Environmental catalysis and materials

Non-UV based germicidal activity of metal-doped TiO2 coating on solid surfaces

LIU Li-fen , John Barford , YEUNG King Lun , SI Grace


Received July 20, 2006,Revised September 15, 2006, Accepted , Available online

Volume 19,2007,Pages 745-750

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A stain-based screening method was developed to screen di erent catalyst coatings for their germicidal activity. A Baclight dead/live bacteria viability kit (invitrogen, molecular probes) was used for staining the cell. The screening was carried out following a standard procedure. This included loading cell suspension to solid surface and maintaining contact for 30 min, then staining with a mixture containing dyes. The stained cells were observed using an epifluorescent microscope and photographed with a CCD camera under UV. Metal-doped TiO2 coatings on Al plates were prepared and tested for non-UV germicidal activity without using UV. It was tested using model microorganisms such as Bakers Yeast (Saccharomyces cerevisiae), Bacillus subtilis, Pseudomonas putida, and Escherichia coli. On the basis of the germicidal activity of catalyst and the degree of damage caused to the cells, the stained cells may appear green (viable), green with red or yellow nuclei and yellow (compromised) or red (nonviable). According to their stained color, cells were counted to calculate the percentage of dead, live, and compromised cells. Compromised cells are cells that grow very slowly after reculturing indicating a degree of reversible cell damage. Screening the germicidal activity using this staining method is accurate and effcient, and requires less time than the culture-based method. A modification to the procedure for measuring germicidal activity of rough surfaces or fibrous coatings was developed. Both TiO2 and metal-doped TiO2 (Ag, Pt, Au, Cu) possess non-UV based germicidal activity. The germicidal activity of TiO2 was found to be related with its wetting property and can be improved by UV irradiation before testing. It is not greatly a ected by contact time, indicating a fast acting germicidal activity.

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