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Female PhD pursues her passion in nano silver research

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Visitors to TechDemo 2017, an important event of sci-tech firms held in Da Nang City in late 2017, were invited to try a special mouthwash made of nano silver.

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Dr Tran Thi Ngoc Dung


Dr Tran Thi Ngoc Dung, the creator of the product, said it was just one of many products using nano materials. The others include bandages and compresses for slowly healing wounds, filter kits for home-use water purification, diapers for children and adults, and environmental protection masks.

Dung is head of the Environment Friendly Technology division of the Institute of Environmental Technology, an arm of the Vietnam Academy of Science & Technology.

Dung said silver was used by people centuries ago to treat diseases because it can destroy 260 kinds of bacteria. Silver was used to heal nasopharyngitis, burns, and umbilical cord infections. Ancients also used silver to treat chills. 

Today, with the development of science and technology, many countries have developed products from silver nano for health care.

Vietnam is also doing this, but it is very costly and complicated.

In 2006, Dung and her co-workers, implementing research under a protocol signed between Vietnam and Russia, used the Reverse Michelle method which creates silver nanoparticles of a high quality. 

However, they found that the method doesn’t fit Vietnamese conditions because the process must undergo many complicated phases, taking a lot of time and requiring expensive substances. 

Dung vowed to find a Vietnamese method to prepare silver nano. She uses an aqueous solution to dissolve silver salts and dispersing agents to produce silver particles. 

The silver particles she produces are small and uniform, not deposited, and are very similar to silver nanomaterials. The particles are less than 100 nanometers in size, meeting requirements to be recognized as nanomaterials.

The biggest advantage of the preparation method is that the production cost 30 times lower than the older method, thus allowing large-scale production and use of silver nano.

Dung and her co-workers have been working on products that can be used in daily life. Diapers, filtration units, protection masks and medical bandages with nano silver have appeared on the market.

Dung began thinking of creating a kind of bandage with nano silver after she heard that a child with congenital heart defects died after a successful operation because of an infection in an incision.

The institute’s science council has recognized Dung’s bandages as able to treat ulcers, kill antibiotic-resistant bacteria, and heal wounds quickly.



Source: VietNamNet

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