Yeasts which cause hard-to-treat mouth infections are killed using silver solutions in the laboratory, scientists have found. These yeast infections, caused by Candida albicans and Candida glabrata target the young, old and immuno-compromised.
Professor Mariana Henriques, University of Minho, and her colleagues hope to test silver nanoparticles in mouthwash and dentures as a potential preventative measure against these infections.
One of the problems that exists with silver nanoparticles is it can be toxic to even beneficial bacteria that break down substances in the mouth and gut so scientists hope to create solutions for the problem.
Another potential issue researchers have expressed concerns around is the safety of nanoparticles themselves, but the authors stress this research is at an early stage and extensive safety trials will be carried out before any product reaches the market.