Recent Frontiers in Research on Nanoplastics

A special issue of Toxics (ISSN 2305-6304). This special issue belongs to the section "Ecotoxicology".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (20 January 2023) | Viewed by 3596

Special Issue Editors

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Guest Editor
Department of Physical Earth and Environmental Sciences, University of Siena, 53100 Siena, Italy
Interests: non invasive biomarkers; aquatic toxicology; aquatic environments; xenobiotics; marine mammals; genomics; environmental toxicology; endokrine Disruptoren; endocrine effects of chemicals; ecotoxicological effects; biomarkers

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Guest Editor
Department of Environmental, Earth and Physical Sciences, University of Siena, 53100 Siena, Italy
Interests: ecotoxicology; microplastics; marine litter; biological effects; ecotoxicological effects; emerging contaminants; plastic additives; molecular biology; biomarkers; endangered species; laboratory experiments
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Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Marine litter is cited as one of the most important indicators of the environmental quality of marine ecosystems in Europe. The main component of marine litter is plastics, and in recent years, numerous studies have been carried out to determine the distribution of plastics and microplastics, their abundance, their content in the environment, and their impact on marine ecosystems through both in vitro studies and field investigations. In contrast, research on nanoplastics is scarce and often limited to reviews and in vitro studies. Data on environmental exposure and the development of suitable methods for determination of nanoplastic levels are insufficient. Despite the lack of knowledge on these issues, nanoplastics are of potential concern because their size makes them capable of penetrating almost all biotic barriers and affecting organisms. Research on nanoplastics is important, and publication of recent advances could be useful in filling the significant gaps in knowledge so that stakeholders can make decisions and regulate their levels.

We are pleased to invite you to this Special Issue that focuses on advances in this area of research to improve knowledge on this topic. This Special Issue aims to publish recent results of studies focused on identifying methodological approaches to define environmental levels, to measure nanoplastics in samples without significant interferences by method, and to define effects on organisms in aquatic and terrestrial ecosystems. In this Special Issue, original research articles and reviews are welcome. Research areas may include (but not be limited to) the following: original research papers, in vivo and in vitro studies, and  in field activities and monitoring.

I look forward to receiving your contributions.

Prof. Dr. Monia Renzi
Prof. Dr. Maria Cristina Fossi
Dr. Cristina Panti
Guest Editors

Manuscript Submission Information

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Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 2600 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.


  • nanoplastics
  • health of organisms
  • ecotoxicity
  • ecosystem health
  • environmental levels
  • interaction with biota

Published Papers (1 paper)

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22 pages, 1834 KiB  
Nanoplastics: Status and Knowledge Gaps in the Finalization of Environmental Risk Assessments
by Andrea Masseroni, Cristiana Rizzi, Chiara Urani and Sara Villa
Toxics 2022, 10(5), 270; - 23 May 2022
Cited by 10 | Viewed by 2976
Nanoplastics (NPs) are particles ranging in size between 1 and 1000 nm, and they are a form of environmental contaminant of great ecotoxicological concern. Although NPs are widespread across ecosystems, they have only recently garnered growing attention from both the scientific community and [...] Read more.
Nanoplastics (NPs) are particles ranging in size between 1 and 1000 nm, and they are a form of environmental contaminant of great ecotoxicological concern. Although NPs are widespread across ecosystems, they have only recently garnered growing attention from both the scientific community and regulatory bodies. The present study reviews scientific literature related to the exposure and effects of NPs and identifies research gaps that impede the finalization of related environmental risk assessments (ERAs). Approximately 80 articles published between 2012 and 2021 were considered. Very few studies (eight articles) focused on the presence of NPs in biotic matrices, whereas the majority of the studies (62 articles) assessed the lethal and sublethal effects of NPs on aquatic and terrestrial organisms. Whilst many studies focused on nude NPs, only a few considered their association with different aggregates. Amongst NPs, the effects of polystyrene are the most extensively reported to date. Moreover, the effects of NPs on aquatic organisms are better characterized than those on terrestrial organisms. NP concentrations detected in water were close to or even higher than the sublethal levels for organisms. An ERA framework specifically tailored to NPs is proposed. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Recent Frontiers in Research on Nanoplastics)
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