Testing for Toxicity

Silver nanoparticle
A silver nanoparticle

Chemistry researchers at UNT have developed a test to more easily identify toxic silver ions, which can be harmful to humans and the environment at high concentrations.

Silver nanoparticles (AgNPs) are well known for their antimicrobial properties and can be found in a number of products such as bedding, toothpaste and toys. But, over time, silver ions can leach from AgNP products into the surrounding environment. The ability to differentiate between the presence of silver nanoparticles and silver ions is important in both determining the toxicity of a substance and also discovering the time it takes silver ions to leach from nanoparticles in various products -- knowledge that could have a huge impact on the environment.

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