Nanotechnology delivers materials and nanoparticles (NPs) with high biological potential, useful in bioengineering, nanomedicine, and human health protection. Silver nanoparticles (NPs), because of their wide spectrum of activities and physical and chemical properties, are nowadays extensively researched. However, careful studies on living organism should be performed, with strong attention to biocompatibility. Multiple cellular effects, displayed after AgNP treatments, show interesting potential of metal-based NPs, not only in bio-nanotechnology but also in molecular medicine and anticancer therapy. AgNPs are promising anticancer agents, influencing the cell cycle, inhibiting cancer proliferation, and inducing oxidative stress and propagation of programmed cellular death (apoptosis). Additionally, they protect against bacterial, fungal, and viral infections. During chemo- and radio-therapies, such antimicrobial protection will be desirable because of the decreased immunological resistance of cancer patients. In conclusion, AgNPs often present in the human environment should be studied for novel findings and better characteristic. This article discusses advantages of AgNP’s “eco-friendly” production, followed by green synthesis, with particular consideration of antimicrobial and anticancer properties. Cellular processes, induced after AgNP treatments, are focused on antiproliferative, pro-oxidative, and pro-apoptotic activities of NPs.
Part of the book: Silver Nanoparticles