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Antibacterial mechanisms of a novel type picosecond laser-generated silver-titanium nanoparticles and their toxicity to human cells

Authors Korshed P, Li L, Liu Z, Mironov A, Wang T

Received 22 April 2017

Accepted for publication 20 June 2017

Published 20 December 2017 Volume 2018:13 Pages 89—101


Checked for plagiarism Yes

Review by Single-blind

Peer reviewers approved by Dr Thiruganesh Ramasamy

Peer reviewer comments 2

Editor who approved publication: Dr Thomas Webster

Peri Korshed,1 Lin Li,2 Zhu Liu,3 Aleksandr Mironov,4 Tao Wang1

1School of Biological Science, Faculty of Biology, Medicine and Health, 2Laser Processing Research Centre, School of Mechanical, Aerospace and Civil Engineering, 3School of Materials, 4Core Research Facilities, Faculty of Biology, Medicine and Health, The University of Manchester, Manchester, UK

In this study, we explored the antibacterial mechanisms for a novel type of Ag-TiO2 compound nanoparticles (NPs) produced from an Ag-TiO2 alloy using a picosecond laser and evaluated the toxicity of the Ag-TiO2 NPs to a range of human cell types. Transmission electron microscopy was used to determine the morphology, shapes, and size distribution of the laser-generated Ag-TiO2 NPs. UV-visible spectrometer was used to confirm the shift of light absorbance of the NPs toward visible light wavelength. Results showed that the laser-generated Ag-TiO2 NPs had significant antibacterial activities against both Gram-negative and Gram-positive bacterial strains, including Escherichia coli, Pseudomonas aeruginosa, and the methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus. Increased level of reactive oxygen species was produced by E. coli after exposure to the Ag-TiO2 NPs, which was accompanied with lipid peroxidation, glutathione depletion, disintegration of cell membrane and protein leakage, leading to the cell death. Five types of human cells originated from lung (A549), liver (HePG2), kidney (HEK293), endothelium cells (human coronary artery endothelial cells [hCAECs]), and skin (human dermal fibroblast cells [HDFc]) were used to evaluate the cytotoxicity of the laser-generated Ag-TiO2 NPs. A weak but statistically significant decrease in cell proliferation was observed for hCAECs, A549 and HDFc cells when co-cultured with 2.5 µg/mL or 20 µg/mL of the laser-generated Ag-TiO2 NPs for 48 hours. However, this effect was no longer apparent when a higher concentration of NPs (20 µg/mL) was used after 72 hours of co-culture with human cells, suggesting a possible adaptive process in the cells had occurred. We conclude that picosecond laser-generated Ag-TiO2 NPs have a broad spectrum of antibacterial effect, including against the drug-resistant strain, with multiple underlying molecular mechanisms and low human cell toxicity. The antimicrobial properties of the new type of picoseconds laser-generated Ag-TiO2 compound NPs could have potential biomedical applications.

Keywords: silver-titanium nanoparticles, bactericidal, picoseconds laser, reactive oxygen species, cytotoxicity, compound nanoparticles, methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus

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