Research Highlight

Nano shield for bacterial infections

doi:10.1038/nindia.2013.75 Published online 31 May 2013

A promising new nanocomposite could well become the next generation shield against bacterial infections. Researchers have found that the nanocomposite, made out of cadmium-tellurium and titanium dioxide (CdTe–TiO2), effectively inhibits bacterial growth and also does not allow the pathogens to hide behind nasty, protective biofilms1.

There have been reports of creation of bacteria-resistant surfaces to inhibit the growth of biofilms in the past but only a few researchers have used nanoparticles as antibiofilm agents.

Working on the common infection-causing bacteria Pseudomonas aeruginosa, the researchers studied the antibacterial action of the nanocomposite in two ways. They determined the minimum inhibitory concentration (MIC) by a dye reduction method and the minimum bactericidal concentration (MBC) by counting the number of viable organisms as colony forming units per milliliter.

They found the nanocomposite to be a promising candidate for the photocatalytic destruction of bacterial cells. They also detected a decrease in the formation of biofilms by the microbe in the presence of CdTe–TiO2.

The researchers suggest that the enhanced antibacterial property of CdTe–TiO2 is due to the light-induced production of greater quantities of reactive oxygen species. Also, the biofilm-inhibiting property makes it a favorable material to tackle other clinically pathogenic bacteria, they say.


  1. Gholap, H. et al. CdTe–TiO2 nanocomposite: an impeder of bacterial growth and biofilm. Nanotechnology. (2013) doi: 10.1088/0957-4484/24/19/195101