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Nanomaterials 2018, 8(9), 715; https://doi.org/10.3390/nano8090715

Wall Thickness of Industrial Multi-Walled Carbon Nanotubes Is Not a Crucial Factor for Their Degradation by Sodium Hypochlorite

1
Faculty of Biology, 1-12 Leninskie Gory, Lomonosov Moscow State University, Moscow 119991, Russia
2
Federal Research and Clinical Center of Physical-Chemical Medicine of Federal Medical-Biological Agency, Malaya Pirogovskaya, 1a, Moscow 119435, Russia
3
Faculty of Fundamental Medicine, 31-5 Lomonosovsky Prospekt, Lomonosov Moscow State University, Moscow 117192, Russia
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 17 August 2018 / Revised: 5 September 2018 / Accepted: 7 September 2018 / Published: 12 September 2018
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Abstract

The propensity of multi-walled carbon nanotubes (MWCNTs) for biodegradation is important for their safe use in medical and technological applications. Here, we compared the oxidative degradation of two samples of industrial-grade MWCNTs—we called them MWCNT-d and MWCNT-t—upon their treatment with sodium hypochlorite (NaOCl). The MWCNTs had a similar inner diameter but they differed about 2-fold in the outer diameter. Electron microscopy combined with morphometric analysis revealed the different degradation of the two types of MWCNTs after their incubation with NaOCl—the thicker MWCNT-d were damaged more significantly than the thinner MWCNT-t. The both types of MWCNTs degraded at the inner side, but only MWCNT-d lost a significant number of the outer graphitic layers. Raman spectroscopy demonstrated that both MWCNTs had a similar high defectiveness. Using energy-dispersive X-ray spectroscopy, we have shown that the more degradable MWCNT-d contained the same level of oxygen as MWCNT-t, but more metal impurities. The obtained results suggest that the biodegradability of MWCNTs depends not only on the wall thickness but also on the defects and impurities. Thus, the biodegradability can be regulated by the synthesis conditions or the post-synthesis modifications. Such degradation flexibility may be important for both medical and industrial applications. View Full-Text
Keywords: Industrial-grade MWCNTs; biodegradation; sodium hypochlorite; oxidation Industrial-grade MWCNTs; biodegradation; sodium hypochlorite; oxidation
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This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited (CC BY 4.0).

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Masyutin, A.G.; Bagrov, D.V.; Vlasova, I.I.; Nikishin, I.I.; Klinov, D.V.; Sychevskaya, K.A.; Onishchenko, G.E.; Erokhina, M.V. Wall Thickness of Industrial Multi-Walled Carbon Nanotubes Is Not a Crucial Factor for Their Degradation by Sodium Hypochlorite. Nanomaterials 2018, 8, 715.

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