INBT Presents Professional Development Seminars

Johns Hopkins Institute for NanoBioTechnology (INBT) will host four professional development seminars for scientists and engineers this summer. These seminars aim to expand student’s knowledge of issues and ideas relevant to but outside of the laboratory and classroom experience. Topics this summer will include intellectual property, science journalism, and more. Talks will be held June 10, June 24, July 8, and July 22 at 11 a.m. in Maryland Hall 110. Please RSVP to Ashanti Edwards, to attend.


Charles Day, second speaker at the 2009 INBT Professional Development Seminars

Charles Day, second speaker at the 2009 INBT Professional Development Seminars.

June 24:

“From tip to tale: How science news is made“

Charles Day, senior editor Physics Today

Day earned a PhD in astronomy from the University of Cambridge. After a postdoctoral position at Japan’s Institute of Space and Astronautical Science, he worked for six years at NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, Maryland. He now writes for and edits the Search and Discovery Department for Physics Today, the flagship publication of The American Institute of Physics and most influential and closely followed physics magazine in the world.

July speakers to be announced. Check back here for more info.

Past speakers:

June 10:

“The Role of Intellectual Property in Technology Commercialization and Academic Research.”

John N. Fini, director of intellectual property, Krieger School of Arts and Sciences, Whiting School of Engineering

Fini brings a wealth of experience in technology transfer and technology commercialization and in the entrepreneurial environment. He works closely with Johns Hopkins Technology Transfer with the aim of promoting the Homewood campus as a technology powerhouse.

Graczyk’s grad student places 2nd in Delta Omega contest

Talia Chalew, a predoctoral student working with INBT affiliated faculty member Thaddeus Graczyk, recently took second place in the 2009 Delta Omega Public Health Honor Society student poster contest (basic science/lab category). Her poster was titled Development of Assay to Assess Environmental Impacts of Engineered Nanoparticles on Chesapeake Bay Oysters. Chalew’s work suggests that engineered nanoparticles released into aquatic environments disrupt the animal’s immune system and make it vulnerable to pathogens. Graczyk is an associate professor in the department of Environmental Health Engineering in the Bloomberg School of Public Health. Chalew’s complete poster abstract can be read here.

Nano and Environment: Where to look for the nano-needle in the environmental haystack?

Seminar, May 20: “Nano and Environment: Where to look for the nano-needle in the environmental haystack?”

Department of Geography and Environmental Engineering Special Seminar Wednesday, May 20th at noon

234 Ames Hall

Nano and Environment: Where to look for the nano-needle in the environmental haystack?

Bernd Nowack
Materials, Products and the Environment Group Empa – Swiss Federal Laboratories for Materials Testing and Research St. Gallen, Switzerland

The behavior and the effects of nanomaterials in the environment are currently under heavy investigation and are discussed both in the scientific world as well as in the public. An elementary step towards a quantitative assessment of the risks of new compounds to the environment is to calculate their predicted environmental concentrations (PEC). We used a life-cycle perspective to model the quantities of engineered nanoparticles released into the environment.

The quantification was based on a substance flow analysis of nanomaterials from products to air, soil, water and sediments. The method was applied to the engineered nanoparticles titanium dioxide, silver, carbon nanotubes, fullerenes, and ZnO. The PEC-values obtained with this modeling were then compared to the predicted no effect concentrations (PNEC) derived from the ecotoxicological literature to estimate a possible risk. The expected concentrations of the nanomaterials in the different environmental compartments vary widely, caused by the different life cycles of the nanomaterial-containing products. The results of this study make it possible for the first time to carry out a quantitative risk assessment of nanomaterials in the environment and suggest further detailed studies of nano-Ag, nano-ZnO and nano-TiO2. The results also provide information in which environmental compartments we should first look for nanomaterials and what concentrations we can expect.