Biosynthesis and Characterisation of Copper Nanoparticles Using Shewanella oneidensis: Application for Click Chemistry
Authors: Richard L. Kimber, Edward A. Lewis, Fabio Parmeggiani, Kurt Smith, Heath Bagshaw, Toby Starborg, Nimisha Joshi, Adriana I. Figueroa, Gerrit van der Laan, Giannantonio Cibin, Diego Gianolio, Sarah J. Haigh, Richard A. D. Pattrick, Nicholas J. Turner, Jonathan R. Lloyd
Publication Date: 23 January, 2018
Nature’s tiny nanotechnologists build new catalysts for the pharmaceutical industries
Copper nanoparticles play an important role in the chemical industries, catalysing the synthesis of a range of pharmaceutical compounds through ‘click’ chemistry’ reactions. However, there is a growing need to develop sustainable, affordable and green synthesis procedures for these important nanomaterials. To address this challenge, researchers at the University of Manchester have developed a novel, environmentally friendly biotechnological method for synthesising copper nanoparticles to drive such reactions. A specialist bacterium (Shewenalla oneidensis) was used, that usually survives in oxygen-depleted sediments by respiring (reducing) metals such as Fe(III) and Mn(IV). In this research, the bacterium was shown to transform soluble Cu(II) ions to reduced forms that precipitate as nanoscale Cu particles. The Cu nanoparticles remained attached to the bacterial cells and so can be easily recovered. These biosynthesised Cu nanoparticles were studied using a range of cutting-edge imaging and spectroscopy techniques, and then used successfully as catalysts for the archetypal click chemistry reaction, azide-alkyne cycloaddition; synthesising 1,2,3-triazoles which may form the basis of a range of new pharmaceutical compounds. This research demonstrates a novel, green method for producing copper nanoparticles, potentially from copper in wastewater streams, for use in the discovery and development of new pharmaceuticals.
- Click chemistry is a term introduced by K B Sharpless in 2001 used to describe reactions which are high-yielding, wide in scope, easy to perform, and can be can be conducted in benign solvents.
- The copper(I)-catalysed azide-alkyne cycloaddition reaction is a classic example of click chemistry, enabling efficient regioselective synthesis of triazoles under mild conditions.
- Many methods for Cu catalyst production require harsh chemicals and high temperatures. The biosynthesis of copper nanoparticle catalysts by naturally-occurring bacteria described in this work shares many of the same strict “green” criteria to those of click chemistry reactions.