Nettle-Leaf Extract Derived ZnO/CuO Nanoparticle-Biopolymer-Based Antioxidant and Antimicrobial Nanocomposite Packaging Films and Their Impact on Extending the Post-Harvest Shelf Life of Guava Fruit.Biomolecules. 2021 02 05; 11(2)B
Green synthesized metal oxide nanoparticles (NPs) have prominent applications in antimicrobial packaging systems. Here we have attempted for the fabrication of chitosan-based nanocomposite film containing Urtica dioica leaf extract derived copper oxide (CuO) and zinc oxide (ZnO) NPs for shelf-life extension of the packaged guava fruits. Electron microscopy and spectroscopy analysis of the CuO and ZnO NPs exhibited nano-scale size, spherical morphologies, and negative ζ-potential values. The NPs possessed appreciable antioxidant and antimicrobial activity (AMA) in order of CuO NPs > ZnO NPs >nettle extract. Therefore, this work establishes for the first time the successful synthesis of CuO NPs and compares its antimicrobial and antioxidant properties with ZnO NPs. On incorporation in chitosan, the polymer nanocomposite films were developed by solvent casting technique. The developed films were transparent, had low antioxidant but substantial AMA. The NP supplementation improved the film characteristics as evident from the decrease in moisture content, water holding capacity, and solubility of the films. The nanocomposite films improved the quality attributes and shelf life of guava fruits by one week on packaging and storage compared to unpackaged control fruits. Therefore, this study demonstrates the higher antimicrobial potential of the nettle leaf extract derived CuO/ZnO NPs for development of antimicrobial nanocomposite films as a promising packaging solution for enhancing the shelf life of various perishable fruits.