Artificial Cells, Nanomedicine, and Biotechnology

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ARTIFICIAL CELLS, NANOMEDICINE, AND BIOTECHNOLOGY 2018, VOL. 46, NO. S1, S115–S126 https://doi.org/10.1080/21691401.2017.1414825 Pharmaceutical aspects of silver nanoparticles Prateek Mathur, Swati Jha, Suman Ramteke and N. K. Jain Department of Pharmaceutics, School of Pharmaceutical Sciences, Rajiv Gandhi Technical University, Bhopal, India ABSTRACT Silver nanoparticles are particles in the size ranging between 1 and 100nm. The two major methods used for synthesis of silver nanoparticle are the physical and chemical methods with the disadvantage that they are expensive and can also have toxicity. Biological method is being used as an expedient alternative, as this approach is environment-friendly and less toxic and it includes plant extracts, micro- organism, fungi, etc. The major applications of silver nanoparticles in the medical field include diagnos- tic applications and therapeutic applications, apart from its antimicrobial activity. Due to their nanotoxicity, AgNPs have a several drawbacks too. This review presents a complete view of the mech- anism of action, synthesis, the pharmacokinetics of silver nanoparticles, different formulations of AgNPs used in biomedical applications, infertility management, antibacterial effects, skin damage, burns, cancer treatment, etc. and various applications of silver nanoparticles together with the possible toxicological challenge. ARTICLE HISTORY Received 29 September 2017 Revised 28 November 2017 Accepted 5 December 2017 KEYWORDS Silver nanoparticles; synthesis; mechanism; formulations; applications; toxicity Introduction Nanoparticles (NP) are natural, incidental or manufactured material containing particles, where 50% or more of the par- ticles lie in the size range 1–100nm [1]. Nanoparticles could be broadly classified as (i) inorganic, and (ii) organic. Inorganic nanoparticles incorporate semi-conductor nanopar- ticles (like ZnO, ZnS and CdS), metallic nanoparticles (like Au, Ag, Cu and Al) and magnetic nanoparticles (like Co, Fe and Ni); while organic nanoparticles subsume carbon nanopar- ticles (like fullerenes, quantum dots, carbon nano tubes). Gold and Ag (noble metal) nanoparticles furnish superior characteristics with useful flexibility [2]. Engineered nanoparticles (ENPs) are endowed with exclu- sive characteristics, such as high surface area to volume ratio, high chemical reactivity, peculiar antimicrobial/fungicidal activity and biocompatible surface properties. These proper- ties are ascribed to small particle size of nanoparticles and a particular size regime [3]. History Silver has a long history of its usage in different forms and for different purposes. For centuries, the antibacterial proper- ties of silver have been used to fumigate potable water by storage in silver containers [4]. There is anecdotal evidence for the use of nanosilver in ancient Egypt and Rome [5]. The Macedonians used silver plates to improve wound healing and Hippocrates used silver in the treatment of ulcers. In 1520, Paracelsus used silver internally and also applied silver nitrate as a caustic for the treatment of wounds, a practice that continues today [6]. In 1614, Angelo Sala administered silver nitrate internally as a counterirritant, as a purgative and for the treatment of brain infections [6]. C. S. F. Crede is cred- ited with the first scientific publication to describe the med- ical use of silver in the late nineteenth century. Crede used eye drops containing 1% silver nitrate solution to treat eye infections in new-born [5]. In the United States, colloidal nanosilver, i.e. suspensions of silver particles in liquid, which was registered in 1954 as a biocidal material has been used in medications for nearly one hundred years [5,7]. Use of silver for antimicrobial properties is not a recent develop- ment [7]. Synthesis of silver nanoparticle Silver nanoparticles are generally synthesized by two approaches, (i) “top to bottom” approach and (ii) bottom to top approach. In top to bottom approach, suitable bulk material is broken down into smaller fine particles by size reduction using vari- ous techniques like grinding, milling, sputtering, thermal/laser ablation, etc., thus the “top-down” method comprises of mechanical grinding of bulk metals with subsequent stabiliza- tion using colloidal protecting agents while in bottom to top approach, nanoparticles are synthesized using chemical and biological methods by self-assembly of atoms to new nuclei, which grow into nano size particles while the “bottom-up” methods include chemical reduction, electrochemical meth- ods and sono-decomposition [8,9]. The biggest advantage of “bottom to top” approach method is the production of a large quantity of nanoparticles CONTACT N. K. Jain dr.jnarendr@gmail.com Department of Pharmaceutics, School of Pharmaceutical Sciences, Rajiv Gandhi Technical University, Bhopal, India " 2017 Informa UK Limited, trading as Taylor & Francis Group

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