Nanoscale engineering of a cellular interface with semiconductor nanoparticle films for photoelectric stimulation of neurons

Nano Lett. 2007 Feb;7(2):513-9. doi: 10.1021/nl062513v.


The remarkable optical and electrical properties of nanostructured materials are considered now as a source for a variety of biomaterials, biosensing, and cell interface applications. In this study, we report the first example of hybrid bionanodevice where absorption of light by thin films of quantum confined semiconductor nanoparticles of HgTe produced by the layer-by-layer assembly stimulate adherent neural cells via a sequence of photochemical and charge-transfer reactions. We also demonstrate an example of nanoscale engineering of the material driven by biological functionalities.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, Non-P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Action Potentials / radiation effects
  • Animals
  • Cell Line
  • Electric Stimulation
  • Mercury Compounds / chemistry
  • Mice
  • Microscopy, Phase-Contrast
  • Nanotechnology / methods
  • Neurons / physiology*
  • Neurons / radiation effects*
  • Neurons / ultrastructure
  • Photobiology
  • Quantum Dots*
  • Tellurium / chemistry


  • Mercury Compounds
  • Tellurium