Graphene for the destruction of drug-resistant bacteria


Graphene shell helps particles destroy drug-resistant bacteria in wastewater treated in dedicated facilities

[תרגום מאת ד”ר משה נחמני]

Graphene for the destruction of drug-resistant bacteria. From Scientific Research, Rice University

The new approach was developed by scientists from Rice University in the Department of Environmental Engineering, who demonstrated the use of microspheres wrapped in graphene oxide in an article published in the scientific journal Water Research.

Researchers have been working for several years in the field of super-bacteria known to be able to survive in wastewater in wastewater treatment facilities while emitting extracellular genes for antibiotic resistance (ARGs) when they are decomposed during sewage disinfection. In the next stage, these genes are released into the environment and may make ordinary bacteria resistant to antibiotics. The lead researcher explains: “Our invention will reduce the emission of such genes to the environment and thus reduce the rate of antibiotic-resistant bacteria derived from wastewater.”

The researchers showed that their globules – consisting of a bismuth core, oxygen and carbon wrapped in graphene oxide containing nitrogen atoms – disable the resistance of the bacterium Escherichia coli to a number of drugs and gene breakdowns that promote such resistance in secondary wastewater. By producing three times the amount of reactive oxygen species (ROS) compared to pellets alone. The pellets themselves are photo-catalysts that produce active oxygen forms in exposure to light. Laboratory experiments have shown that the pellets reduce the ability of the form traps to reduce their ability. Disinfect the solution The researchers explain that adding nitrogen atoms to the graphene envelope increases the ability of the pellets to trap the bacterium, allowing the catalytic pellets to destroy the bacteria for a longer time.Next, the improved pellets immediately capture and break down the bacteria that cause bacterial resistance to The wastewater.

“The wrapper improves the bacteria’s affinity for the microspheres through increased hydrophobic interactions between the surface of the bacterium and the shell,” the researcher explains. Because the wrapped pellets are large enough to be filtered out of the disinfected stream, they can be used over and over again. Tests showed that the photocatalytic activity of the globules was relatively stable, with no significant decline in activity even after ten cycles.

Abstract of the scientific article

The knowledge of the study


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