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Characterizing Oral Exposure to Nanoplastics and Microplastics

Characterization of Oral NMP Exposure

Dos niñas beben agua de una fuente
Foto: Pezibear / Pixabay
03/01/2021 - 05/01/2024
Cristina Villanueva
The French agency for Food, Environmental and Occupational Health Safety (ANSES)

Micro- and nano-plastics (MNP) are small plastic particles from plastic degradation. These contaminants are already in our food chain since they are residues of plastic containers used on a daily basis. We are also exposed to these particles by consuming animals that have in turn absorbed plastics. In addition, they can also be found in drinking water, especially if it comes from plastic bottles.

These contaminants are suspected of posing a substantial risk to human health, but it is unknown as scientific evidence does not yet exist.


The purpose of this study is to explore and assess which foods, which types of water (tap or bottled), and which individual habits may be associated with increased human exposure to MNPs and other additives present in plastics.

48 participants recruited from Barcelona will answer a questionnaire on diet and lifestyle factors and will provide a stool sample, a urine sample, and a sample of drinking water from their residence, where MNP and plastic additives will be measured.

Total Funding

199,996 €

Ongoing study on microplastics in water and food

The research team is currently looking for vegetarian or vegan volunteers, over 30 years old and living in Barcelona, to participate in a study on microplastics in drinking water and food, which will contribute to further knowledge on how to prevent exposure to microplastics.

If you meet these requirements and want to take part, you just have to fill in this form.

If you are among the selected participants, the research team will later contact you to organise a home visit to: 1) collect a drinking water sample at the tap; 2) collect urine and stool sample, and 3) answer a questionnaire on diet and lifestyle.

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