Although the information above is not widely disseminated, the common practice of sharing nail polish in beauty salons can cause damage to health. With that in mind, professor and researcher Dr. Patrícia Severino (ITP / UNIT) developed a solution using nanotechnology together with research partners. The innovation consisted in the development of silver nanoparticles coated with humic acid to be used as a raw material for enamels in order to preserve the cosmetic and avoid contamination when shared while being efficient for the prevention / treatment of onychomycosis.

The biocidal activity of silver nanoparticles is known, however, silver nanoparticles have specified properties that depend on size, shape and morphology. For incorporation into the enamel, the nanoparticles were coated with a layer of humic acid, providing the production of a nanoactant acting only on the microorganism and rendering it inert to the organism.

Humic acid was chosen because it has anti-inflammatory, antiviral, antioxidant, fungicidal and bactericidal activity, being of great interest to the pharmaceutical and cosmetic industry. It also points out that this substance is widely available in Sergipe, it is easy to purchase and it has low cost, which makes it very attractive from the environmental point of view. Humic acid was used as a decoy for fungi, and from that we were able to take the nanoactive along with the fungus and with that the combined action of humic acid and silver were efficient in killing even resistant fungi, making the enamel characterized as a functional cosmetic.

The nanoparticles isolated and incorporated in several types of enamels have undergone stability tests recommended by the National Health Surveillance Agency (ANVISA), cellular tests using human fibroblasts and antifungal activity in standard strains and resistant to conventional therapy. The nanoparticles maintained the stability of the enamels evaluated, showed no cytotoxicity and were efficient for inhibiting all the evaluated strains. In this sense, the use of the nanoactive has shown to be promising for enamel conservation, potential for the treatment of onychomycosis and facilitating the patient’s adherence to the treatment. After 2 years of research, the nanoactive obtained was used in the most diverse types of enamel, maintaining the color, brightness and durability and, I emphasize that in all the evaluated cases the drying time decreased compared to the conventional formulation, being of great interest for users. Thus, the next step is to finalize clinical trials, file a patent and publish scientific articles.


This project was attended by professors and researchers Dr. Cleide Soares (ITP / UNIT), Dr. André dos Santos (UFRJ), Dr. Maria Helena A. Santana (FEQ / Unicamp), Dr. Álvaro Silva (ITP / UNIT) ) and the beautician student Ketheleen Medeiros (ITP / UNIT) and is part of the Program to Stimulate Mobility and Increase Academic Cooperation (PROMOB) with funding from the Coordination for the Improvement of Higher Education Personnel (CAPES) and the Foundation for Support to Research and Technological Innovation of the State of Sergipe (FAPITEC / SE).