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Table 2 Recommendations on material characterization

From: Principles for characterizing the potential human health effects from exposure to nanomaterials: elements of a screening strategy

Characterization (Off-line) Human exposure Toxicity Screening Studies
   Supplied material Administered material Material in vivo / in vitro
Size distribution (primary particles) E (Combine with agglomeration state) E D D
Shape E E O O
Surface area D E D O
Composition E E O O
Surface chemistry D E D D/O
Surface contamination D N D N
Surface charge – suspension/solution O E E O
Surface charge – powder (use bio fluid surrogate) O E N O
Crystal structure O E O O
Particle physicochemical structure E E D D
Agglomeration state E N E D
Porosity D D N N
Method of production E E -- --
Preparation process -- -- E --
Heterogeneity D E E D
Prior storage of material E E E --
Concentration E -- E D
  1. E: These characterizations are considered to be essential.
  2. D: These characterizations are considered to provide valuable information, but are not recommended as essential due to constraints associated with complexity, cost and availability.
  3. O: These characterizations are considered to provide valuable but non-essential information.
  4. N: These characterizations are not considered to be of significant value to screening studies.