Mammalian Fuel Cells Produce Electric Current

Yaniv Shlosberg, Mohamed A. Faynus, Ailun Huang, Andrea S. Carlini, Dennis O. Clegg, Richard B. Kaner

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations


The increasing concern about climate change has led scientists around the world to develop clean energy technologies that may replace the traditional use of fossil fuels. A promising approach is the utilization of unicellular organisms as electron donors in bio-fuel cells. To date, this method has been limited to microorganisms such as bacteria, yeast, and microalgae. In this work, we show for the first time the concept of using mammalian cell cultures and organoids as electron donors in biofuel cells. We apply cyclic voltammetry to show that upon association of ARPE19 cells with the anode, they release reducing molecules to produce electricity. Furthermore, we apply 2D-fluorescence measurements and show that upon illumination, photosensitive stem cell-derived retinal organoids, which consist of rod photoreceptors and interneurons, secrete NADH and NADPH molecules that can donate electrons at the anode to produce photocurrent.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)34992-35000
Number of pages9
JournalACS applied materials & interfaces
Issue number29
StatePublished - 26 Jul 2023
Externally publishedYes


  • fluorescence
  • fuel cells
  • mammalian cells
  • organoids
  • supercapacitor

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Materials Science


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