Among noble metal nanoparticles, silver nanoparticles (AgNPs) represent suitable material in various a sensors, electronics, and nanomedicine applications. Another field in which silver nanoparticles are interesting to study is nanoagriculture, which deals with the development of engineered nanomaterials for agricultural applications of various kinds [1,2]. The aim of this study is the synthesis of AgNPs functionalized with a thiol ligand, with controlled size and surface charge. This research project belongs to the activities related to TANA Regione Lazio activities and will be used in mycorrhization process, i.e., a symbiotic relationship between fungi and roots of specific plants, that improve rhizosphere formation. Specifically, hydrophilic AgNPs in the 30-50 nm size range were synthesised via green synthesis procedure, using water as solvent and stabilized during their growth with two different functionalizing agents: a hydrophilic commercially available thiol, i.e. 3-mercapto-1-propansulfonate sodium salt (AgNPs-3MPS) and an hydrophilic synthetic polymer, i.e. poly(acrylic acid) (AgNPs-PAA) in order to compare the different stabilizing effect. The formation of AgNPs was confirmed by the presence of the localized surface plasmon band centred in the 400-450 nm wavelength region, for nanostructured silver. The presence of the ligands on the AgNPs surface was confirmed by infrared spectroscopy (FT-IR) and the size and spherical morphology was established by field-emission scanning electron microscopy (FE-SEM) at solid-state. Hydrodynamic size and stability in aqueous medium were evaluated by dynamic light scattering (DLS) and UV-vis for an interval of 0-30 days in the range of 5-50 g mL-1 and 1-0.2 mg mL-1 for AgNPs-3MPS and AgNPs-PAA, respectively. The stability of the two systems was assessed, opening perspectives on their use as helper in the growth of plants mycorrhized with Tuber melanosporum (black truffle) (Figure 1).  C. An et al., Nanobiotechnology 2022, 20, 1–19.  I. Schiesaro et al., Journal of Physical Chemistry C 2020, 124, 25975−25983.
Nanotechnology in agriculture: the role of silver nanoparticles in mycorrhization process / Mercurio, Martina; Cerra, Sara; Salamone, Tommaso A.; HAJAREH HAGHIGHI, Farid; Pagliarani, Sofia; Morales-Rodriguez, Carmen; Kuzminsky, Elena; Vannini, Andrea; Fratoddi, Ilaria. - (2022). (Intervento presentato al convegno XLVIII Italian Conference of Inorganic Chemistry tenutosi a Polo Didattico San Rossore 1938).