Author(s): He L, Liu Y, Mustapha A, Lin M
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Abstract Antifungal activities of zinc oxide nanoparticles (ZnO NPs) and their mode of action against two postharvest pathogenic fungi (Botrytis cinerea and Penicillium expansum) were investigated in this study. ZnO NPs with sizes of 70 ± 15 nm and concentrations of 0, 3, 6 and 12 mmol l(-1) were used. Traditional microbiological plating, scanning electron microscopy (SEM), and Raman spectroscopy were used to study antifungal activities of ZnO NPs and to characterize the changes in morphology and cellular compositions of fungal hyphae treated with ZnO NPs. Results show that ZnO NPs at concentrations greater than 3 mmol l(-1) can significantly inhibit the growth of B. cinerea and P. expansum. P. expansum was more sensitive to the treatment with ZnO NPs than B. cinerea. SEM images and Raman spectra indicate two different antifungal activities of ZnO NPs against B. cinerea and P. expansum. ZnO NPs inhibited the growth of B. cinerea by affecting cellular functions, which caused deformation in fungal hyphae. In comparison, ZnO NPs prevented the development of conidiophores and conidia of P. expansum, which eventually led to the death of fungal hyphae. These results suggest that ZnO NPs could be used as an effective fungicide in agricultural and food safety applications. Copyright © 2010 Elsevier GmbH. All rights reserved.
This article was published in Microbiol Res
and referenced in Journal of Plant Pathology & Microbiology