Electro-addressable conductive alginate hydrogel for bacterial trapping and general toxicity determination

N. Vigués, F. Pujol-Vila, A. Marquez-Maqueda, X. Muñoz-Berbel, J. Mas

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearch

13 Citations (Scopus)


© 2018 Elsevier B.V. In biosensors development, alginate hydrogels are a first choice for enabling stable biomolecules entrapment in biocompatible membranes obtained under soft physiological conditions. Although widely exploited, most alginate membranes are isolating and poorly repetitive, which limit their application in biosensing. Significant steps forward on improving repeatability and conductivity have been performed, but to date there is no single protocol for controlled deposition of live cells in replicable conductive alginate layers. Here, cell electrotrapping in conductive alginate hydrogels is examined in order to overcome these limitations. Conductive alginate-coated electrodes are obtained after potentiostatic electrodeposition of graphite-doped alginate samples (up to 4% graphite). The presence of graphite reduces electrode passivation and improves the electrochemical response of the sensor, although still significantly lower than that recorded with the naked electrode. Bacterial electrotrapping in the conductive matrix is highly efficient (4.4 × 10 7 cells per gel) and repetitive (CV < 0.5%), and does not compromise bacterial integrity or activity (cell viability = 56%). Biosensing based on ferricyanide respirometry yielded a four times increase in biosensor response with respect to non-conductive alginate membrane, providing toxicity values completely comparable to those reported. Cell electrotrapping in conductive hydrogels represents a step forward towards in high-sensitive cell-based biosensors development with important influence in environmental analysis, food and beverage industry as well as clinical diagnosis.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)115-120
JournalAnalytica Chimica Acta
Publication statusPublished - 7 Dec 2018


  • Alginate electrodeposition
  • Amperometric biosensor
  • Bacterial entrapment
  • Conductive hydrogels
  • Microbial sensor
  • Toxicity assessment


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