More efficient capture of bacteria on nanostructured materials

Thomas J. Webster, Jin X. Liu, Margaret Katherine Banks

Research output: Contribution to journalConference articlepeer-review


Nanobiotechnology is a growing area of research, primarily due to the potentially numerous applications of new synthetic nanomaterials in engineering/science. Although various definitions have been given to the word "nanomaterials" by many different experts, the commonly accepted one refers nanomaterials as those materials which possess grains, particles, fibers, or other constituent components that have one dimension specifically less than 100 nm. In biological applications, most of the research to date has focused on the interactions between mammalian cells and synthetic nanophase surfaces for the creation of better tissue engineering materials. Although mammalian cells have shown a definite positive response to nanophase materials, the evidence for bacteria interactions with nanophase materials remains for the most part a mystery. For this reason, this study determined the capture of a model bacteria (Pseudomonas fluorescens) on nanophase compared to conventional grain size alumina. Results provided the first evidence of increased capture of Pseudomonas fluorescens on alumina with nanometer compared to conventional grain sizes. Although not measured at the atomic scale, similar chemistry, crystallinity, crystal phase, and porosity was observed between nanophase and conventional alumina. For this reason, a major material property difference between nanophase and conventional alumina was reduced grain size (and perhaps associated changes in charge density) which led to increased bacteria capture and the design of better environmental filters.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article numberAA5.17
Pages (from-to)273-278
Number of pages6
JournalMaterials Research Society Symposium Proceedings
StatePublished - 2005
EventNanoscale Materials Science in Biology and Medicine - Boston, MA, United States
Duration: Nov 28 2004Dec 2 2004

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Materials Science(all)
  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Mechanics of Materials
  • Mechanical Engineering


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