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Laccase/TEMPO-mediated bacterial cellulose functionalization: production of paper-silver nanoparticles composite with antimicrobial activity

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Bacterial cellulose (BC) was functionalized applying the Laccase/TEMPO oxidative treatment, leading to a five-fold increase of the concentration of carboxyl groups. Paper produced with this cellulose showed improved mechanical properties while maintaining barrier function against water and greases as compared to paper produced with non-oxidized BC. Also, the negative charge provided by the carboxyl groups on functionalized BC was used to generate silver nanoparticles (AgNPs), obtaining a BC paper and Ag composite. The presence of AgNPs in the composites was validated by SEM, EDS and ICP analysis, showing spherical, uniformly sized particles stabilized in the BC nanofibers matrix. Additionally, antimicrobial property of composites containing AgNPs was tested. The results showed the strong antimicrobial activity of the composites against Gram-positive and Gram-negative bacteria and fungi. The generation of Ag nanoparticles in a matrix that combine the physical characteristics of the BC nanofibers with the stiffness and the mechanical properties of paper produced composites that may have applicability in technological and biomedical uses.

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This work was financed by the Spanish Ministry of Economy, Industry and Competitiveness, Grant ref. MICROBIOCEL: CTQ2017-84966-C2-1-R and CTQ2017-84966-C2-2-R Projects, FILMBIOCEL CTQ2016-77936-R (funding also from the “Fondo Europeo de Desarrollo Regional FEDER”), by the Pla de Recerca de Catalunya, Grant 2017SGR-30, and by the Generalitat de Catalunya, “Xarxa de Referència en Biotecnologia” (XRB). Special thanks are also due to the Serra Húnter Fellow to C. Valls.

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Correspondence to Josefina Martínez.

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Morena, A.G., Roncero, M.B., Valenzuela, S.V. et al. Laccase/TEMPO-mediated bacterial cellulose functionalization: production of paper-silver nanoparticles composite with antimicrobial activity. Cellulose 26, 8655–8668 (2019).

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