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September 15, 2008

IARC Future Priorities Include Carbon-Based Nanomaterials and Ultrafine Particles

Lynn L. Bergeson

The August 2008 issue of The Lancet Oncology includes an article entitled “Special Report: Policy — Future Priorities for IARC Monographs.” According to the article, carbon-based nanomaterials and ultrafine particles are included on the list of substances recommended by the International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) Advisory Group as high priority for assessment. The article states that carbon-based nanomaterials are “present in many consumer products; carbon nanotubes induce irreversible lung fibrosis and mesothelioma in animals.” Ultrafine particles, according to the article, were recommended because “cancer concerns arise from core particles and chemicals that adhere to their surfaces.” The Advisory Group met in June 2008 to consider nominations for review in future IARC monographs.