Selenium nanoparticles from Lactobacillus paracasei HM1 capable of antagonizing animal pathogenic fungi as a new source from human breast milk

Mohamed T. El-Saadony, Ahmed M. Saad, Taha F. Taha, Azhar A. Najjar, Nidal M. Zabermawi, Maha M. Nader, Synan F. AbuQamar, Khaled A. El-Tarabily, Ali Salama

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

84 Citations (Scopus)


The current study was performed to develop a simple, safe, and cost-effective technique for the biosynthesis of selenium nanoparticles (SeNPs) from lactic acid bacteria (LAB) isolated from human breast milk with antifungal activity against animal pathogenic fungi. The LAB was selected based on their speed of transforming sodium selenite (Na2SeO3) to SeNPs. Out of the four identified LAB isolates, only one strain produced dark red color within 32 h of incubation, indicating that this isolate was the fastest in transforming Na2SeO3 to SeNPs; and was chosen for the biosynthesis of LAB-SeNPs. The superior isolate was further identified as Lactobacillus paracasei HM1 (MW390875) based on matrix-assisted laser desorption ionization-time of flight mass spectrometry (MALDI-TOF MS) and phylogenetic tree analysis of 16S rRNA sequence alignments. The optimum experimental conditions for the biosynthesis of SeNPs by L. paracasei HM1 were found to be pH (6.0), temperature (35˚C), Na2SeO3 (4.0 mM), reaction time (32 h), and agitation speed (160 rpm). The ultraviolet absorbance of L. paracasei-SeNPs was detected at 300 nm, and the transmission electron microscopy (TEM) captured a diameter range between 3.0 and 50.0 nm. The energy-dispersive X-ray spectroscopy (EDX) and the Fourier-transform infrared spectroscopy (FTIR) provided a clear image of the active groups associated with the stability of L. paracasei-SeNPs. The size of L. paracasei-SeNPs using dynamic light scattering technique was 56.91 ± 1.8 nm, and zeta potential value was −20.1 ± 0.6 mV in one peak. The data also revealed that L. paracasei-SeNPs effectively inhibited the growth of Candida and Fusarium species, and this was further confirmed by scanning electron microscopy (SEM). The current study concluded that the SeNPs obtained from L. paracasei HM1 could be used to prepare biological antifungal formulations effective against major animal pathogenic fungi. The antifungal activity of the biologically synthesized SeNPs using L. paracasei HM1 outperforms the chemically produced SeNPs. In vivo studies showing the antagonistic effect of SeNPs on pathogenic fungi are underway to demonstrate the potential of a therapeutic agent to treat animals against major infectious fungal diseases.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)6782-6794
Number of pages13
JournalSaudi Journal of Biological Sciences
Issue number12
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2021


  • Animals' pathogenic fungi
  • Antifungal metabolites
  • Biosynthesis
  • Lactobacillus paracasei
  • Selenium nanoparticles

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Agricultural and Biological Sciences


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