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A Metabolic Biofuel Cell: Conversion of Human Leukocyte Metabolic Activity to Electrical Currents

Justin, GA and Zhang, Y and Cui, XT and Bradberry, CW and Sun, M and Sclabassi, RJ (2011) A Metabolic Biofuel Cell: Conversion of Human Leukocyte Metabolic Activity to Electrical Currents. Journal of Biological Engineering, 5.

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Abstract

An investigation of the electrochemical activity of human white blood cells (WBC) for biofuel cell (BFC) applications is described. WBCs isolated from whole human blood were suspended in PBS and introduced into the anode compartment of a proton exchange membrane (PEM) fuel cell. The cathode compartment contained a 50 mM potassium ferricyanide solution. Average current densities between 0.9 and 1.6 μA cm-2 and open circuit potentials (Voc) between 83 and 102 mV were obtained, which were both higher than control values. Cyclic voltammetry was used to investigate the electrochemical activity of the activated WBCs in an attempt to elucidate the mechanism of electron transfer between the cells and electrode. Voltammograms were obtained for the WBCs, including peripheral blood mononuclear cells (PBMCs - a lymphocyte-monocyte mixture isolated on a Ficoll gradient), a B lymphoblastoid cell line (BLCL), and two leukemia cell lines, namely K562 and Jurkat. An oxidation peak at about 363 mV vs. SCE for the PMA (phorbol ester) activated primary cells, with a notable absence of a reduction peak was observed. Oxidation peaks were not observed for the BLCL, K562 or Jurkat cell lines. HPLC confirmed the release of serotonin (5-HT) from the PMA activated primary cells. It is believed that serotonin, among other biochemical species released by the activated cells, contributes to the observed BFC currents. © 2011 Justin et al; licensee BioMed Central Ltd.


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Details

Item Type: Article
Status: Published
Creators/Authors:
CreatorsEmailPitt UsernameORCID
Justin, GA
Zhang, Yzhang3@pitt.eduZHANG3
Cui, XTxic11@pitt.eduXIC110000-0002-0470-2005
Bradberry, CWbradberr@pitt.eduBRADBERR
Sun, Mdrsun@pitt.eduDRSUN
Sclabassi, RJ
Date: 10 May 2011
Date Type: Publication
Journal or Publication Title: Journal of Biological Engineering
Volume: 5
DOI or Unique Handle: 10.1186/1754-1611-5-5
Schools and Programs: School of Medicine > Medicine
School of Medicine > Neurological Surgery
School of Medicine > Psychiatry
Swanson School of Engineering > Bioengineering
Refereed: Yes
Date Deposited: 28 Oct 2016 17:42
Last Modified: 15 Jan 2020 16:55
URI: http://d-scholarship.pitt.edu/id/eprint/30065

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