Innovation in research on micro- and nanoplastics and their effects on human health


We are a multidisciplinary team with expertise in a wide range of fields including food sciences & technology, allergy, immunology, biomedicine, biology, chemistry, bioinformatics, machine learning, paediatrics and others, cooperating across Europe to investigate the relationship among micro- and nanoplastics (MNPs) and allergic diseases.

The Project

Untangling the multifaceted relationship of exposure routes, risks and health impacts of MNPs.

Improving MNP detection

We plan to develop innovative tools to measure and characterize MNPs and potential contaminants in food, water and air.

Investigating MNPs combined with pollutants

We are committed to understanding the effect of MNPs combined with potentially harmful environmental contaminants adhering to their surfaces and finding their way into the human body.

The relationship with allergic diseases

We aim to examine a possible link between MNPs and their role in food allergy and allergic asthma.

The Workplan

1 MNPs in food and air

We plan to identify and characterise MNPs in a variety of foods, plants and in coastal air samples.

2 New tools

We aim to develop and optimise analytical tools for MNP detection and characterisation beyond the current state-of-the-art. Open-source software based on machine learning will help speed that process up.

3 MNPs and contaminants

We intend to generate new knowledge on MNPs as carriers of common pathogens, heavy metals, and allergens.

4 In vitro and in vivo testing

We will carry out studies on the impact of model MNPs and MNPs plus contaminants in vitro and in vivo.

5 Clinical studies

We will conduct clinical studies with children living in cities and by the seaside to determine links between MNP exposure and food allergy.

Synergies in Action

Imptox is one of five projects in the EU Horizon 2020 programme that will work together with the European Commission's Joint Research Center to form The European Research Cluster to Understand the Health Impacts of Micro- and Nanoplastics, CUSP. It is the cluster’s overall goal to contribute with new scientific knowledge and know-how to the European Strategy for Plastics.

Outreach & Guidance

Imptox partners plan to work closely with Non-Governmental Organizations, stakeholders from industry, business, scientists and policymakers. We plan to deliver data and its ramifications to help decision makers, risk assessors and regulators safeguard our air, water and food supply.



HORIZON, the EU Research & Innovation Magazine presents IMPTOX & CUSP!

“We eat and inhale thousands of bits of plastic every year. Now what?” is the opening question of the eponymous article published in HORIZON on January 10, 2022.


Imptox scientist interviewed by Bayrischer Rundfunk

Imptox researcher, Michelle Epstein from the Medical University of Vienna talks about microplastics and health


Have your say on microplastics!

No matter if you are a stakeholder with technical knowledge, a member of a consumer organisation, academia, research, think tank, or simply an interested citizen of the wider EU public – the European Commission invites you to share your knowledge on microplastics!


Imptox partner presents at the 14th International Congress on Nutrition in Belgrade

Imptox partner, Prof. Andreja Rajkovic from Ghent University will be holding a plenary lecture on November 10th during the 14th International Congress on Nutrition by the Serbian Nutrition Society.

The Imptox Team

Imptox is a multidisciplinary consortium of 12 partners from 8 European countries.


How to contact us

by email