Imparting antimicrobial properties to natural rubber latex foam via green synthesized silver nanoparticles



The green synthesis of silver nanoparticles (AgNPs) in centrifuged natural rubber latex (NRL) by in situ reduction of silver nitrate by NRL is described. The synthesis of AgNP within NRL was successfully carried out without the addition of any reducing agent or stabilizers. The modified AgNP incorporated with centrifuged NRL (GAgNP_NRL) was used to make NRL foam (NRLF) by the Dunlop production method. An ultraviolet–visible (UV-Vis) spectrophotometer analysis, Zeta potential analysis data and transmission electron micrograph analysis proved that the modified centrifuged NRL consisted of stable nanometer-sized silver particles. A scanning electron microscopic (SEM)/energy-dispersive X-ray spectroscopy (EDX) analysis and UV-Vis analysis of a latex film made out of the modified GAgNP_NRL compound showed nano-sized silver particles inside the rubber matrix. The final product of the NRLF (GAgNP_NRLF) made out of the GAgNP_NRL compound was tested for antimicrobial properties against gram-negative Escherichia coli, gram-positive Staphylococcus aureus and Staphylococcus epidermidis. The resultant GAgNP_NRLF strongly inhibited the bacteria. © 2013 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. J. Appl. Polym. Sci. 2014, 131, 40155.