New evidence for hybrid acrylic/TiO2 films inducing bacterial inactivation under low intensity simulated sunlight
This study addresses the preparation and characterization of hybrid films prepared from Titanium dioxide (TiO2) Pickering stabilized acrylic polymeric dispersion as well as their bacterial inactivation efficiency under sunlight irradiation. Complete bacterial inactivation under low intensity simulated solar light irradiation (55 mW/cm(2)) was observed within 240 min for the films containing 10 weight based on monomers (wbm) % of TiO2, whereas 360 min were needed for the films containing 20 wbm% of TiO2, The hybrid films showed repetitive Escherichia coli (E. coli) inactivation under light irradiation. TiO2 released from the films surfaces was measured by inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometry (IPC-MS), obtaining values of similar to 0.5 and 1 ppb/cm(2) for the films containing 10 wbm% and 20 wbm% of TiO2, respectively, far below the allowed cytotoxicity level for TiO2 (200 ppb). Transmission electron microscopy (TEM) of the hybrid films showed that TiO2 nanoparticles (NPs) were located at the polymer particle's surface forming a continuous inorganic network inside the film matrix. Atomic force microscopy (AFM) images showed differences in the TiO2 dispersion between the air-film and film-substrate interfaces. Films containing 10 wbm% of TiO2 had higher roughness (Rg) at both interfaces than the one containing 20 wbm% of TiO2 inducing an increase in the bacterial adhesion as well as the bacterial inactivation kinetics. The highly oxidative OH center dot-radicals participating in the bacterial inactivation were determined by fluorescence. (C) 2015 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.