Nano Research

Article Title

Rapid identification of electricigens via silver-plated photonic crystal filters


electricigens, surface-enhanced Ramanscattering (SERS), photonic crystal, electroless plating


Short acquisition time and small volumes of incubated bacterial cultures areideal for the routine and rapid identification or screening of electricigens inresearch and applications of microbial fuel cells. In this study, a functionalsubstrate based on colloidal photonic crystals (PCs) was developed both for thefiltration and identification of electricigens by surface-enhanced Raman scattering(SERS). The fabrication of the substrate was simplified by electroless platingof silver on filtration-based self-assembled PCs on a filter membrane. Thesilver-plated ordered PC structure provided a 107-fold enhancement of Ramanintensity compared to that obtained with a bare PC substrate. The substrateallowed for a “drop and measure” method of bacterial identification within5 min with a 5 μL sample volume only. The results showed that not only theelectricigens Geobacter sp. and Shewanella sp. could be discriminated with speciesand strain specificity, but also Geobacter sp. and pilus-mutated Geobacter sp.strains. The developed silver-plated PC filter offers tremendous opportunitiesin energetic, environmental, and clinical applications.

Graphical Abstract


Tsinghua University Press