Solar-driven photoelectrochemical probing of nanodot/nanowire/cell interface

Jing Tang, Yueyu Zhang, Biao Kong, Yongcheng Wang, Peimei Da, Jun Li, Ahmed A. Elzatahry, Dongyuan Zhao, Xingao Gong, Gengfeng Zheng

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119 Citations (Scopus)


We report a nitrogen-doped carbon nanodot (N-Cdot)/TiO2 nanowire photoanode for solar-driven, real-time, and sensitive photoelectrochemical probing of the cellular generation of H2S, an important endogenous gasotransmitter based on a tunable interfacial charge carrier transfer mechanism. Synthesized by a microwave-assisted solvothermal method and subsequent surface chemical conjugation, the obtained N-Cdot/TiO2 nanowire photoanode shows much enhanced photoelectrochemical photocurrent compared with pristine TiO2 nanowires. This photocurrent increase is attributed to the injection of photogenerated electrons from N-Cdots to TiO2 nanowires, confirmed by density functional theory simulation. In addition, the charge transfer efficiency is quenched by Cu2+, whereas the introduction of H2S or S2– ions resets the charge transfer and subsequently the photocurrent, thus leading to sensitive photoelectrochemical recording of the H2S level in buffer and cellular environments. Moreover, this N-Cdot-TiO2 nanowire photoanode has been demonstrated for direct growth and interfacing of H9c2 cardiac myoblasts, with the capability of interrogating H2S cellular generation pathways by vascular endothelial growth factor stimulation as well as inhibition.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2702-2708
Number of pages7
JournalNano Letters
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - 14 May 2014
Externally publishedYes

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