HCR.20.085 – Nanoplastics in the brain

Route: Health care research, sickness prevention and treatment

Cluster question: 101 Can we model the human body and use smart technologies for health, nutritional, and toxicity research, drastically reducing the use of laboratory animals at the same time?

One of the biggest current threats that humanity faces is the climate change and environmental alterations that can have tremendous impact on human health and well-being. Recent evidence indicates that environmental pollutants can affect the function of several organs, including lung, heart and the brain resulting in pulmonary, cardiovascular and metabolic diseases. There is a rising awareness of the presence of micro and nano-sized plastics in our environment and the consequent impact on (human) health. Nano-sized objects have been found in the brain, raising the question of their potential detrimental effects on brain function. Here we aim to investigate the ability of micro and nano-plastics to infiltrate the brain in advanced in vitro models, allowing us faithfully measure the internalisation, intracellular distribution and ultimate effects on the human brain.


immune cells, Nanoplastics, stem cells


Organisation University of Groningen (RUG)
Name Prof. dr. A.M. (Amalia) Dolga
E-mail a.m.dolga@rug.nl
Website https://www.rug.nl/staff/a.m.dolga/research