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Negatively charged silver nanoparticles with potent antibacterial activity and reduced toxicity for pharmaceutical preparations

Authors Salvioni L, Galbiati E, Collico V, Alessio G, Avvakumova S, Corsi F, Tortora P, Prosperi D, Colombo M

Received 16 November 2016

Accepted for publication 14 January 2017

Published 31 March 2017 Volume 2017:12 Pages 2517—2530

DOI https://doi.org/10.2147/IJN.S127799

Checked for plagiarism Yes

Review by Single-blind

Peer reviewers approved by Dr Yu Mi

Peer reviewer comments 4

Editor who approved publication: Dr Thomas Webster


Lucia Salvioni,1 Elisabetta Galbiati,1 Veronica Collico,1 Giulia Alessio,1 Svetlana Avvakumova,1 Fabio Corsi,2,3 Paolo Tortora,1 Davide Prosperi,1 Miriam Colombo1

1Nanobiolab, Department of Biotechnology and Bioscience, University of Milano-Bicocca, 2Biological and Clinical Science Department, University of Milan, Milano, 3Surgery Department, Breast Unit, IRCCS S Maugeri Foundation, Pavia, Italy

Background: The discovery of new solutions with antibacterial activity as efficient and safe alternatives to common preservatives (such as parabens) and to combat emerging infections and drug-resistant bacterial pathogens is highly expected in cosmetics and pharmaceutics. Colloidal silver nanoparticles (NPs) are attracting interest as novel effective antimicrobial agents for the prevention of several infectious diseases.
Methods: Water-soluble, negatively charged silver nanoparticles (AgNPs) were synthesized by reduction with citric and tannic acid and characterized by transmission electron microscopy, dynamic light scattering, zeta potential, differential centrifuge sedimentation, and ultraviolet–visible spectroscopy. AgNPs were tested with model Gram-negative and Gram-positive bacteria in comparison to two different kinds of commercially available AgNPs.
Results: In this work, AgNPs with higher antibacterial activity compared to the commercially available colloidal silver solutions were prepared and investigated. Bacteria were plated and the antibacterial activity was tested at the same concentration of silver ions in all samples. The AgNPs did not show any significant reduction in the antibacterial activity for an acceptable time period. In addition, AgNPs were transferred to organic phase and retained their antibacterial efficacy in both aqueous and nonaqueous media and exhibited no toxicity in eukaryotic cells.
Conclusion: We developed AgNPs with a 20 nm diameter and negative zeta potential with powerful antibacterial activity and low toxicity compared to currently available colloidal silver, suitable for cosmetic preservatives and pharmaceutical preparations administrable to humans and/or animals as needed.

Keywords: silver nanoparticles, antibacterial activity, long-term effect, nanoparticle toxicity, phase transfer

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