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Preparation and characterization of casein-stabilized gold nanoparticles for catalytic applications

Liu, Yan, Liu, Lili, Yuan, Min, Guo, Rong
Colloids and Surfaces A: Physicochemical and Engineering Aspects 2013 v.417 pp. 18-25
Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy, X-ray diffraction, aminophenols, casein, catalysts, catalytic activity, chemical reduction, colloids, hydrophilicity, micelles, nanogold, nanoparticles, p-nitrophenol, pH, protein aggregates, transmission electron microscopy
Casein micelle stabilized sub-10nm gold nanoparticles (GNPs) which are hydrophilic and biocompatible, were synthesized in aqueous medium by chemical reduction of HAuCl4 in the presence of amphiphilic protein aggregates, casein micelles. The prepared GNPs were evidenced by UV–vis spectroscopy, TEM, FTIR, and XRD analysis. The size of the GNPs can be controlled easily by adjusting casein concentration and the environment pH in the system. Furthermore, casein micelle stabilized GNPs function as effective catalyst to activate the reduction of 4-nitrophenol (to form 4-aminophenol) in the presence of NaBH4. The catalytic activity of GNPs depends upon the nanoparticle size, the casein concentration and the pH used for synthesis. On the basis of their excellent colloidal stability and catalytic function, and biocompatible surface, the casein micelle-stabilized GNPs hold great promise for being used in nanoscience and biomedical applications.