The development of materials that can more efficiently administer antimicrobial agents in a controlled manner is urgently needed due to the rise in microbial resistance to traditional antibiotics. While new classes of antibiotics are developed and put into widespread usage, existing, inexpensive compounds can be repurposed to fight bacterial infections. Here, we present the synthesis of amine-functionalized SBA-15 mesoporous silica nanomaterials with physisorbed rafoxanide (RFX), a commonly used salicylanilide anthelmintic, and anchored Cu(II) ions that exhibit enhanced antimicrobial efficacy against the pathogenic bacterium Staphylococcus aureus. The synthesized nanomaterials are structurally characterized by a combination of physicochemical, thermal, and optical methods. Additionally, release studies are carried out in vitro to determine the effects of pH and the synthetic sequence used to produce the materials on Cu(II) ion release. Our results indicate that SBA-15 mesoporous silica nanocarriers loaded with Cu(II) and RFX exhibit 10 times as much bactericidal action against wild-type S. aureus as the nanocarrier loaded with only RFX. Furthermore, the synthetic sequence used to produce the nanomaterials could significantly affect (enhance) their bactericidal efficacy.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- General Materials Science
- SBA-15 nanomaterials
- Staphylococcus aureus