Title: Hybrid Photonic Nanostructures by In Vivo Incorporation of an Organic Fluorophore into Diatom Algae
Authors: RAGNI ROBERTASCOTOGNELLA FRANCESCOVONA DANILOMORETTI LUCAALTAMURA EMILIANOCECCONE GIACOMOMĖHN DÓRACICCO STEFANIAPALUMBO FABIOLANZANI GUGLIELMOFARINOLA G M
Citation: ADVANCED FUNCTIONAL MATERIALS p. 1706214
Publisher: WILEY-V C H VERLAG GMBH
Publication Year: 2018
JRC N°: JRC109385
ISSN: 1616-301X
URI: http://publications.jrc.ec.europa.eu/repository/handle/JRC109385
DOI: 10.1002/adfm.201706214
Type: Articles in periodicals and books
Abstract: Biotechnological processes harnessing living organisms’ metabolism are low-cost routes to nanostructured materials for applications in photonics, electronics and nanomedicine. In the pursuit of photonic biohybrids, diatoms microalgae are attractive given the properties of the porous micro-to-nanoscale structures of the biosilica shells (frustules) they produce. Our investigations have focused on in vivo incorporation of tailored molecular fluorophores into the frustules of Thalassiosira weissflogii diatoms, using a procedure that paves the way for easy biotechnological production of photonic nanostructures. The procedure ensures uniform staining of shells in the treated culture and permits the resulting biohybrid photonic nanostructures to be isolated with no damage to the dye and periodic biosilica network. Significantly, this approach ensures that light emission from the dye embedded in the isolated biohybrid silica is modulated by the silica’s nanostructure, whereas no modulation of photoluminescence is observed upon grafting the fluorophore onto frustules by an in vitro approach based on surface chemistry. These results pave the way to the possibility of easy production of photonic nanostructures with tuneable properties by simple feeding the diatoms algae with tailored photoactive molecules.
JRC Directorate:Health, Consumers and Reference Materials

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