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Applied Surface Science
Vol. 402, 2017, Pages: 469–477

Modulation of surface structure and catalytic properties of cerium oxide nanoparticles by thermal and microwave synthesis techniques

Jian He, Lan Zhou, Jie Liu, Lu Yang, Ling Zou, Junyu Xiang, Shiwu Dong, Xiaochao Yang

College of Pharmacy, Third Military Medical University, Chongqing 400038, China.


Cerium oxide nanoparticles (CNPs) have been intensively explored for biomedical applications in recent few years due to the versatile enzyme mimetic activities of the nanoparticles. However, the control of CNPs quality through the optimization of synthesis conditions remains largely unexplored as most of the previous studies only focus on utilizing the catalytic activities of the nanoparticles. In the present study, CNPs with size about 5 nm were synthesized by thermal decomposition method using traditional convective heating and recently developed microwave irradiation as heating source. The quality of CNPs synthesized by the two heating manner was evaluated. The CNPs synthesized by convective heating were slightly smaller than that synthesized by microwave irradiation heating. The cores of the CNPs synthesized by the two heating manner have similar crystal structure. While the surface subtle structures of the CNPs synthesized by two heating manner were different. The CNPs synthesized by microwave irradiation have more surface reactive hot spot than that synthesized by convective heating as the nanoparticles responded more actively to the redox environment variation. This difference resulted in the higher superoxide dismutase (SOD) mimetic activity of CNPs synthesized by microwave irradiation heating than that of the convective heating. Preliminary experiments indicated that the CNPs synthesized by microwave irradiation heating could better protect cells from oxidative stress due to the higher SOD mimetic activity of the nanoparticles.

Keywords: Cerium oxide nanoparticles; Convective heating; Microwave irradiation; Reactive oxygen species; Superoxide dismutase.

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