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Effect of Silver Nanoparticle Coatings on Mycobacterial Biofilm Attachment and Growth: Implications for Ceramic Water Filters

Larimer, Curtis (2013) Effect of Silver Nanoparticle Coatings on Mycobacterial Biofilm Attachment and Growth: Implications for Ceramic Water Filters. Doctoral Dissertation, University of Pittsburgh. (Unpublished)

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Silver is a natural, broad-spectrum antibacterial metal and its toxicity can be enhanced when surface area is maximized. As a result, silver nanoparticles (AgNP) have been investigated for use in novel water treatment technologies. The hypothesis of this work is that deposited AgNPs can enhance water treatment technologies by inhibiting growth of planktonic bacteria and biofilms. This was investigated by evaluating the antibacterial efficacy of AgNPs both in solution and as deposited on surfaces. AgNPs were found to be toxic to three species of environmental mycobacteria, M. smegmatis, M. avium, and M. marinum and the level of susceptibility varied widely, probably owing to the varying levels of silver that each species is exposed to in its natural environment. When cultured in a AgNP enriched environment M. smegmatis developed resistance to the toxic effects of both the nanoparticles and silver ions. The resistant mutant was as viable as the unmodified strain and was also resistant to antibiotic isoniazid. However, the strain was more susceptible to other toxic metal ions from ZnSO4 and CuSO4.
AgNPs were deposited on silicon wafer substrates by vertical colloidal deposition (VCD). Manipulating deposition speed and also concentration of AgNPs in the depositing liquid led to a range of AgNP coatings with distinctive deposition lines perpendicular to the motion of the meniscus. Experimental results for areal coverage, which was measured from SEM images of AgNP coatings, were compared to Diao’s theory of VCD but did not show agreement due to a stick-slip mechanism that is not accounted for by the theory. Durability of AgNP coatings is critical for antibacterial efficacy and to mitigate the risks of exposing the environment to nanomaterials and it was measured by exposing AgNP coatings to liquid flow in a flow cell. Durability was improved by modifying processing to include a heat treatment after deposition.
Finally, the antibiofilm efficacy of deposited AgNPs was demonstrated by culturing M. smegmatis on porous membrane filters and Si substrates that were coated with AgNP. In both cases AgNP inhibited biofilm growth with an effect that was concentration or areal coverage dependent.


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Item Type: University of Pittsburgh ETD
Status: Unpublished
CreatorsEmailPitt UsernameORCID
ETD Committee:
TitleMemberEmail AddressPitt UsernameORCID
Thesis AdvisorNettleship, IanNettles@pitt.eduNETTLES
Committee MemberBarnard, Johnjbarnard@pitt.eduJBARNARD
Committee MemberWang, Qing-Mingqiw4@pitt.eduQIW4
Committee MemberLee, Jung-Kunjul37@pitt.eduJUL37
Committee MemberYang, Judithjudyyang@pitt.eduJUDYYANG
Date: 25 September 2013
Date Type: Publication
Defense Date: 19 July 2013
Approval Date: 25 September 2013
Submission Date: 22 July 2013
Access Restriction: No restriction; Release the ETD for access worldwide immediately.
Number of Pages: 190
Institution: University of Pittsburgh
Schools and Programs: Swanson School of Engineering > Materials Science and Engineering
Degree: PhD - Doctor of Philosophy
Thesis Type: Doctoral Dissertation
Refereed: Yes
Uncontrolled Keywords: silver nanoparticle, biofilm, coating, antibacterial, nanomaterial, water treatment
Date Deposited: 25 Sep 2013 15:31
Last Modified: 15 Nov 2016 14:14


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