Strategies and technologies for the ecosafety assessment and design of engineered particles entering the marine environment are urgently needed. As the application of nanoparticles in science and technology grows, the need to understand their impact on the marine environment becomes increasingly important. This Editorial introduces a Special Issue on the topic of a sustainable and safety use of nanoparticles for protecting, recovering and supporting the oceans’ environment and consequently human health. The issue focus on the impact of micro/nano-plastics and metallic nanoparticles on marine organisms, as well as some methodological aspects associated to the eco/toxicity and analytical approaches for in deep physico-chemical characterization of nanoparticles in marine waters and sediment media. Important and urgent topics are addressed in the field of nano-ecosafety in order to assess more precisely both exposure routes and environmental hazards of nanoparticles in the ocean. Ecotoxicological and toxicological data, obtained using a wide variety of organisms representative of different trophic levels and biological organization, from whole animals to macromolecules, will be useful for a better definition of cleaner and safer nanoparticles. Efforts in developing a broad understanding of target species, expected results, benchmarks and timelines, will be of primary importance.
Julian Blasco, Ilaria Corsi, Valeria Matranga, Marine Environmental Research, Volume 111, Pages 1–4, October 2015