The development of new and simple green chemical methods for synthesizing colloidal solutions of functional nanoparticles is desirable for environment-friendly applications. In the present work, we report a feasible method for synthesizing colloidal solutions of silver nanoparticles (Ag NPs) based on the modified Tollens technique. The Ag NPs were stabilized by using oleic acid as a surfactant and were produced for the first time by the reduction of silver ammonium complex [Ag(NH3)2]+(aq)by glucose with UV irradiation treatment. A stable and nearly monodisperse aqueous Ag NPs solution with average-sized particles (~ 9-10 nm) was obtained. The Ag NPs exhibited high antibacterial activity against both Gram-negative Escherichia Coli (E. coli) and Gram-positive Staphylococcus aureus bacteria. Electron microscopic images and analyses provided further insights into the interaction and bactericidal mechanism of the Ag NPs. The proposed method of synthesis is an effective way to produce highly bactericidal colloidal solutions for medical, microbiological, and industrial applications. © 2010 Elsevier B.V.
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