Molecular ferroelectrics: where electronics meet biology

Phys Chem Chem Phys. 2013 Dec 28;15(48):20786-96. doi: 10.1039/c3cp52501e.


In the last several years, we have witnessed significant advances in molecular ferroelectrics, with the ferroelectric properties of molecular crystals approaching those of barium titanate. In addition, ferroelectricity has been observed in biological systems, filling an important missing link in bioelectric phenomena. In this perspective, we will present short historical notes on ferroelectrics, followed by an overview of the fundamentals of ferroelectricity. The latest developments in molecular ferroelectrics and biological ferroelectricity will then be highlighted, and their implications and potential applications will be discussed. We close by noting molecular ferroelectric as an exciting frontier between electronics and biology, and a number of challenges ahead are also described.

Publication types

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

MeSH terms

  • Barium Compounds / chemistry*
  • Biology*
  • Electronics*
  • Magnetite Nanoparticles / chemistry*
  • Titanium / chemistry*


  • Barium Compounds
  • Magnetite Nanoparticles
  • barium titanate(IV)
  • Titanium