Innovations in Antimicrobial Engineered Nanomaterials

  • Marcela P. Bernardo
  • Francys K. V. Moreira
  • Luiz H. C. Mattoso
  • Sebastian Raja
Part of the Environmental Chemistry for a Sustainable World book series (ECSW, volume 25)


The threat caused by drug-resistant pathogens represents a great concern to several economic sectors. This issue has intensified the development of more efficient antimicrobial products that could be safe not only for medical, pharmaceutical, water disinfection and food applications but also for reduced environmental impact. Nanotechnology now emerges as a powerful tool for scientists and engineers to develop engineered nanomaterials with remarkable antimicrobial activity. The potential of engineered nanomaterials is now certain to benefit different areas, such as medicine, food, pharmaceutical, and agriculture, once higher antimicrobial effectiveness implies in reduced content of antimicrobial compounds, thereby reducing cytotoxicity effects as well as environmental impact to different forms of life. This chapter summarizes the most recent achievements on antimicrobial engineered nanomaterials intended for better medicine, cosmetics, environmental, and food applications with emphasis on (i) new silver-based hybrid nanomaterials, (ii) new bioinspired antimicrobial nanoparticles, (iii) new antimicrobial nanostructures derived from layered minerals, (iv) recent developments on antimicrobial polymer nanocomposites, and finally (v) some recent trends in nanotechnological antimicrobial products available at the European market. The remarkable importance of antimicrobial engineered nanomaterials emerges from the combination of different nanomaterials so that main advantages of each are built together into new, revolutionary systems capable of solving the pathogen infection issue.


Pathogen infestation Biocidal effect Antimicrobial agent Nanomaterials Nanosilver Carbon nanotubes Layered double hydroxides Polymer nanocomposites Antibacterial consumer goods Nanoscience 



Authors thank Embrapa, DEMa/UFSCar, FAPESP, CNPq, FAPESP (Proc. No. 2015/00094-0; Proc. No. 2017/22017-3), MCTI/SISNANO, and REDEAGRONANO for the financial support.


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© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Marcela P. Bernardo
    • 1
    • 3
  • Francys K. V. Moreira
    • 2
    • 3
  • Luiz H. C. Mattoso
    • 3
  • Sebastian Raja
    • 3
  1. 1.Department of ChemistryFederal University of São CarlosSão CarlosBrazil
  2. 2.Department of Materials Engineering – DEMaFederal University of São Carlos – UFSCarSão CarlosBrazil
  3. 3.National Nanotechnology Laboratory for AgribusinessEmbrapa InstrumentaçãoSão CarlosBrazil

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