Biosynthesis of Au, Ag and Au-Ag bimetallic nanoparticles using protein extracts of Deinococcus radiodurans and evaluation of their cytotoxicity

Jiulong Li, Bing Tian, Tao Li, Shang Dai, Yulan Weng, Jianjiang Lu, Xiaolin Xu, Ye Jin, Renjiang Pang, Yuejin Hua
International Journal of Nanomedicine 2018, 13: 1411-1424

Background: Biosynthesis of noble metallic nanoparticles (NPs) has attracted significant interest due to their environmental friendly and biocompatible properties.

Methods: In this study, we investigated syntheses of Au, Ag and Au-Ag bimetallic NPs using protein extracts of Deinococcus radiodurans , which demonstrated powerful metal-reducing ability. The obtained NPs were characterized and analyzed by various spectroscopy techniques.

Results: The D. radiodurans protein extract-mediated silver nanoparticles (Drp-AgNPs) were preferably monodispersed and stably distributed compared to D. radiodurans protein extract-mediated gold nanoparticles (Drp-AuNPs). Drp-AgNPs and Drp-AuNPs exhibited spherical morphology with average sizes of 37.13±5.97 nm and 51.72±7.38 nm and zeta potential values of -18.31±1.39 mV and -15.17±1.24 mV at pH 7, respectively. The release efficiencies of Drp-AuNPs and Drp-AgNPs measured at 24 h were 3.99% and 18.20%, respectively. During the synthesis process, Au(III) was reduced to Au(I) and further to Au(0) and Ag(I) was reduced to Ag(0) by interactions with the hydroxyl, amine, carboxyl, phospho or sulfhydryl groups of proteins and subsequently stabilized by these groups. Some characteristics of Drp-AuNPs were different from those of Drp-AgNPs, which could be attributed to the interaction of the NPs with different binding groups of proteins. The Drp-AgNPs could be further formed into Au-Ag bimetallic NPs via galvanic replacement reaction. Drp-AuNPs and Au-Ag bimetallic NPs showed low cytotoxicity against MCF-10A cells due to the lower level of intracellular reactive oxygen species (ROS) generation than that of Drp-AgNPs.

Conclusions: These results are crucial to understand the biosynthetic mechanism and properties of noble metallic NPs using the protein extracts of bacteria. The biocompatible Au or Au-Ag bimetallic NPs are applicable in biosensing, bioimaging and biomedicine.

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