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Synthesis of silver nanoparticles using Dioscorea bulbifera tuber extract and evaluation of its synergistic potential in combination with antimicrobial agents

Authors Ghosh S, Patil, Ahire, Kitture R, Kale S, Pardesi, Cameotra, Bellare J, Dhavale, Jabgunde, Chopade B

Received 3 August 2011

Accepted for publication 4 October 2011

Published 1 February 2012 Volume 2012:7 Pages 483—496


Review by Single anonymous peer review

Peer reviewer comments 2

Sougata Ghosh1, Sumersing Patil1, Mehul Ahire1, Rohini Kitture2, Sangeeta Kale3, Karishma Pardesi4, Swaranjit S Cameotra5, Jayesh Bellare6, Dilip D Dhavale7, Amit Jabgunde7, Balu A Chopade1
1Institute of Bioinformatics and Biotechnology, University of Pune, Pune, 2Department of Electronic Science, Fergusson College, Pune, 3Department of Applied Physics, Defense Institute of Advanced Technology, Girinagar, Pune, 4Department of Microbiology, University of Pune, Pune, 5Institute of Microbial Technology, Chandigarh, 6Department of Chemical Engineering, Indian Institute of Technology, Mumbai, 7Garware Research Centre, Department of Chemistry, University of Pune, Pune, India

Background: Development of an environmentally benign process for the synthesis of silver nanomaterials is an important aspect of current nanotechnology research. Among the 600 species of the genus Dioscorea, Dioscorea bulbifera has profound therapeutic applications due to its unique phytochemistry. In this paper, we report on the rapid synthesis of silver nanoparticles by reduction of aqueous Ag+ ions using D. bulbifera tuber extract.
Methods and results: Phytochemical analysis revealed that D. bulbifera tuber extract is rich in flavonoid, phenolics, reducing sugars, starch, diosgenin, ascorbic acid, and citric acid. The biosynthesis process was quite fast, and silver nanoparticles were formed within 5 hours. Ultraviolet-visible absorption spectroscopy, transmission electron microscopy, high-resolution transmission electron microscopy, energy dispersive spectroscopy, and x-ray diffraction confirmed reduction of the Ag+ ions. Varied morphology of the bioreduced silver nanoparticles included spheres, triangles, and hexagons. Optimization studies revealed that the maximum rate of synthesis could be achieved with 0.7 mM AgNO3 solution at 50°C in 5 hours. The resulting silver nanoparticles were found to possess potent antibacterial activity against both Gram-negative and Gram-positive bacteria. Beta-lactam (piperacillin) and macrolide (erythromycin) antibiotics showed a 3.6-fold and 3-fold increase, respectively, in combination with silver nanoparticles selectively against multidrug-resistant Acinetobacter baumannii. Notable synergy was seen between silver nanoparticles and chloramphenicol or vancomycin against Pseudomonas aeruginosa, and was supported by a 4.9-fold and 4.2-fold increase in zone diameter, respectively. Similarly, we found a maximum 11.8-fold increase in zone diameter of streptomycin when combined with silver nanoparticles against E. coli, providing strong evidence for the synergistic action of a combination of antibiotics and silver nanoparticles.
Conclusion: This is the first report on the synthesis of silver nanoparticles using D. bulbifera tuber extract followed by an estimation of its synergistic potential for enhancement of the antibacterial activity of broad spectrum antimicrobial agents.

Keywords: Dioscorea bulbifera tuber extract, silver nanoparticles, antimicrobial synergy

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