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Tea leaves from mid hills of Nepal produce homogeneous nanoparticles

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Researchers from Kathmandu Institute of Applied Sciences, MMAMC Biratnagar and Central University of Gujarat, India have found that tea leaves from mid hills of Nepal produce homogeneous nanoparticles.

According to their research, tea leaves from mid hills of eastern Nepal produced silver nanoparticles that are homogeneous and smaller in size than tea leaves from Tarai region.

Nanoparticles are small particles that are less than 100 nm in size. Such particles possess different physical, chemical and biological properties than their bulk counterpart. Nanoparticles such as silver nanoparticles have shown a wide range of applications in cosmetics, bio-sensing, health care, textiles etc.

The study has recently been published in a peer-review journal - Chemistry Select. According to Dr. Basant Giri, who led the project and also is corresponding author of the paper, tea samples were collected from three different elevations in eastern Nepal - Jhapa, Ilam and Taplejung. While all tea leaves were able to produce silver nanoparticles using green synthesis method, samples from Ilam were better in terms of yielding similar size particles.

The plant materials contain chemicals known as phytochemicals and these chemicals play important role in the nanoparticle synthesis process determining shape and size of nanoparticles formed. Tea leaves cultivated in different places contain different types and amount of such chemicals. The new research reported the connection between tea cultivation elevation and their nanoparticle synthesis potential.

Tea is a common beverage around the globe and it is mostly cultivated in countries including Nepal, India and China. Eastern part of Nepal is popular for commercial tea gardens. Using tea leaves in nanoparticle synthesis using green methods may open new application of tea other than as beverages.

Details of the research work can be found here