Green synthesis of peptide functionalized reduced graphene oxide (rGO) nano bioconjugate with enhanced antibacterial activity
Bioengineered nanoconjugates have enormous potential as a multifunctional platform for biomedical applications. Conjugation between biotic and abiotic materials enables formulation of nanoconjugates with enhanced physico-chemical properties, increased stability and ability to overcome the inherent shortcomings of individual materials. In this study, we report the preparation and biophysical characterization of an antibacterial system formulated by functionalizing reduced graphene oxide (rGO) with an antimicrobial peptide via covalent as well as non-covalent interaction mechanisms. Environmentally benign synthesis approach was adopted for the formation of rGO, using L-ascorbic acid as a reducing agent. Covalently conjugated peptide-graphitic conjugate displayed improved antibacterial efficacy against Escherichia coli with considerably low cytotoxic activity towards erythrocytes in comparison to self-assembled conjugate and rGO alone. The studies described herein are highly significant in the field of biomaterials and aims to open new avenues of research focusing on a plethora of applications as a prospective non-toxic substitute to conventional antibacterial approaches.