Electricity From Biofluid

  • Author: ChemistryViews
  • Published: 08 November 2010
  • Copyright: Wiley-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA
  • Source / Publisher: Advanced Materials/Wiley-VCH
thumbnail image: Electricity From Biofluid

The most abundant energy source for nanodevices for in vivo biomedical sensing is chemical and biochemical energy from biofluids containing glucose. Harnessing this energy could lead to self-powered devices for a range of applications.


Jing Zhu and co-workers, Tsinghua University, P. R. China, have used a single proton conductive polymer nanowire (NW) to convert chemical energy from biofluids into electricity, by using glucose oxidase and laccase as catalysts.


The NW was a Nafion®/poly(vinyl pyrrolidone) composite of typical diameter of 200–800 nm. The enzymes were immobilized at either end of the NW. When placed in contact with a biofluid, glucose was electrooxidized to gluconolactone at the anode and dissolved O2 was electroreduced to water at the cathode.


A single NW could generate an output power of 0.5–3 μW, which is sufficient to drive pH, glucose or photon sensors.


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