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Bioavailability of silver nanoparticles and ions: from a chemical and biochemical perspective

Type of publication Peer-reviewed
Publikationsform Review article (peer-reviewed)
Author Behra R., Sigg L., Clift M.J., Herzog F., Minghetti M., Johnston B., Petri-Fink A., Rothen-Rutishauser B.,
Project Biomedical nanoparticles as immune-modulators
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Review article (peer-reviewed)

Journal J R Soc Interface
Volume (Issue) 10
Page(s) 20130396 - 20130396
Title of proceedings J R Soc Interface


Owing to their antimicrobial properties, silver nanoparticles (NPs) are the most commonly used engineered nanomaterial for use in a wide array of consumer and medical applications. Many discussions are currently ongoing as to whether or not exposure of silver NPs to the ecosystem (i.e. plants and animals) may be conceived as harmful or not. Metallic silver, if released into the environment, can undergo chemical and biochemical conversion which strongly influence its availability towards any biological system. During this process, in the presence of moisture, silver can be oxidized resulting in the release of silver ions. To date, it is still debatable as to whether any biological impact of nanosized silver is relative to either its size, or to its ionic constitution. The aim of this review therefore is to provide a comprehensive, interdisciplinary overview--for biologists, chemists, toxicologists as well as physicists--regarding the production of silver NPs, its (as well as in their ionic form) chemical and biochemical behaviours towards/within a multitude of relative and realistic biological environments and also how such interactions may be correlated across a plethora of different biological organisms