Improving charge collection in Escherichia coli-carbon electrode devices with conjugated oligoelectrolytes
Reference: Physical Chemistry Chemical Physics (2013) 15(16): 5867-5872

It is important to tailor biotic-abiotic interfaces in order to maximize the utility of bioelectronic devices such as microbial fuel cells (MFCs), electrochemical sensors and bioelectrosynthetic systems. The efficiency of electron-equivalent extraction (or injection) across such biotic-abiotic interfaces is dependent on the choice of the microbe and the conductive electrode material. In this contribution, we show that spontaneous intercalation of a conjugated oligoelectrolyte, namely 4,4[prime or minute]-bis(4[prime or minute]-(N,N-bis(6[prime or minute][prime or minute]-(N,N,N-trimethylammonium)hexyl)amino)-styryl)stilbene tetraiodide (DSSN+), into the membranes of Escherichia coli leads to an increase in current generation in MFCs containing carbon-based electrodes. A combination of scanning electron microscopy (SEM) and confocal microscopy was employed to confirm the incorporation of DSSN+ into the cell membrane and biofilm formation atop carbon felt electrodes. Current collection was enhanced by more than 300% with addition of this conjugated oligoelectrolyte. The effect of DSSN+ concentration on electrical output was also investigated. Higher concentrations, up to 25 [small mu ]M, lead to an overall increase in the number of charge equivalents transferred to the charge-collecting electrode, providing evidence in support of the central role of the synthetic system in improving device performance.

Wang V. B., Du J., Chen X., Thomas A. W., Kirchhofer N. D., Garner L. E., Maw M. T., Poh W. H., Hinks J., Wuertz S., Kjelleberg S., Zhang Q., Loo J. S. C. and Bazan G. C.

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Wang V. B., Du J., Chen X., Thomas A.W., Kirchhofer N.D., Garner L.E., Maw M.T., Poh W.H., Hinks J., Wuertz S., Kjelleberg S., Zhang Q., Loo J. S. C., Bazan G. C.