Insciences J. 2011, 1(1), 65-79;doi:10.5640/insc.010165
Full Research Paper (Invited Paper), Section: Nanotechnology
Biosynthesis of Silver Nanoparticles by Fungus Trichoderma Reesei (A Route for Large-Scale Production of AgNPs)
1 Department of BioEngineering, University of Illinois at Chicago, Chicago, IL 60607-7052 USA
* Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Published: March 28, 2011
One of the requirements for advancement of nanotechnology are the development of reliable experimental protocols for the synthesis of nanomaterials over a range of biological compositions, sizes and high monodispersity. An attractive possibility of green nanotechnology is to use micro-organisms in the synthesis of nanoparticles. Recently, the utilization of biological systems, especially fungi, has emerged as a novel method for the synthesis of nanoparticles. Nanoparticles are considered as fundamental molecular building blocks for nanotechnology. They are the starting points for preparing many nanostructured materials and devices. In this paper we report the extracellular biosynthesis of silver nanoparticles (AgNPs) by using a fungus named Trichoderma Reesei (also known as Hypocrea jecorina). In the biosynthesis of AgNPs by this fungus, the fungus mycelium is exposed to the silver nitrate solution. That prompts the fungus to produce enzymes and metabolites for its own survival. In this process the toxic Ag+ ions are reduced to the nonetoxic metallic AgNPs through the catalytic effect of the extracellular enzyme and metabolites of the fungus. Absorption UV-Visible light spectroscopy is used to follow up with the reaction process. Fluorescence emission spectroscopy is used to produce detailed information on the progress of reduction of silver nitrate (formation of silver nanoparticles) on the nanosecond timescale. Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy is used for quantitative analyses of the reaction products. Our measurements indicate that extracellular biosynthesis of AgNPs by Trichoderma reesei produces AgNPs with the diameters in the range of 5-50 nm. Trichoderma Reesei is an environmentally friendly fungus, and it is well known for its formation of extracellular enzyme and metabolites in very large amounts, much higher than other fungi. The present process is an excellent candidate for industrial scale production of silver nanoparticles.