Enhanced antibacterial activity of decahedral silver nanoparticles

Abstract

The size and shape of silver nanoparticles (AgNPs) can potentially influence their antibacterial activity. In this study, a photochemical approach was adopted for the synthesis of decahedral AgNPs and their antibacterial activity was tested and compared against that of spherical AgNPs of similar size synthesized using the chemical reduction approach. The UV–vis spectra indicated the synthesis of decahedral AgNPs with a localized surface plasmon resonance (LSPR) peak at 502 nm. The spherical AgNPs exhibited the LSPR peak at 416 nm. Analysis of field emission gun-transmission electron microscopy (FEG-TEM) micrographs demonstrated the average diameter of decahedral silver nanoparticles as 52.1 ± 5.7 nm with side length as 33.2 ± 3.1 nm. In contrast, the average size of spherical AgNPs was 44.2 ± 6.3 nm. The decahedral AgNPs demonstrated ten times higher bactericidal activity as compared to the spherical AgNPs across all the bacterial strains tested. The minimum inhibitory concentration (MIC) for decahedral AgNPs was in the range of 4–8 μg/ml for all the four bacterial strains tested, whereas, for spherical nanoparticles of comparable size, the MIC was in the range of 40–80 μg/ml. The minimum bactericidal concentration (MBC) for decahedral AgNPs was in the range of 6–10 μg/ml. At the same time, spherical AgNPs of comparable size exhibited MBC in the range of 60–100 μg/ml for the four bacterial strains. In terms of bactericidal effect, Escherichia coli MTCC 443 was found as the most sensitive strain, while in terms of growth inhibition, Bacillus subtilis was the most sensitive strain. Staphylococcus aureus NCIM 5021 was the most resistant among the tested bacterial strains.

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Acknowledgments

The authors would like to acknowledge the Sophisticated Analytical Instrument Facility (SAIF), IIT Bombay, for providing FEG-TEM, FEG-SEM, and ICP-AES facilities and the Department of Metallurgy Engineering and Materials Science (MEMS), IIT Bombay, for providing the DLS measurement and zeta potential analyzer for characterization of the nanoparticles. The authors would also like to thank Dr. Gauri Shukla for assisting in the preparation of the set-up for photochemical synthesis of decahedral silver nanoparticles.

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Sharda Bharti performed all the experiments, analyzed the results, and prepared the manuscript. Prof. Suparna Mukherji supervised the work and revised the manuscript. Prof. Soumyo Mukherji co-supervised the research work. All authors discussed the experiments and the results and contributed to the final manuscript.

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Correspondence to Suparna Mukherji.

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Bharti, S., Mukherji, S. & Mukherji, S. Enhanced antibacterial activity of decahedral silver nanoparticles. J Nanopart Res 23, 36 (2020). https://doi.org/10.1007/s11051-020-05106-z

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Keywords

  • Antibacterial activity
  • Minimum bactericidal concentration
  • Minimum inhibitory concentration
  • Decahedral silver nanoparticles
  • Localized surface plasmon resonance