Monday, March 8, 2021Cosmetic regulations

Nano-TiO2: French ANSES recommends occupational exposure limit values

Nano-TiO2 : l'ANSES recommande des valeurs limites d'exposition professionnelle

With 17,000 tonnes produced or imported each year in France, titanium dioxide in nanoparticulate form (TiO2-NP) is one of the nanomaterials most used in various industrial sectors, particularly cosmetics. It is therefore a major potential source of exposure in the workplace. As a continuation of its work carried out for the general population, the ANSES is now recommending occupational exposure limit values (OELVs) to strengthen risk prevention for workers.

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Titanium dioxide in nanoparticle form has been used for about 30 years, particularly for its ultraviolet and photocatalytic radiation absorption properties.
In people exposed via the respiratory tract, it can in particular cause lung inflammation, which in some cases can lead to carcinogenesis.
Several physico-chemical characteristics of TiO2-NP can influence its toxicity: size, shape, the presence or absence of a surface coating or crystallinity, making it a very complex substance.

A OELV based on the prevention of lung inflammation

In line with the expert assessment carried out to set a toxicological reference value (TRV) for the general population, the ANSES recommends an occupational exposure limit value (OELV-8h) of 0.80 microgram per cubic metre. Adherence to this value helps to prevent lung inflammation, an effect that occurs at the lowest exposure concentrations.

Furthermore, due to the lack of available data on the immediate or short-term effects of TiO2-NP and in accordance with its methodological guide, ANSES also recommends not to exceed the concentration of 4 micrograms per cubic metre over a 15-minute period. Compliance with this value makes it possible to limit the size and number of exposure peaks during a working day.

An expertise relating to the evaluation of methods …

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