Palladium nanoparticles (Pd NPs) have a wide range of applications in for example catalysis, sensors, fuel cells and nanomedicine. The functionality of such particles can be enhanced by modifying their size and shape or by combinations with different metals. Researchers at the University of Oslo have developed a toolbox to generate different Pd NPs using biotechnological modifications of bacteria. These NPs can likely be produced in a more eco-friendly manner than current approaches can, and parameters as size, composition and shape can be controlled to tailor their properties. For this project we are interested in industrial co-development collaborations.
Metal NP production in bacteria is regulated by different pathways including e.g. metal transporters. Using Palladium as a model system we have identified individual genes that impact Pd uptake into cells, and the reduction of the metal. We are genetically engineering these genes to fine-tune the NPs size and shape which have direct effect on catalytic properties and that can also result in unique magnetic properties.
Current proof of concept is from Pd. We intend to expand this to both other metals and mixed-metals. The engineered bacterial strains to produce metal NPs of different sizes and shapes, can therefore be tailored to create new materials for a variety of applications, including chemical catalysis, electronics, and medical applications.
- Campana, A. L. et al. (2021) ‘Magnetic Decoration of Escherichia coli Loaded with Palladium Nanoparticles’, 2021 IEEE 10th International Conference on “Nanomaterials: Applications & Properties” (NAP – 2021), pp. 1–5. doi: 10.1109/NAP51885.2021.9568523.
- Joudeh, N. et al. (2021) ‘Transcriptomic Response Analysis of Escherichia coli to Palladium Stress’, Frontiers in Microbiology, 12, p. 2840. doi: 10.3389/fmicb.2021.741836.
The technology involves valuable know-how that is currently kept secret. Inventive aspects will be subject of a patent application filing when timely.