Synthesis and Characterization of Iron Oxide via Chemical Leaching from Bioinspired Termite Mound for Biomedical Application

Chetu, Thomas (2021-03-15)


Nanomedicine has gained a lot of attention as a potential solution in theragnosis of cancer. With the introduction of nanoscale metallic oxide materials, imaging techniques, disease detection, and treatment modalities could be enhanced. The health benefits of particles in applications such as cancer treatment have greatly motivated the extraction of iron oxide from a local source such as from bioinspired termite mound, to enhance localized hyperthermia treatment via laser application or by the use of magnetic resonance imaging (MRI). The clay ore obtained from the termite mound was ground and mechanically sieved to This size range provides large surface areas for the leaching process. A phosphoric acid solution at varying molarity (0.1 M, 0.5 M, 1.0 M, and 3.0 M) was employed to leach iron oxide from a clay mineral at . Elemental analysis using Energy Dispersive X-ray Spectroscopy (EDS) showed the raw clay initially contained 16.8% of iron content and was reduced to 2.27% after leaching with phosphoric acid. The functional group of the raw material was investigated with Fourier transform infrared radiation (FTIR) Spectroscopy. The UV/Vis spectroscopy technique was used to determine the presence of iron oxide within an absorbance range of 350-600 nm. Kinetics of the iron leaching process was also presented. Result agreed with previous studies on iron extraction using chemical means.