Special Issue "Green Synthesis of Nanomaterials and Their Biological Applications"

A special issue of Nanomaterials (ISSN 2079-4991). This special issue belongs to the section "Biology and Medicines".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (30 June 2021).

Special Issue Editor

Dr. Giovanni Benelli
grade E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
Department of Agriculture, Food and Environment, University of Pisa, via del Borghetto 80, 56124 Pisa, Italy
Interests: biological control; biopesticides; ecotoxicology; green insecticides; insect behavior; insect vectors; mating disruption; mosquitoes; parasitoids; pheromones; repellents; ticks
Special Issues and Collections in MDPI journals

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Nanomaterials possess highly interesting physical and chemical properties. They have a key role in the development of novel and effective insecticides, acaricides, fungicides, drugs, catalysts and sensors, to cite just some key categories. The synthesis of nanomaterials is often achieved with chemical and physical methods needing the use of extremely toxic chemicals or high-energy inputs. To reduce the environmental impact of these synthetic routes, researchers have recently shifted on the “green synthesis”, where microbial, animal-, and plant-borne compounds can be used as cheap reducing and stabilising agents to fabricate nanomaterials. Green synthesis routes are cheap, eco-friendly, allowing the fabrication of nanomaterials with controlled size and shape—two key features determining their bioactivity. However, real-world applications of green-fabricated nanomaterials are largely unexplored. In this framework, our journal Nanomaterials already dedicated a successful Special Issue on the topic ("Green synthesis of nanomaterials" in 2018-2019).

The present Special Issue represents the continuation of the former one, with a collection of top-quality articles in this research area. Particular attention is devoted to entomological research, since the widespread overuse of synthetic insecticides leads to quick development of resistance in target species as well as to serious non-target effects on human health and environment. A comparable scenario is well recognised in parasitology about the employ of drugs to manage protozoan parasites and helminths, with extremely risky consequences for public health. Therefore, developing new and effective products to fight pests and parasites is a major challenge for modern entomology and parasitology. Despite the huge amount of research on the so-called “green” insecticides and antiparasitics, mainly covering products of microbial and botanical origin, their practical use in real-world conditions remains limited. This is often due to lack of prolonged efficacy and challenging regulations. Thus, nanotechnologies are currently considered a major option to improve the efficacy and stability of both classic and green insecticides, repellents and antiparasitic drugs, relying to various nanocarriers, including nanoencapsulation and nanoemulsions.

Overall, the present Special Issue is open to submissions about green synthesis of nanomaterials as well as on the possible biological applications, including studies dealing with entomology, parasitology, biomedicine, and environmental research. Both Original researches and Reviews will be considered for publication.

Prof. Dr. Giovanni Benelli
Guest Editor

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All papers will be peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Nanomaterials is an international peer-reviewed open access monthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 2200 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.

Keywords

  • biotechnology
  • eco-friendly nanomaterials
  • entomology
  • green nanosynthesis
  • nanoencapsulation
  • nanoemulsion
  • nanoparticles
  • nanopesticides
  • parasitology
  • nanobiomedicine

Published Papers (7 papers)

Order results
Result details
Select all
Export citation of selected articles as:

Research

Jump to: Review

Article
Tunable Terahertz Metamaterial with Electromagnetically Induced Transparency Characteristic for Sensing Application
Nanomaterials 2021, 11(9), 2175; https://doi.org/10.3390/nano11092175 - 25 Aug 2021
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 363
Abstract
We present and demonstrate a MEMS-based tunable terahertz metamaterial (TTM) composed of inner triadius and outer electric split-ring resonator (eSRR) structures. With the aim to explore the electromagnetic responses of TTM device, different geometrical parameters are compared and discussed to optimize the suitable [...] Read more.
We present and demonstrate a MEMS-based tunable terahertz metamaterial (TTM) composed of inner triadius and outer electric split-ring resonator (eSRR) structures. With the aim to explore the electromagnetic responses of TTM device, different geometrical parameters are compared and discussed to optimize the suitable TTM design, including the length, radius, and height of TTM device. The height of triadius structure could be changed by using MEMS technique to perform active tunability. TTM shows the polarization-dependent and electromagnetic induced transparency (EIT) characteristics owing to the eSRR configuration. The electromagnetic responses of TTM exhibit tunable characteristics in resonance, polarization-dependent, and electromagnetically induced transparency (EIT). By properly tailoring the length and height of the inner triadius structure and the radius of the outer eSRR structure, the corresponding resonance tuning range reaches 0.32 THz. In addition to the above optical characteristics of TTM, we further investigate its potential application in a refraction index sensor. TTM is exposed on the surrounding ambient with different refraction indexes. The corresponding key sensing performances, such as figure of merit (FOM), sensitivity (S), and quality factor (Q-factor) values, are calculated and discussed, respectively. The calculated sensitivity of TTM is 0.379 THz/RIU, while the average values of Q-factor and FOM are 66.01 and 63.83, respectively. These characteristics indicate that the presented MEMS-based TTM device could be widely used in tunable filters, perfect absorbers, high-efficient environmental sensors, and optical switches applications for THz-wave optoelectronics. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Green Synthesis of Nanomaterials and Their Biological Applications)
Show Figures

Figure 1

Article
Green Synthesis of Silver Nanoparticles Using Diospyros malabarica Fruit Extract and Assessments of Their Antimicrobial, Anticancer and Catalytic Reduction of 4-Nitrophenol (4-NP)
Nanomaterials 2021, 11(8), 1999; https://doi.org/10.3390/nano11081999 - 04 Aug 2021
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1164
Abstract
The green synthesis of silver nanoparticles (AgNPs) has currently been gaining wide applications in the medical field of nanomedicine. Green synthesis is one of the most effective procedures for the production of AgNPs. The Diospyros malabarica tree grown throughout India has been reported [...] Read more.
The green synthesis of silver nanoparticles (AgNPs) has currently been gaining wide applications in the medical field of nanomedicine. Green synthesis is one of the most effective procedures for the production of AgNPs. The Diospyros malabarica tree grown throughout India has been reported to have antioxidant and various therapeutic applications. In the context of this, we have investigated the fruit of Diospyros malabarica for the potential of forming AgNPs and analyzed its antibacterial and anticancer activity. We have developed a rapid, single-step, cost-effective and eco-friendly method for the synthesis of AgNPs using Diospyros malabarica aqueous fruit extract at room temperature. The AgNPs began to form just after the reaction was initiated. The formation and characterization of AgNPs were confirmed by UV-Vis spectrophotometry, XRD, FTIR, DLS, Zeta potential, FESEM, EDX, TEM and photoluminescence (PL) methods. The average size of AgNPs, in accordance with TEM results, was found to be 17.4 nm. The antibacterial activity of the silver nanoparticles against pathogenic microorganism strains of Staphylococcus aureus and Escherichia coli was confirmed by the well diffusion method and was found to inhibit the growth of the bacteria with an average zone of inhibition size of (8.4 ± 0.3 mm and 12.1 ± 0.5 mm) and (6.1 ± 0.7 mm and 13.1 ± 0.5 mm) at 500 and 1000 µg/mL concentrations of AgNPs, respectively. The anticancer effect of the AgNPs was confirmed by MTT assay using the U87-MG (human primary glioblastoma) cell line. The IC50 value was found to be 58.63 ± 5.74 μg/mL. The results showed that green synthesized AgNPs exhibited significant antimicrobial and anticancer potency. In addition, nitrophenols, which are regarded as priority pollutants by the United States Environmental Protection Agency (USEPA), can also be catalytically reduced to less toxic aminophenols by utilizing synthesized AgNPs. As a model reaction, AgNPs are employed as a catalyst in the reduction of 4-nitrophenol to 4-aminophenol, which is an intermediate for numerous analgesics and antipyretic drugs. Thus, the study is expected to help immensely in the pharmaceutical industries in developing antimicrobial drugs and/or as an anticancer drug, as well as in the cosmetic and food industries. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Green Synthesis of Nanomaterials and Their Biological Applications)
Show Figures

Graphical abstract

Article
Gallic Acid Based Black Tea Extract as a Stabilizing Agent in ZnO Particles Green Synthesis
Nanomaterials 2021, 11(7), 1816; https://doi.org/10.3390/nano11071816 - 13 Jul 2021
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 717
Abstract
In this work, zinc oxide particles (ZnO NPs) green synthesis with the application of black tea extract (BT) is presented. A thorough investigation of the properties of the extract and the obtained materials was conducted by using Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy (FTIR), liquid [...] Read more.
In this work, zinc oxide particles (ZnO NPs) green synthesis with the application of black tea extract (BT) is presented. A thorough investigation of the properties of the extract and the obtained materials was conducted by using Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy (FTIR), liquid chromatography-mass spectrometry (LC-MS), X-ray diffraction (XRD), scanning electron microscopy (SEM), thermogravimetric analysis (TGA), and quadrupole mass spectroscopy (QMS). The obtained results indicated that the amount of used BT strongly influenced the morphology, chemical, and crystalline structure of the obtained particles. The investigation demonstrated that the substance present in black tea (BT) extract, which was adsorbed on the ZnO surface, was in fact gallic acid. It was found that gallic acid controls the crystallization process of ZnO by temporarily blocking the zinc cations. Additionally, these organic molecules interact with the hydroxide group of the precipitant. This blocks the dehydration process stabilizing the zinc hydroxide forms and hinders its transformation into zinc oxide. Performed measurements indicated that obtained ZnO particles have great antioxidant and antimicrobial properties, which are significantly correlated with ZnO–gallic acid interactions. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Green Synthesis of Nanomaterials and Their Biological Applications)
Show Figures

Graphical abstract

Article
Developing a Highly Stable Carlina acaulis Essential Oil Nanoemulsion for Managing Lobesia botrana
Nanomaterials 2020, 10(9), 1867; https://doi.org/10.3390/nano10091867 - 18 Sep 2020
Cited by 13 | Viewed by 1316
Abstract
The growing interest in the development of green pest management strategies is leading to the exploitation of essential oils (EOs) as promising botanical pesticides. In this respect, nanotechnology could efficiently support the use of EOs through their encapsulation into stable nanoformulations, such as [...] Read more.
The growing interest in the development of green pest management strategies is leading to the exploitation of essential oils (EOs) as promising botanical pesticides. In this respect, nanotechnology could efficiently support the use of EOs through their encapsulation into stable nanoformulations, such as nanoemulsions (NEs), to improve their stability and efficacy. This technology assures the improvement of the chemical stability, hydrophilicity, and environmental persistence of EOs, giving an added value for the fabrication of natural insecticides effective against a wide spectrum of insect vectors and pests of public and agronomical importance. Carlina acaulis (Asteraceae) root EO has been recently proposed as a promising ingredient of a new generation of botanical insecticides. In the present study, a highly stable C. acaulis-based NE was developed. Interestingly, such a nanosystem was able to encapsulate 6% (w/w) of C. acaulis EO, showing a mean diameter of around 140 nm and a SOR (surfactant-to-oil ratio) of 0.6. Its stability was evaluated in a storage period of six months and corroborated by an accelerated stability study. Therefore, the C. acaulis EO and C. acaulis-based NE were evaluated for their toxicity against 1st instar larvae of the European grapevine moth (EGVM), Lobesia botrana (Denis & Schiffermüller, 1775) (Lepidoptera: Tortricidae), a major vineyard pest. The chemical composition of C. acaulis EO was investigated by gas chromatography–mass spectrometry (GC–MS) revealing carlina oxide, a polyacetylene, as the main constituent. In toxicity assays, both the C. acaulis EO and the C. acaulis-based NE were highly toxic to L. botrana larvae, with LC50 values of 7.299 and 9.044 µL/mL for C. acaulis EO and NE, respectively. The C. acaulis-based NE represents a promising option to develop highly stable botanical insecticides for pest management. To date, this study represents the first evidence about the insecticidal toxicity of EOs and EO-based NEs against this major grapevine pest. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Green Synthesis of Nanomaterials and Their Biological Applications)
Show Figures

Figure 1

Article
Evaluation of Silica-Coated Insect Proof Nets for the Control of Aphis fabae, Sitophilus oryzae, and Tribolium confusum
Nanomaterials 2020, 10(9), 1658; https://doi.org/10.3390/nano10091658 - 24 Aug 2020
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 1036
Abstract
Insect proof nets are widely used in agriculture as mechanical and physical barriers to regulate pest populations in a greenhouse. However, their integration in the greenhouse ventilation openings is highly associated with the decrease of air flow and the adequate ventilation. Thus, there [...] Read more.
Insect proof nets are widely used in agriculture as mechanical and physical barriers to regulate pest populations in a greenhouse. However, their integration in the greenhouse ventilation openings is highly associated with the decrease of air flow and the adequate ventilation. Thus, there is need for alternative pest management tools that do not impair adequate ventilation. In the present study, we tested four net formulations of relatively large mesh size coated with SiO2 nanoparticles, namely, ED3, ED3-P, ED5, and ED5-P to evaluate their insecticidal properties against adults of Aphis fabae and Sitophilus oryzae and larvae of Tribolium confusum. ED3 and ED5 nets were coated with SiO2 nanoparticles of different diameter, while in the case of ED3-P and ED5-P, paraffin was added to increase the mass of the deposited particles on the net’s surface. In the first series of bioassays, the knockdown and mortality rates of these species were evaluated after exposure to the aforementioned net formulations for 5, 10, 15, 20, 25, 30, 60, 90, and 180 min. In the second series of bioassays, knockdown and mortality of these species were recorded after 1, 7, and 10 days of post-exposure to the nets for different time intervals (15, 30, and 60 min). Based on our results, all nets significantly affected A. fabae, since all insects were dead at the 1-day post-exposure period to the silica-treated nets. Conversely, at the same interval, no effect on either S. oryzae adults or T. confusum larvae was observed. However, in the case of S. oryzae, the efficacy of all nets reached 100% 7 days after the exposure, even for adults that had been initially exposed for 15 min to the treated nets. Among the species tested, T. confusum larvae exhibited the lowest mortality rate, which did not exceed 34% at the 10 days of post-exposure interval. Our work underlines the efficacy of treated nets in pest management programs, under different application scenarios, at the pre- and post-harvest stages of agricultural commodities. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Green Synthesis of Nanomaterials and Their Biological Applications)
Article
Terahertz Metamaterial with Multiple Resonances for Biosensing Application
Nanomaterials 2020, 10(6), 1038; https://doi.org/10.3390/nano10061038 - 29 May 2020
Cited by 26 | Viewed by 1231
Abstract
A sickle-shaped metamaterial (SSM) based biochemical sensor with multiple resonances was investigated in the terahertz frequency range. The electromagnetic responses of SSM were found to be four resonances, namely dipolar, quadrupolar, octupolar and hexadecapolar plasmon resonances. They were generated from the interactions between [...] Read more.
A sickle-shaped metamaterial (SSM) based biochemical sensor with multiple resonances was investigated in the terahertz frequency range. The electromagnetic responses of SSM were found to be four resonances, namely dipolar, quadrupolar, octupolar and hexadecapolar plasmon resonances. They were generated from the interactions between SSM and perpendicularly incident terahertz waves. The sensing performances of SSM-based biochemical sensors were evaluated by changing ambient environments and analyte varieties. The highest values of sensitivity and figure of merit (FOM) for SSM covered with analyte thin-films were 471 GHz/RIU (refraction index unit) and 94 RIU−1, respectively. In order to further investigate the biosensing ability of the proposed SSM device, dielectric hemispheres and microfluidic chips were adopted to imitate dry and hydrous biological specimens, respectively. The results show that the sensing abilities of SSM-based biochemical sensors could be enhanced by increasing either the number of hemispheres or the channel width of the microfluidic chip. The highest sensitivity was 405 GHz/RIU for SSM integrated with microfluidic chips. Finally, three more realistic models were simulated to imitate real sensing situations, and the corresponding highest sensitivity was 502 GHz/RIU. The proposed SSM device paves the way to possible uses in biochemical sensing applications. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Green Synthesis of Nanomaterials and Their Biological Applications)
Show Figures

Figure 1

Review

Jump to: Research

Review
High Potency of Organic and Inorganic Nanoparticles to Treat Cystic Echinococcosis: An Evidence-Based Review
Nanomaterials 2020, 10(12), 2538; https://doi.org/10.3390/nano10122538 - 17 Dec 2020
Cited by 4 | Viewed by 895
Abstract
Since there is no potential, effective vaccine available, treatment is the only controlling option against hydatid cyst or cystic echinococcosis (CE). This study was designed to systematically review the in vitro, in vivo, and ex vivo effects of nanoparticles against hydatid cyst. The [...] Read more.
Since there is no potential, effective vaccine available, treatment is the only controlling option against hydatid cyst or cystic echinococcosis (CE). This study was designed to systematically review the in vitro, in vivo, and ex vivo effects of nanoparticles against hydatid cyst. The study was carried out based on the 06- PRISMA guideline and registered in the CAMARADES-NC3Rs Preclinical Systematic Review and Meta-analysis Facility (SyRF) database. The search was performed in five English databases, including Scopus, PubMed, Web of Science, EMBASE, and Google Scholar without time limitation for publications around the world about the protoscolicdal effects of all the organic and inorganic nanoparticles without date limitation in order to identify all the published articles (in vitro, in vivo, and ex vivo). The searched words and terms were: “nanoparticles”, “hydatid cyst”, “protoscoleces”, “cystic echinococcosis”, “metal nanoparticles”, “organic nanoparticles”, “inorganic nanoparticles, “in vitro”, ex vivo”, “in vivo”. Out of 925 papers, 29 papers including 15 in vitro (51.7%), 6 in vivo (20.7%), ex vivo 2 (6.9%), and 6 in vitro/in vivo (20.7%) up to 2020 met the inclusion criteria for discussion in this systematic review. The results demonstrated the most widely used nanoparticles in the studies were metal nanoparticles such as selenium, silver, gold, zinc, copper, iron nanoparticles (n = 8, 28.6%), and metal oxide nanoparticles such as zinc oxide, titanium dioxide, cerium oxide, zirconium dioxide, and silicon dioxide (n = 8, 28.6%), followed by polymeric nanoparticles such as chitosan and chitosan-based nanoparticles (n = 7, 25.0%). The results of this review showed the high efficacy of a wide range of organic and inorganic NPs against CE, indicating that nanoparticles could be considered as an alternative and complementary resource for CE treatment. The results demonstrated that the most widely used nanoparticles for hydatid cyst treatment were metal nanoparticles and metal oxide nanoparticles, followed by polymeric nanoparticles. We found that the most compatible drugs with nanoparticles were albendazole, followed by praziquantel and flubendazole, indicating a deeper understanding about the synergistic effects of nanoparticles and the present anti-parasitic drugs for treating hydatid cysts. The important point about using these nanoparticles is their toxicity; therefore, cytotoxicity as well as acute and chronic toxicities of these nanoparticles should be considered in particular. As a limitation, in the present study, although most of the studies have been performed in vitro, more studies are needed to confirm the effect of these nanoparticles as well as their exact mechanisms in the hydatid cyst treatment, especially in animal models and clinical settings. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Green Synthesis of Nanomaterials and Their Biological Applications)
Show Figures

Figure 1

Back to TopTop