Bactericidal and Fungistatic Properties of LDPE Modified with a Biocide Containing Metal Nanoparticles
Materials (Basel). 2021 Jul 28;14(15):4228. doi: 10.3390/ma14154228.
The aim of this study was to ascertain whether the combined action of metal nanoparticles (silver, copper, zinc oxide, iron oxide) would ensure the appropriate biocidal properties oflow-density polyethylene (LDPE) against pathogenic microorganisms. According to the research hypothesis, appropriately selected concentrations of the applied metal nanoparticles allow for a high level of biocidal activity of polymeric materials against both model and pathogenic bacterial strains (Escherichia coli, Staphylococcus aureus, Pseudomonas aeruginosa, Legionella pneumophila, Salmonella enterica subsp. enterica) and fungi (Aspergillus brasiliensis, Saccharomyces cerevisiae, Candida albicans, Penicilium expansum), whilst ensuring the safety of use due to the lack of migration of particles to the surrounding environment. Studies have shown that adding 4% of a biocide containing Ag, Cu, ZnO, and Fe2O3 nanoparticles is the most optimal solution to reduce the number of S. aureus, S. enterica and P. aeruginosa by over 99%. The lowest effectiveness was observed against L. pneumophila bacteria. As for E. coli, a higher biocide content did not significantly increase the antibacterial activity. The results showed a high efficiency of the applied biocide at a concentration of 2% against fungal strains. The high efficiency of the obtained biocidal results was influenced by the uniform dispersion of nanoparticles in the material and their low degree of agglomeration. Furthermore, a slight migration of components to the environment is the basis for further research in the field of the application of the developed materials in industry.