Microbial Nanotechnology: Mycofabrication of Nanoparticles and Their Novel Applications

Microbial Nanotechnology: Mycofabrication of Nanoparticles and Their Novel Applications

Vadlapudi Varahalarao (CSIR-Indian Institute of Chemical Technology, India) and B.K. Nayak (K.M. Centre for Post Graduate Studies, India)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-5225-0610-2.ch005
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Abstract

Nanoparticles synthesis using microorganisms and others as source has been unexplored and underexploited. The development of green processes for the synthesis of NP is evolving into an important branch of nanotechnology. Fungal endophytes are microorganisms that colonize living, internal tissues of plants without causing any immediate, overtly negative effects, Endophytic fungi are ubiquitous in plant species and are mutualistic to their host, recently, endophytic fungi have been recognized as important sources of a variety of structurally novel active secondary metabolites with anticancer, antimicrobial and other biological activities, Endophytic mediated synthesis of metal nanoparticles is gaining more importance owing to its simplicity, rapid rate of synthesis of NP of attractive and diverse morphologies and elimination of elaborate maintenance of cell cultures and ecofriendliness. Presently, the researchers are looking into the development of cost-effective procedures for producing reproducible, stable and biocompatible metal NPs.
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Introduction

Nanotechnology is a very important subject that is vast in making an impact in many fields of human life. Nanotechnology deals with processes that take place on the nanometer scale, that is, from approximately 1 to 100 nm. The development of green processes for the synthesis of NP is evolving into an important branch of green nanotechnology. NPs can be broadly grouped into two, namely organic nanoparticles which include carbon NPs where as some of the inorganic nanoparticles include magnetic NPs, noble metal NP (like gold and silver) and semi-conductor nanoparticles (like titanium oxide and zinc oxide). Metal nanoparticles are of use in various catalytic applications, electronics, biology and biomedical applications, material science, physics, environmental remediation fields (González & Noguezm, 1988; Gross et al., 2007; Kim et al., 2003; Parak et al., 2003; Schultz 2003; Smith et al., 2006; Wei et al., 2005; Ming-Jen Cheng et al., 2012). Materials at the nanometer dimension are not new. NPs are common in nature, for example, life depends on many nanoscaled objects, including proteins, enzymes and DNA, and nanosized particles occur naturally in the atmosphere. Natural sources of nanoparticles include fires and volcanic eruptions. Nature has been an attractive source of new therapeutic candidate compounds since a tremendous chemical diversity is found in the multitude of species of plants, animals, marine organisms and microorganisms.

Despite the decline of pharmaceutical companies’ interest in natural products and the rise in combinatorial chemistry, natural products still have an important role to play, offering an untold diversity of lead compounds.

The term, endophytes, refers to a group of microorganisms, including fungi and bacteria, which live within a plant’s internal tissues or organs, but typically causes no apparent symptoms of disease in the host plant. Fungal endophytes are microorganisms that colonize living, internal tissues of plants without causing any immediate, overtly negative effects, Endophytic fungi are ubiquitous in plant species and are mutualistic to their host; recently, endophytic fungi have been recognized as important sources of a variety of structurally novel active secondary metabolites with anticancer, antimicrobial and other biological activities, (Yanhong et al., 2012; Ming-Jen Cheng et al., 2012). The relation between endophytic microbes and develop novel nanomaterials is a relatively innovative and unexplored area and may open possibilities in the future to push the frontier forward in forthcoming years. Endophytes can produce the same or similar secondary metabolites as their host. In a green biosynthetic method, extracts from living organisms may act both as reducing and capping agents in the synthesis of nanoparticles. Some of these technologies have already been adopted. The presence of biodiversity endophytes in huge number plays an important role on ecosystems with greatest biodiversity. Scientists are looking for longer-term goals and applications like designing of ‘smart’ materials for food packaging which changes color when the ‘use by’ date of its contents expires. NT is important in developing sustainable technologies for the future, for humanity and the environment. There is a growing need to develop environmentally friendly processes through green synthesis and other biological approaches.

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