Minimizing Ecotoxicity and Persistence in Chemicals and Materials
Organizers: Robert L. Tanguay, Distinguished Professor, Oregon State University; Adelina Voutchkova, Assistant Professor, George Washington University
Rational design of functional, safe and biodegradable chemicals and materials is not only critical for sustainability, but also a valuable source of competitive advantage for industry. However, there is still a pressing need to train chemists how to qualify the terms “safe” and “biodegradable”, and how to apply tools and expert judgement to be able to predict and/or measure thresholds associated with toxicity and persistence. This alternative program will aim to develop fundamental knowledge needed to specifically assess ecotoxicity and persistence of chemicals and materials, and to design new substances with minimal hazard to the environment.
In the first part of the program the participants shall be presented with some background information in the form of case studies on (i) experimental determination of biocompatibility; (ii) predictive modeling of ecotoxicity and (iii) quantification of biodegradability/persistence of chemicals and materials. Comparative examples from the pharmaceutical industry shall be used to illustrate the power of advanced tools in tailored design for function and environmental performance. In the second part, participants will engage in applying the concepts acquired to the design of new chemicals/materials, identifying appropriate tools and methods that can be applied at different stages of the process.