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Journal of Nanomaterials
Volume 2016, Article ID 4712813, 9 pages
Research Article

Characterization of Alginate/Silver Nanobiocomposites Synthesized by Solution Plasma Process and Their Antimicrobial Properties

1Division of Life Sciences, Incheon National University, Incheon 406-772, Republic of Korea
2Division of Bioengineering, Incheon National University, Incheon 406-772, Republic of Korea

Received 14 September 2015; Revised 25 January 2016; Accepted 27 January 2016

Academic Editor: Lavinia Balan

Copyright © 2016 Sangwoo Nam et al. 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.


Solution plasma process (SPP) was adopted to prepare alginate/silver nanoparticle (AL/AgNP) biocomposites. The biocomposites were synthesized in solutions of varying concentrations of AgNO3 (1−5 mM) and alginate (0.1−0.3%, w/w) by discharging plasma for 7 min at 800 V with 30 kHz frequency using a pulsed unipolar power supply. The AL/AgNP emulsion was fabricated into 3D scaffolds by freeze drying and lyophilization and then stabilized by cross-linking via UV irradiation. UV-Vis spectroscopy of the biocomposites showed a characteristic absorbance at the maximum of 415–440 nm with increase in the intensity of the peaks as the concentration of AgNO3 increased. FE-SEM analysis showed that the 3D scaffolds had microporous structures with fine and uniform pores of 3–9 ± 2.0 μm in diameter. TEM analysis revealed that AgNPs in the biocomposites were in spherical shape with size range of 5– nm (AL0.3/Ag5) and well distributed in the matrix. The AL/AgNP biocomposites showed microbicidal activity against 9 human pathogens with MIC of 9.6–21 μg/mL for bacteria and 85–425 μg/mL for fungi. Almost all of the E. coli cells (99.8%) were killed by the treatment with 42.5 μg/mL of AgNPs at room temperature for 1 h.