Microplastic risk assessment and model development: Exposure assessment: In silico model, transfer across barriers, in vivo tracking, human stool study

This is also part of the Plastics Europe Brigid research project to assess potential risks to human
health due to microplastic exposure via ingestion. Working Package 2 focuses on exposure
assessment, including: i) development of an exposure model; ii) investigation of transfer of
microplastics across barriers, iii) an in vivo tracking study, and iv) a human stool study.

Organized by Plastics Europe

Researchers / Institutional Affiliations

  • In silico exposure model:
    Wageningen University and Research (WUR; The Netherlands)
  • Transfer across barriers:
    Nederlandse Organisatie voor Toegepast Natuurwetenschappelijk Onderzoek (TNO; The
    BASF (Germany)
  • In vivo tracking study:
    Nederlandse Organisatie voor Toegepast Natuurwetenschappelijk Onderzoek (TNO; The
    Charles River Laboratories
  • Human stool study:
    Environment Agency Austria (UBA; Austria)


  • In silico exposure model: Q1 2022 to Q1 2026
  • Transfer across barriers: Q3 2024 to Q1 2025
  • In vivo tracking study: Q3 2024 to Q1 2025
  • Human stool study: Q3 2023 to Q1 2024

Funding Source

Plastics Europe, Task 2.i. co-funded by Cefic-LRI (as project B24)

Additional information

The objective of Working Package 2 is to confirm and track the presence of microplastics in the
human body. There is a focus on: an in silico human exposure computer model, being built in
collaboration with Cefic-LRI project B24; transfer across barriers, using cell-culture assays to
establish the potential for microplastics to cross biological membranes; an in vivo tracking study
using model organisms; and a human stool study aimed at counting and characterizing
microplastics in human stool.

Professional Presentations


Published Papers

Nano- and microplastic PBK modeling in the context of human exposure and risk
assessment. Wardani et al. 2024. Environment International 186: 108504.