Modern life is becoming increasingly sophisticated because of products engineered using designs inspired by nature. Fifty years ago, the burdock plant motivated Swiss scientists to invent Velcro, which was a simple but widely applied design that is still considered the greatest biomimetic invention yet. In nanotechnology, interest in biosynthesis of nanoparticles is increasing, particularly in the use of unicellular and subcellular supports. However, the polydispersity of the resultant structure, limited opportunity for product control and commercial applications of biosynthesized nanoparticles remain as challenges. Using different approaches, studies have attempted to understand nanoparticle biosynthesis and control of particle size and uniformity. In the biotechnological approach, gene sequences that were identified in one organism via gene silencing and were critical for nanoparticle synthesis were introduced and expressed in a different organism or overexpressed by promoters in the same organism to enhance productivity. In contrast, physical and chemical approaches were used for the control of nanoparticle synthesis. To provide a comprehensive understanding of nanoparticle biosynthesis using unicellular and subcellular supports, this review discusses recent studies and experimental evidence in the following categories: synthesis of metal, quantum dot, magnetic and bacterial protein nanoparticles.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes