Free-standing flexible and biomimetic hybrid membranes for ions and ATP transport

Brenda G Molina, Maximilien Lopes-Rodrigues, Francesc Estrany, Catherine Michaux, Eric A Perpete, Elaine Armelin, Carlos Aleman

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The transport of metabolites across robust, flexible and free-standing biomimetic membranes made of three perforated poly (lactic acid) (pPLA) layers, separated by two anodically polymerized conducting layers of poly (3,4-ethylenedioxythiophene-co-3-dodecylthiophene), and functionalized on the external pPLA layers with a voltage dependent anion channel (VDAC) protein, has been demonstrated. The three pPLA layers offer robustness and flexibility to the bioactive platform and the possibility of obtaining conducing polymer layers by in situ anodic polymerization. The incorporation of dodecylthiophene units, which bear a 12 carbon atoms long linear alkyl chain, to the conducting layers allows mimicking the amphiphilic environment offered by lipids in cells, increasing 32% the efficiency of the functionalization. Electrochemical impedance measurements in NaCl and adenosine triphosphate (ATP) solutions prove that the integration of the VDAC porin inside the PLA perforations considerably increases the membrane conductivity and is crucial for the electrolyte diffusion. Such results open the door for the development of advanced sensing devices for a broad panel of biomedical applications.

Original languageEnglish
Article number117931
JournalJournal of Membrane Science
Publication statusPublished - 1 Mar 2020


  • Conducting polymers
  • Membrane proteins
  • Membranes
  • Polylactic acid
  • Self-supported films


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