High antibacterial activity of functionalized chemically exfoliated MoS2

Subhendu Pandit, Subbaraj Karunakaran, Sunil Kumar Boda, Bikramjit Basu, Mrinmoy De

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139 Scopus citations


In view of the implications of inherent resistance of pathogenic bacteria, especially ESKAPE pathogens toward most of the commercially available antibiotics and the importance of these bacteria-induced biofilm formation leading to chronic infection, it is important to develop new-generation synthetic materials with greater efficacy toward antibacterial property. In addressing this issue, this paper reports a proof-of-principle study to evaluate the potential of functionalized two-dimensional chemically exfoliated MoS2 (ce-MoS2) toward inhibitory and bactericidal property against two representative ESKAPE pathogenic strain - a Gram-positive Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) and a Gram-negative Pseudomonas aeruginosa. More significantly, the mechanistic study establishes a different extent of oxidative stress together with rapid membrane depolarization in contact with ce-MoS2 having ligands of varied charge and hydrophobicity. The implication of our results is discussed in the light of the lack of survivability of planktonic bacteria and biofilm destruction in vitro. A comparison with widely used small molecules and other nanomaterial-based therapeutics conclusively establishes a better efficacy of 2D ce-MoS2 as a new class of antibiotics.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)31567-31573
Number of pages7
JournalACS Applied Materials and Interfaces
Issue number46
StatePublished - Nov 23 2016
Externally publishedYes

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
We thank the Department of Science and Technology (DST, Government of India) and Council for Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR, Government of India) for their major financial support. We are grateful to the Department of Biotechnology (DBT, Government of India) for financial support to the "Centers of Excellence and Innovation in Biotechnology" scheme through the center of excellence project: "Translational Center on Biomaterials for Orthopedic and Dental Applications". S.P thanks DST for his KVPY undergraduate scholarship. S.K. and S.K.B. thank DST-INSPIRE and CSIR for doctoral fellowships.

Publisher Copyright:
© 2016 American Chemical Society.

Copyright 2017 Elsevier B.V., All rights reserved.


  • antibiotics
  • ce-MoS
  • ESKAPE pathogens
  • membrane depolarization
  • nanomaterials
  • oxidative stress
  • surface functionalization


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