Biotechnology and Bioprocess Engineering 2024; 29(1): 185-196  
Fabrication of folic acid–cysteamine‑modified silver nanoparticles as promising contrast agent for computed tomography imaging
Wei Lian1,2 · Min Gan1,2
1 Department of Radiology, The Sixth Affiliated Hospital of Nantong University, Yancheng 224001, Jiangsu, China
2 Department of Radiology, Yancheng Third People’s Hospital, Yancheng 224001, Jiangsu, China
Correspondence to: Min Gan
Received: September 20, 2023; Revised: November 8, 2023; Accepted: November 8, 2023; Published online: February 13, 2024.
© The Korean Society for Biotechnology and Bioengineering. All rights reserved.

This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution Non-Commercial License ( which permits unrestricted non-commercial use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.
The present work demonstrates the biosynthesis of silver nanoparticles (AgNPs) using Coffea arabica leaf extract. The AgNPs prepared by green route from C. arabica leaf were characterized through UV–visible, X-ray diffraction, transmission electron microscopy and energy-dispersive electron spectroscopy. Later, the prepared NPs were conjugated with cysteamine–folic acid and utilized as a contrast medium for in vitro targeted imaging of folic acid receptor-expressing malignant cells by computerized tomography (CT). At 80 kVp, the targeted cells exhibited CT values which were two times greater than that of the non-targeted cells. The results were compared with the folic acid-negative cell lines as well as the effective inhibition of folic acid receptor using free folic acid substrate. The outcome of the present study suggests that the fabricated cysteamine–folic acid-conjugated silver nanoparticles could be utilized as a potential contrast agent for molecular CT imaging. This information can be taken into consideration for applying AgNPs in enhancing radiation dose where nanoparticles containing greater X-ray attenuation were applied.
Keywords: Computed tomography imaging · Silver nanoparticles · Folic acid · Cancer cells

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