A facile route to synthesize nanogels doped with silver nanoparticles

  • M. Carme Coll Ferrer
  • Robert C. FerrierJr.
  • David M. Eckmann
  • Russell J. CompostoEmail author
Brief Communication


In this study, we describe a simple method to prepare hybrid nanogels consisting of a biocompatible core–shell polymer host containing silver nanoparticles. First, the nanogels (NG, ~160 nm) containing a lysozyme rich core and a dextran rich shell, are prepared via Maillard and heat-gelation reactions. Second, silver nanoparticles (Ag NPs, ~5 nm) are synthesized “in situ” in the NG solution without requiring additional reducing agents. This approach leads to stable Ag NPs located in the NG. Furthermore, we demonstrate that the amount of Ag NPs in the NG can be tuned by varying silver precursor concentration. Hybrid nanogels with silver nanoparticles have potential in antimicrobial, optical, and therapeutic applications.


Dextran Lysozyme Nanogel Silver nanoparticles 



We acknowledge the support of NIH Grants R01 HL060230 and T32 HL007954 and NSF Grants DMR09-07493 and DMR11-20901. The authors thank M. A. Caporizzo for assistance in AFM and Dr. A.R. McGhie for helpful discussions.

Supplementary material

11051_2012_1323_MOESM1_ESM.tif (23.1 mb)
TEM micrographs of (a–c) NG-Ag5, (d–f) NG-Ag10 and (g–i) NG-Ag 25. The histograms for NG distribution are given in (g) NG-Ag5, (k) NG-Ag10 and (m) NG-Ag25 whereas the histograms for Ag NPs size distribution are given in (h) NG-Ag5, (l) NG-Ag10 and (n) NG-Ag25. The red lines are Gaussian fits. The average particle size of NG-Ag5, NG-Ag10 and NG-Ag25 are 86 ± 16, 86 ± 14 and 85 ± 20 nm whereas the average particle size of Ag NPs in NG-Ag5, NG-Ag10 and NG-Ag25 are 4.2 ± 1.2, 4.2 ± 1.1 and 4.6 ± 1.7 nm, respectively (TIFF 23631 kb)
11051_2012_1323_MOESM2_ESM.tif (7.4 mb)
TGA curves for NG-Ag2 and NG-Ag25 in air as prepared. All samples were dried at 100 °C prior to heating (TIFF 7611 kb)


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 2012

Authors and Affiliations

  • M. Carme Coll Ferrer
    • 1
    • 2
  • Robert C. FerrierJr.
    • 3
  • David M. Eckmann
    • 2
  • Russell J. Composto
    • 1
    Email author
  1. 1.Department of Materials ScienceUniversity of PennsylvaniaPhiladelphiaUSA
  2. 2.Department of Anesthesiology and Critical CareUniversity of PennsylvaniaPhiladelphiaUSA
  3. 3.Department of Chemical and Biomolecular EngineeringUniversity of PennsylvaniaPhiladelphiaUSA

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