The 2nd Vienna Summit on Microplastics and Health held

Nanobiofaces group leader Prof. Ivana Vinković Vrček as well as group members Lucija Božičević and Nikolina Peranić participated in the The 2nd Vienna Summit on Microplastics and Health on 1st December 2023, at the Hotel Regina in Vienna, Austria.

The summit brought together expert speakers, engaging discussions, and networking opportunities related on the impact of microplastics on human health. In addition to the summit, this event also served as the annual consortium meeting for partners and board members of the CBmed microONE project. This meeting provided a unique opportunity to review the progress made over the past year and plan future initiatives aimed at achieving the project’s goals.

Prof. Ivana Vinković Vrček, as part of the summit, held an oral presentation on the topic “Endocrine disrupting activity of complex mixtures: case study of pharmaceuticals and nanoplastics”.

International Conference EcoBalt 2023 “Chemicals & Environment” held

Nanobiofaces group leader Prof. Ivana Vinković Vrček participated in the International Conference EcoBalt 2023 “Chemicals & Environment” from October 9th to 11th, 2023, which was held at at the conference center of Nordic Hotel Forum in the center of Tallinn, Estonia.

The congress brought together international speakers focusing on six topics related to the environment: Environmental Chemistry, Environmental Toxicology, Ecology, Analytical Chemistry, Green and Sustainable Chemistry and Implications and applications of nanomaterials.

Prof. Ivana Vinković Vrček, as part of the congress, held an oral presentation on the topic “Endocrine Disrupting Activity of Mixtures Composed of Pharmaceuticals and Nanoplastic” as invited speaker. She was also a chair of session “Novel Approaches for Pollution Management” where she presented speakers.

10th International Congress “Veterinary Science and Profession 2023” held

Anamaria Gojanović dr. med. vet. participated in the 10th International Congress ”Veterinary Science & Profession” from October 5th to 7th, 2023, which was held at the Faculty of Veterinary Medicine in Zagreb.

The congress brought together international speakers focusing on six key areas, including veterinary public health, domestic animal care, horses, exotic and wild animals, small animals and free communications.

Anamaria Gojanović dr. med. vet. as part of the congress held a poster presentation on the topic “In vivo Efficacy of Gold Nanoparticles for Parkinson’s disease” (SENDER).


In the period from September 18-20, 2023, the symposium “7th RIJEKA FORUM ON NEURODEGENERATIVE DISEASES” was held, organized by the Croatian Academy of Sciences and Arts – The Department of Biomedical Sciences in Rijeka, The Clinical Hospital Center Rijeka, Faculty of Medicine, University of Rijeka, Croatian Neurological Society and Croatian Medical Association – Rijeka Branch.

The symposium was attended by Dr. Ivana Vinković Vrček, Dr. Nikolina Kalčec and Anamaria Gojanović dr. med. vet., as part of which Dr. Nikolina Kalčec and Anamaria Gojanović dr. med. vet. held their poster presentation entitled “Selenium Nanoparticles as Efficient Drug Delivery System for Parkinson’s disease” (SENDER).

The goal of the symposium was to present the latest achievements and dilemmas in the field of neurodegenerative diseases with this year’s special theme: “Mechanistic therapies – hype or hope” and other news about neurodegenerative diseases, in order to improve our daily practical and scientific work.

The symposium was supported by the Croatian Science Foundation grant no. 7276, “The Epidemiology of Parkinson’s Disease in Croatia and the Influence of Genetic Factors and Microbiota on the Progression and Treatment Outcomes of the Disease”.

Thesis topic defense – Lucija Božičević

On September 14, 2023, at the Faculty of Pharmacy and Biochemistry of the University of Zagreb, the public presentation of the doctoral thesis was held by PhD student Lucija Božičević. The proposed thesis title was “Endocrine disruptive effect of mixtures of plastic nanoparticles and selected drugs in vitro“. Under the mentorship of assoc. prof. dr. sc. Ivana Vinković Vrček and the co-mentorship of prof. dr. sc. Valerije Vrček. The thesis defence was held in front of the commission composed of: prof. dr. sc. Dubravka Vitali Čepo, prof. dr. sc. József Petrik and assoc. prof. dr. sc. Dajana Kučić Grgić.

Announcing the Upcoming Book: “Characterisation of Drug Nanocarriers”

We are pleased to announce a forthcoming book entitled “Characterisation of Drug Nanocarriers”, edited by Ivana Vinković Vrček, Jesus M. de la Fuente and Evgeny K. Apartsin. The book will be published by the Royal Society of Chemistry.

Nanotechnology has the potential to solve many unmet, urgent healthcare requirements. However, bridging the translational gap between lab and clinic for nanodrugs is still challenging, and there is limited guidance on regulatory-relevant information and approaches.

The main aim of this book is to provide guidance on characterization of drug carrier properties and efficacy required for regulatory acceptance of nanomaterials for their use in medicine.

This book provides a comprehensive overview of drug loading and delivery nanocarriers, including their charactersitics, methodologies and techniques to evaluate the association and interaction of the drug with the different nanocarriers.

Dr. Ivana Vinković Vrček to Speak on Endocrine Disruptive Effects of Nanoplastics and Pharmaceuticals at EFSA’s NANONETWORK Meeting

Dr. Ivana Vinković Vrček will be one of the main speakers at the upcoming EFSA (European Food and Safety Authority) meeting – ”Network on nanotechnologies in food and feed (NANONETWORK) 13th meeting”, in Parma, Italy. The meeting will be held on September 26, 2023.

Where she will give a lecture about a very important issue regarding „Endocrine disruptive effect of complex mixtures: case study on nanoplastics and pharmaceuticals“.

Attached below you can find the preliminary program of the meeting.

For more information about the NANONETWORK meeting and to stay updated on the latest developments, please visit the official EFSA website.

Linda Schiasselloni’s stay as part of the Erasmus + program

In the period from June 1 to July 31, at the Institute for Medical Research and Occupational Health we had the opportunity to host a student from Italy, Linda Schiasselloni, from the Department of Veterinary Medicine, Università degli Studi di Milano. As part of the Erasmus + program, Linda participated in professional practice on the scientific project Phoenix, under the guidance of dr. sc. Ivana Vinković Vrček.

During her practice, Linda participated in various project activities aimed at profiling the efficacy and safety of drug nanoformulations in rodent models. She was involved in all phases of experiments dealing with the assessment of biomarkers of oxidative stress in different organs and tissues of animals treated with nanoformulations of drugs.

During her traineeship, Linda also gained basic knowledge about GLP (Good Laboratory Practice) practices in the housing of laboratory animals and preclinical testing in rodent models. Furthermore, she perfected the skills of using laboratory animals in preclinical trials of nanopharmaceuticals. She also gained knowledge about biochemical tests and methods for assessing the toxicity of nanomaterials using in vivo models. Linda also improved her knowledge of the application of nanomaterials in biomedicine.

This professional traineeship enabled Linda to acquire important skills and knowledge in the field of nanomedicine, especially in relation to the application of nanomaterials in biomedicine. Linda actively participated in the research and showed commitment and ability in carrying out the assigned tasks. Her participation has contributed to the progress of the Phoenix project, and the Institute for Medical Research and Occupational Health is pleased with the successful collaboration with Linda and the Università degli Studi di Milano.

Nabiheal M6 Meeting held

The Nabiheal team gathered in Berlin at Charité – Universitätsmedizin, from 04.07. -07.07. 2023 to hold their M6 Meeting. Funded by Horizon Europe (HORIZON) under grant agreement no. 101092269.

The meeting was attended by dr. sc. Ivana Vinković Vrček, leader of work package 5 (WP5).

After six months, The leadership of the Nabiheal project gathered together, to assess their progress, exchange ideas and make important decisions to move forward. All for the sake of the goal that their activities will contribute to the improvement of the wound healing process in patients.

The international conference “Recent achievements in nanotechnology – 10th anniversary of the BNT Center of the University of Bialystok”

The International Conference “Recent Advances in Nanotechnology – 10th Anniversary of the BNT Center of the University of Bialystok” was held in the period from 28/05 to 01/06/2023 at the University Campus in Bialystok, 1K Ciolkowskiego Str., Bialystok, Poland.

The conference was attended by dr. sc. Nikolina Kalčec and Nikolina Peranić, mag. chem., where they both held their oral lectures.

Dr. sc. Nikolina Kalčec gave a lecture on the topic “Mass Spectrometry Imaging for Nephrotoxicity Evaluation of Different Doxorubicin Formulations” (PHOENIX and SENDER), while Nikolina Peranić, mag. chem presented “In vivo efficacy testing of nanodrugs for Parkinson’s disease treatment” (SENDER).

The main goal of the conference was to create an international platform for the exchange of scientific ideas on the topic of nanotechnology.

The topics were divided into three main thematic panels covering issues related to nanomaterials, their characteristics, applications and biological activity.

Main topics discussed during the meeting:

  • Diversity of nanomaterials
  • Functionalization of nanomaterials
  •  Characterization and modifications of nanomaterials
  • Applications of nanomaterials
  • Nanocomposites
  • Toxicity of nanomaterials

The conference is co-financed from the state budget under the “Doskonała nauka” program, Recent achievements is nanotechnology – 10-th anniversary of BNT Center University of Bialystok (contract no. DNK/SP/548576/2022), project value 124 500 PLN, co-financing 109 000 PLN.