Nanotechnology offers powerful new approaches to controlling unwanted microorganisms and other potential biohazards. Engineered nanoparticles with antifungal, antimicrobial, and antiviral properties are now being developed for a variety of applications, including manufacture and maintenance of sterile surfaces, prevention and control of biological contamination, food and water safety, and treatment of infectious diseases and cancer. The great potential of antimicrobial precious-metal nanoparticles is reflected by the high number of recent publications and patent applications, which is summarized, at least in part, in this paper. This review should provide an overview and offer guidance to the scientific community interested in nano(bio)technology, nanomedicine, and nanotoxicology, and may also be of interest to a broader scientific audience. Furthermore, this review covers specific topics in research and development addressing the effects of nanoparticles on microorganisms as well as novel nanotechnology-based approaches for controlling potentially pathogenic microorganisms.
Keywords: Antifouling, biofouling, biocidal nanoparticles, coating, growth inhibition, gold, microorganisms, surface, silver, Ag, Au, VRE, MRSA, stabilizers, photochemical, Nanoparticle Susceptibility , nanoparticle re-aggregation.