The German-Danish region can thus benefit from the dynamic development of the nanotechnology market. Today, nanoparticles (particles smaller than 100 nm) are used in a wide range of applications - from the cosmetics and food industries to medical technology and pharmaceuticals - to radically improve products. However, nanoparticles penetrate cell barriers below a critical size and lead to cell death. Detailed studies of recent years for silver nanoparticles have identified the underlying mechanism and determined this critical size. This knowledge of the size and shape of nanoparticles is therefore essential for their safe application and forms the basis of an innovative fast test in this project.

The project combines interdisciplinary competences from nanotechnology (characterization and structuring), biotechnology, nutrition and sensor technology in the German-Danish border region. Nanofilters and microfilters pre-select the particles, followed by an exact optical sizing and fine filtration. The fast test offers a solid added value for product safety for all companies in which nanoparticles are used in production processes - such as food industries, medical technology industries, cosmetics industries, pharmaceutical and packaging industries.

The test is designed for silver nanoparticles as model particles, as they are the most commonly used nanoparticles in consumer products due to their antibacterial properties. However, little is known about the behaviour and modification of such particles in food. Since silver nanoparticles can be synthesized and physically characterized in defined quantities, they are well suited to optimize the fast test for particles of different sizes, shapes and surfaces and to investigate the influence of real media as they occur in foodstuffs.