This page is dedicated to our ITN fellow Denise Demurtas. Feel free to contact Denise with any questions or remarks by clicking on Contact Denise.
ESR 6 - Ph.D Fellow
My research project included in ImplantSens consists in the preparation of a library of mesoporous gold electrodes, mesoporous enzyme modified electrodes and their characterisation.
A deeper look into the project description
The electrodes will have: different supports, different thicknesses using magnetron sputtering and electrochemical deposition methods, hierarchical and funnel-shaped pores with different a range from ca 5 nm to 100nm diameters obtained by de-alloying. Diameters will be tailored to accommodate the MRQ-GaOx and Cys-MRQ-GaOx variants (ESR4) and engineered cellobiose dehydrogenase (CDH) (ESR8).
Afterwards, the design will be focused on finding the best modification strategy for an enzyme controlled immobilisation, such as the use of self-assembled monolayers, diazonium modification, and electrodeposition of redox polymers encapsulated enzymes for optimised mediated and direct electron transfer (MET and DET) upon intermittent enzyme switching. The produced anodes will be also tested in enzymatic biofuel cells (EBFCs) to evaluate their potential use for self-powered miniaturized medical devices and, at the same time, their sensing performance.
The enzymatic sensors will be characterised in sample matrices varying the concentrations of glucose and galactose, giving information about their stability, limit of detection and sensitivity. EBFCs will be characterised in terms of power output, current density, stability in various media limit of detection and sensitivity, designing a suitable cathode. Examination of the effects of electrochemical switch on/off of the enzyme sensor by selective oxidation/reduction of a tyrosine residue confirmed. The most effective sensors designs will be provided for the cytotoxicity evaluation and subsequent integration into implantable systems.
Goal at the end of the ITN project
A switchable enzymatic sensor that can be implanted in animal models with minimal foreign body response, without the need of recalibration and a shelf-life of 20-30 days. Moreover, I will work on the design of a switchable EBFC membrane-less that monitors both the sugar concentration and produces enough energy to power a transmitter.
M.Sc Health, Medical and Veterinary Biotechnology & B.Sc Industrial Biotechnology.
“Success is not final, failure is not fatal: it is the courage to continue that counts.” - Winston Churchill
Professional background: : M.Sc Health, Medical and Veterinary Biotechnology & B.Sc Industrial Biotechnology
Host institute: Bernal Institute, University of Limerick
PhD Program Institution: University of Limerick
Supervisor: Prof. Edmond Magner
Scientific Interests:Electrochemistry, biosensors, enzymatic biofuel cell, biocompatibility.
Languages: Italian & English