Nanosilver products and toxicity

Abstract

Nanotechnology focuses on materials in which at least one dimension is lower than 100 nm. Those materials have unique properties because their structures have high surface to mass ratios. For instance, silver nanoparticles are increasingly added to everyday products because silver nanoparticles have a high biocidal effect against bacteria, viruses and fungi. Here, we review products enriched in silver nanoparticles and the fate of nanoparticles in the environment. Silver nanoparticles can be absorbed by plant and animal tissues and thus penetrate into the food chain. Despite a paucity of studies of their toxicity to the human body, literature reports show the negative effects of nanoparticles on animals. Products such as hygiene preparations, dental implants, toothpastes and textiles may release silver nanoparticles in the environment. Rainwater washes silver nanoparticles out of building materials such as paint, siding and roofing. Silver nanoparticles may then accumulate in the soil. Silver nanoparticles that are added to air conditioners and air filters may penetrate the atmosphere then be inhaled by living organisms.

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Correspondence to Jolanta Pulit-Prociak.

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Pulit-Prociak, J., Stokłosa, K. & Banach, M. Nanosilver products and toxicity. Environ Chem Lett 13, 59–68 (2015). https://doi.org/10.1007/s10311-014-0490-2

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Keywords

  • Silver Nanoparticles
  • Polyurethane Foam
  • Chlamydia Trachomatis
  • Dental Implant
  • Silver Concentration