The Chinese Academy of Inspection and Quarantine and the JRC Institute for Health and Consumer Protection (IHCP) have kicked off collaboration to support risk management and improve consumer protection through new approaches in the areas of nanotechnology and alternative methods to animal testing.
On June 6, the organisations have signed a MoU on the occasion of the EU-China food safety scientific seminar at the Shanghai World Expo. Both institutions provide technical support for policy makers and aim to reinforce their co-operation in scientific research for consumer products safety.
Nanotechnology is increasingly exploited in the development of novel and improved products and applications in areas as diverse as food, technology, biotechnology, medicine, materials science and others. The rapid increase in the utilisation of nano-particles in industry and in consumer products is, however, causing concerns regarding the potential effects on health and on the environment. With today’s globalisation of markets, food safety or consumer protection are no longer domestic issues, but need to be addressed in international collaboration.
The JRC-IHCP has several years of experience in the field of nanotechnology, in particular regarding research in the safety assessment of nano-materials, where it assesses the potential risks of particulate nano-materials due to uptake and subsequent potential adverse effects on the living tissue.
At present, the institute develops and uses state-of-the-art computational and in vitro techniques to analyse the interaction of nano-particles with cells and proteins.