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Surface-Textured Mixed-Metal-Oxide Nanocrystals as Efficient Catalysts for ROS Production and Biofilm Eradication

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posted on 11.12.2020, 20:06 by Nitee Kumari, Sumit Kumar, Mamata Karmacharya, Sateesh Dubbu, Taewan Kwon, Varsha Singh, Keun Hwa Chae, Amit Kumar, Yoon-Kyoung Cho, In Su Lee
Next-generation catalysts are urgently needed to tackle the global challenge of antimicrobial resistance. Existing antimicrobials cannot function in the complex and stressful chemical conditions found in biofilms, and as a result, they are unable to infiltrate, diffuse into, and eradicate the biofilm and its associated matrix. Here, we introduce mixed-FeCo-oxide-based surface-textured nanostructures (MTex) as highly efficient magneto-catalytic platforms. These systems can produce defensive ROS over a broad pH range and can effectively diffuse into the biofilm and kill the embedded bacteria. Because the nanostructures are magnetic, biofilm debris can be scraped out of the microchannels. The key antifouling efficacy of MTex originates from the unique surface topography that resembles that of a ploughed field. These are captured as stable textured intermediates during the oxidative annealing and solid-state conversion of β-FeOOH nanocrystals. These nanoscale surfaces will advance progress toward developing a broad array of new enzyme-like properties at the nanobio interface.