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Electrochemical Impedance Spectroscopy Study on Polymerization of l‑Lysine on Electrode Surface and Its Application for Immobilization and Detection of Suspension Cells

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posted on 15.07.2014, 00:00 authored by Baozhen Huang, Ningming Jia, Lina Chen, Liang Tan, Shouzhuo Yao
Poly-l-lysine (PLL), which has been employed as a conductive polymer in the construction of some electrochemical sensors, can be prepared using l-lysine by cyclic voltammetry (CV) with a wide potential range. However, the presented explanation and description about its polymerization mechanism seems oversimplified because the self-reaction of electrode and the electrolysis of solvent at high potential are ignored. This work presents an intensive investigation on the relevant reactions during the process of PLL-polymerization using CV, X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy, Fourier transform-infrared spectroscopy, and electrochemical impedance spectroscopy. At a higher positive potential, the transfer from lysine molecules to cation radicals and the polymerization reaction on the glassy carbon electrode (GCE) could be achieved, accompanied by the activation of GCE, the formation of oxygen-containing functional groups, and the generation of oxygen derived from the oxidation of water. The adsorbed oxygen had a seriously negative effect on the formation of PLL unless it suffered reduction at a lower negative potential. The charge transfer through the electrochemical polymerized PLL film was seriously hindered by the immobilization of suspension cells due to the electrostatic interaction. The charge-transfer resistance difference (ΔRct) was increased with the enhancement of the cell number (Ncells) and the 1/ΔRct value displayed a linear response with 1/Ncells in the range of 5.0 × 102–1.0 × 105 cells with a detection limit of 180 cells estimated at a signal-to-noise ratio of 3. A sensitive electrochemical sensor for the quantitative detection of suspension cells was developed.