National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH)

National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH)

The mission of the NIOSH is to generate new knowledge in the field of occupational safety and health and to transfer that knowledge into practice for the betterment of workers. To accomplish this mission, NIOSH conducts scientific research, develops guidance and authoritative recommendations, disseminates information, and responds to requests for workplace health hazard evaluations. NIOSH provides national and world leadership to prevent work-related illness, injury, disability, and death by gathering information, conducting scientific research, and translating the knowledge gained into products and services, including scientific information products, training videos, and recommendations for improving safety and health in the workplace.

Research focus

NIOSH is the leading Federal agency conducting research and providing guidance on the occupational safety and health implications and applications of nanotechnology. This research focuses NIOSH's scientific expertise, and its efforts, on answering the questions that are essential to understanding these implications and applications:

  • How might workers be exposed to nano-sized particles in the manufacturing or industrial use of nanomaterials?
  • How do nanoparticles interact with the body’s systems?
  • What effects might nanoparticles have on the body’s systems?


NIOSH contributes to nanotechnology research by: being at the forefront of U.S. research to understand the occupational health implications of nanomaterials; offering interim guidelines for working with nanomaterials, consistent with the best scientific knowledge; and publishing new findings and recommendations as its research advances. Notably through its document, “Approaches to Safe Nanotechnology” NIOSH is also involved with Nanotechnology Internationally ( In addition, NIOSH is providing support to the “Good Nano Guide” hosted on the nanoHUB ( NIOSH’s findings and recommendations have been incorporated by several other agencies in the U.S. and internationally, including the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and the International Organization for Standardization.