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Posted: Sep 18, 2013

Nanotechnology in plant disease management

(Nanowerk News) Nanotechnology has been found to be highly useful in medical diagnostics, drug delivery, tissue engineering, etc. In new work reported in ACS Nano ("Nanotechnology in Plant Disease Management: DNA-Directed Silver Nanoparticles on Graphene Oxide as an Antibacterial against Xanthomonas perforans"), researchers have demonstrated that it also has a place in plant biology. Researchers from the University of Florida and Hunan University, developed DNA-directed silver (Ag) nanoparticles (NPs) grown on graphene oxide (GO). These Ag@dsDNA@GO composites effectively decrease X. perforans cell viability in culture and on plants.
DNA-directed silver nanoparticles grown on graphene oxide
DNA-directed silver (Ag) nanoparticles (NPs) grown on graphene oxide (GO). These Ag@dsDNA@GO composites effectively decrease X. perforans cell viability in culture and on plants. (© ACS)
The antibacterial activity of Ag@dsDNA@GO composites toward X. perforans, a model plant pathogenic bacterium, is enhanced by the synergistic effect between silver nanoparticles (AgNPs) and graphene oxide (GO).
The researchers observed optimal antibacterial activity with 20 ppm Ag (18 nm)@dsDNA@GO and 16 ppm Ag (5 nm)@dsDNA@GO composites in vitro after an incubation of only 60 min. The Ag@dsDNA@GO displayed higher antibacterial behavior compared to the Ag@GO composite synthesized by different methods, bare AgNPs solution or bare GO solution.
Ag@dsDNA@GO at 100 ppm was applied on tomato transplants in a greenhouse experiment, and significant reduction of disease caused by bacterial spot was visually observed compared to the untreated control and the control treated with copper + mancozeb (the current grower standard treatment).
Application of Ag@dsDNA@GO did not induce any phytotoxic effect on plant leaves. The scientists say that their preliminary results clearly show the great potential in using easily realized nanotechnology for existing severe problems in plants.
Source: American Chemical Society
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