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WIREs Nanomed Nanobiotechnol
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A comprehensive environmental assessment approach to engineered nanomaterials

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Abstract The anticipated benefits of engineered nanomaterials (ENMs) should be weighed against their possible negative impacts. Comprehensive environmental assessment (CEA) provides a means of evaluating such trade‐offs in a holistic and systematic manner. CEA consists of both a framework for organizing information and a process for using collective judgment to identify and prioritize the issues presented by ENMs. As a meta‐assessment approach, CEA is designed to assist both research planners and risk managers by building on various assessment and analytic tools used by risk assessors. Given the immature state of the science for ENMs, CEA is currently being primarily used for prioritizing research directions. Therefore, highlights of case studies of selected ENM applications are presented to illustrate how CEA has been applied thus far to help guide research efforts to support future assessment efforts. In addition, CEA is discussed in relation to topical subjects, such as sustainability, transparency, and stakeholder engagement. Finally, comparisons to other life cycle‐based assessment approaches directed at ENMs are noted. WIREs Nanomed Nanobiotechnol 2013, 5:139–149. doi: 10.1002/wnan.1203 This article is categorized under: Nanotechnology Approaches to Biology > Nanoscale Systems in Biology Toxicology and Regulatory Issues in Nanomedicine > Regulatory and Policy Issues in Nanomedicine Toxicology and Regulatory Issues in Nanomedicine > Toxicology of Nanomaterials

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Schematic representation of the NAS/NRC risk assessment paradigm.15

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Highlights of the CEA process.17

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Highlights of the CEA framework.17

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Toxicology and Regulatory Issues in Nanomedicine > Regulatory and Policy Issues in Nanomedicine
Nanotechnology Approaches to Biology > Nanoscale Systems in Biology
Toxicology and Regulatory Issues in Nanomedicine > Toxicology of Nanomaterials

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