Frédéric Barrière, researcher from ISCR – Université de Rennes 1 will give a lecture on “Bacteria as Living Catalysts at Modified Electrodes: Mechanism and Applications” the 19th  September 2023 at the Institute for Analytical Sciences (11:00 am – seminar room).

Abstract: The reductionist biomimetic synthesis of active sites of enzymes often fails to produce simple artificial catalysts that compete with the performance and selectivity of enzymes.1 The direct use of extracted and isolated enzymes at electrodes is possible but suffer from poor catalytic stability in time.2 I will discuss the use of living micro-organisms as electrode catalysts (SEM micrograph below).2 We will address the underlying metabolic mechanisms for exo-cellular electron transfer at anodes3 (e.g. oxidation of acetate) and at cathodes4 (e.g. reduction of dioxygen). One of our interests in the field of bioelectrochemical systems is the tailoring of the microbial-electrode interface through surface grafting in order to improve the development of electroactive biofilm and its electrical connection.3 Several examples of surface modification involving electrostatic or more specific interactions will be presented. Possible applications in energy conversion, bioremediation or sensing will be put forward.5

  1. F. Barrière, in Bioinspired Catalysis: Metal-Sulfur Complexes, Eds.: P. Schollhammer & W. Wiegand, John Wiley & Sons, Inc., Chapter 9, p. 225-248 (2014).
  2. A. Kumar, H.-H. Hsu, P. Kavanagh, F. Barrière, P. N. L. Lens, L. Lapinsonnière, J. H. Lienhard V, U. Schröder, X. Jiang, D. Leech “The ins and outs of microbial-electrode electron transfer reactions” Nature Reviews Chemistry, 2017, 1, 0024.
  3. M. Picot, L. Lapinsonnière, M. Rothballer, F. Barrière, “Graphite Anode Surface Modification with Controlled Reduction of Specific Aryl Diazonium Salts for Improved Microbial Fuel Cells Power Output” Biosensors & Bioelectronics, 2011, 28, 181-188.
  4. A. ter Heijne, O. Schaetzle, S. Gimenez, F. Fabregat-Santiago, J. Bisquert, D. P. B. T. B. Strik, F. Barrière, C. J. N. Buisman, H. V. M. Hamelers “Electrochemical impedance spectroscopy for identifying charge and mass transfer resistance of an oxygen biocathode” Energy and Environmental Science, 2011, 4, 5035-5043.
  5. Y. R. J. Thomas, M. Picot, A. Carer, O. Berder., O Sientieys, F. Barrière, “A single sediment-Microbial Fuel Cell powering a wireless telecommunication system” Journal of Power Sources, 2013, 241, 703-708.