Determination of silver nanoparticle release from antibacterial fabrics into artificial sweat
Silver nanoparticles have been used in numerous commercial products, including textiles, to prevent bacterial growth. Meanwhile, there is increasing concern that exposure to these nanoparticles may cause potential adverse effects on humans as well as the environment.
This study determined the quantity of silver released from commercially claimed nanosilver and laboratory-prepared silver coated fabrics into various formulations of artificial sweat, each made according to AATCC, ISO and EN standards. For each fabric sample, the initial amount of silver and the antibacterial properties against the model Gram-positive (S.
aureus) and Gram-negative (E. coli) bacteria on each fabric was investigated.
The results showed that silver was not detected in some commercial fabrics. Furthermore, antibacterial properties of the fabrics varied, ranging from 0% to greater than 99%.
After incubation of the fabrics in artificial sweat, silver was released from the different fabrics to varying extents, ranging from 0 mg/kg to about 322 mg/kg of fabric weight. The quantity of silver released from the different fabrics was likely to be dependent on the amount of silver coating, the fabric quality and the artificial sweat formulations including its pH.
This study is the unprecedented report on the release of silver nanoparticles from antibacterial fabrics into artificial sweat. This information might be useful to evaluate the potential human risk associated with the use of textiles containing silver nanoparticles.
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