Medical Devices & Pharmaceuticals

Nanotechnologies hold enormous potential to revolutionise the field of medicine through manifold applications:

  • Improved, cost-effective tissue engineering and creation of bespoke implants are realised through the combination of nanomaterials’ size and physical properties in 3D printing, resulting in biomimetic solutions: the use of natural materials and scaffolds without their problems (i.e. contaminations, infections, carried by unsterile biological material).
  • Therapeutics are enhanced through both the improved targeting and bioavailability of existing medicinal substances, as well as the discovery of entirely new substances and nanomaterials, which introduces a range of advantages over classical drug-delivery methods, including the targeted delivery to diseased sites only, and the improved adsorption, distribution and duration of medicines in the body.
  • Diagnostics are improved by nanotechnology-based innovations ranging from the introduction of increased sensitivity and specificity, to advanced rapid screening processes enabled by lab-on-a-chip devise.


Nanotechnology enables the combination of hitherto separate approaches to health care by permitting the realisation of so-called ’theranostic’ applications, as well as targeted combination products.

Over 200 nanotechnology-enables products have already undergone full clinical trials and are benefitting patients through a reduction of side effects due to systemic toxicity, tailored drug release that ultimately enhances the patient’s quality of life, as well as tissue engineered scaffolding that stimulates bone growth and this significantly reduces a patient’s recovery time.

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News & Alerts

Council releases Position on Medical Devices Regulation ahead of European Parliament committee vote on 21 March - UPDATE

** UPDATE: the European Parliament will first vote on the text in Committee on 21 March 2017, the text should then be voted upon in Plenary Session on 4 April 2017 **

On 7 March 2017, the Council of the European Union released its position with a view to the adoption of a Regulation on Medical Devices. The Council, the European Parliament and the Commission had reached  an agreement in June 2016. 

Revised Rule on Nanomaterials in the Trilogue Compromise Text for Medical Devices Regulation

On 15 June 2016, the three institutions of the European Union reached an agreement on the Regulation on Medical Devices. The Council, the European Parliament and the Commission had engaged in a trilogue procedure after the vote of the European Parliament in April 2014.

In the tentatively agreed consolidated compromise text, the institutions of the European Union set rules for more control over the production of medical devices and ‘Notified Bodies’. It also introduces an ‘implant card’ for patients and increased scrutiny on high risk devices.

European Economic and Social Committee outlines the Role of Nanotechnology for EU Competitiveness

On 24 February 2016, the European Economic and Social Committee (EESC) of the European Union published an 'own-initiative opinion' on ‘Nanotechnology for a competitive Chemical Industry’. The document calls for nanotechnology to "be more strongly reflected and supported in the EU's priorities" and declares "freedom in research and fewer bureaucratic requirements would ensure [European Union] competitiveness" in the