Discover News 80 Beats - Aleksandr Noy claims to have created “the first example of a truly integrated bioelectronic system,” New Scientist says. And as simple as the transistor is, the idea behind it—harnessing the energy already in our bodies to power electronics—will be one of the keys to creating battery-free devices that monitor our cells, connect to our brains, or do things we won’t think of until we’ve got nanodevices hooked up to our brains.
Nanoletters - Carbon Nanotube Transistor Controlled by a Biological Ion Pump Gate
We report a hybrid bionanoelectronic transistor that has a local ATP-powered protein gate. ATP-dependent activity of a membrane ion pump, Na+/K+-ATPase, embedded in a lipid membrane covering the carbon nanotube, modulates the transistor output current by up to 40%. The ion pump gates the device by shifting the pH of the water layer between the lipid bilayer and nanotube surface. This transistor is a versatile bionanoelectronic platform that can incorporate other membrane proteins.