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Faculty Profiles

Nancy Monteiro-Riviere

Nano Research Area

  • Health & Bio-Nanotechnology
  • Nano-Characterization
  • Nano-Materials & Engineering

Research Summary

Dr. Monteiro-Riviere's research focuses on human occupational exposure by assessing chemical/ biological interactions and toxicity of environmental and novel pharmaceutical compounds and engineered nanomaterials. This involves assessing dermatotoxicity and absorption in both vivo and in vitro model systems. Skin function is assessed by studying proinflammatory cytokines, viability, RT-PCR, proteomics, laser scanning confocal microscopy  and toxicologic pathology. An important interaction that is unique to chemical exposure to skin is the interaction that occurs with the lipids in the stratum corneum barrier. These have been explored using Fourier Transform Infra Red (FTIR) imaging as well as transmission and scanning electron microscopy. Model systems employed include human epidermal keratinocyte cultures as well as a unique perfused skin model developed in our lab that has been validated to be predictive of human absorption. She is interested in problems involving nanomaterial exposure to skin that modulates their subsequent absorption or activity either through changes induced in the stratum corneum lipid barrier or keratinocyte proteome.

Current research relates to the impact of engineered nanomaterials ENM on human health and the environment. She has applied her techniques with chemicals to nanomaterial interaction of multi-walled carbon nanotubes, single walled carbon nanotubes, fullerenes and quantum dots with human keratinocytes. In addition, the biodistribution of nanomaterials is being conducted. Exposure must be evaluated before the risk of this hazard can be determined in an occupational or environmental scenario. These findings suggest that the toxicology of these structures must be assessed before widespread public exposure so that appropriate protective measures can be developed.

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