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Nanotechnology. 2015 Jul 17;26(28):285102. doi: 10.1088/0957-4484/26/28/285102. Epub 2015 Jun 29.

Silver nanoparticles embedded mesoporous SiO₂ nanosphere: an effective anticandidal agent against Candida albicans 077.

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School of Engineering Sciences and Technology, University of Hyderabad, Hyderabad 500046, India.


Candida albicans is a diploid fungus that causes common infections such as denture stomatitis, thrush, urinary tract infections, etc. Immunocompromised patients can become severely infected by this fungus. Development of an effective anticandidal agent against this pathogenic fungus, therefore, will be very useful for practical application. In this work, Ag-embedded mesoporous silica nanoparticles (mSiO2@AgNPs) have successfully been synthesized and their anticandidal activities against C. albicans have been studied. The mSiO2@AgNPs nanoparticles (d ∼ 400 nm) were designed using pre-synthesized Ag nanoparticles and tetraethyl orthosilicate (TEOS) as a precursor for SiO2 in the presence of cetyltrimethyl ammonium bromide (CTAB) as an easily removable soft template. A simple, cost-effective, and environmentally friendly approach has been adopted to synthesize silver (Ag) nanoparticles using silver nitrate and leaf extract of Azadirachta indica. The mesopores, with size-equivalent diameter of the micelles (d = 4-6 nm), were generated on the SiO2 surface by calcination after removal of the CTAB template. The morphology and surface structure of mSiO2@AgNPs were characterized through x-ray diffraction (XRD), Fourier-transform infrared spectroscopy (FTIR), particle size analysis (PSA), atomic force microscopy (AFM), field emission scanning electron microscopy (FESEM), Brunauer-Emmett-Teller (BET) and high-resolution transmission electron microscopy (HRTEM). The HRTEM micrograph reveals the well-ordered mesoporous structure of the SiO2 sphere. The antifungal activities of mSiO2@AgNPs on the C. albicans cell have been studied through microscopy and are seen to increase with increasing dose of mSiO2@AgNPs, suggesting mSiO2@AgNPs to be a potential antifungal agent for C. albicans 077.

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