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Electrical stimulation has been used successfully for several decades for the treatment of neurodegenerative disorders, including motor disorders, pain, and psychiatric disorders. These technologies typically rely on the modulation of neural activity through the focused delivery of electrical pulses. Recent research, however, has shown that electrically triggered neuromodulation can be further enhanced when coupled with optical stimulation, an approach that can benefit from the development of novel electrode materials that combine transparency with excellent electrochemical and biological performance. In this study, we describe an electrochemically modified, nanostructured indium tin oxide/poly(ethylene terephthalate) (ITO/PET) surface as a flexible, transparent, and cytocompatible electrode material. Electrochemical oxidation and reduction of ITO/PET electrodes in the presence of an ionic liquid based on d-glucopyranoside and bistriflamide units were performed, and the electrochemical behavior, conductivity, capacitance, charge transport processes, surface morphology, optical properties, and cytocompatibility were assessed in vitro. It has been shown that under selected conditions, electrochemically modified ITO/PET films remained transparent and highly conductive and were able to enhance neural cell survival and neurite outgrowth. Consequently, electrochemical modification of ITO/PET electrodes in the presence of an ionic liquid is introduced as an effective approach for tailoring the properties of ITO for advanced bio-optoelectronic applications.


Katarzyna Krukiewicz, Dominika Czerwińska-Główka, Roman Maria Turczyn, Agata Blacha-Grzechnik, Catalina Vallejo-Giraldo, Karol Erfurt, Anna Chrobok, Jérôme Faure-Vincent, Stéphanie Pouget, David Djurado, Manus J P Biggs. Flexible, Transparent, and Cytocompatible Nanostructured Indium Tin Oxide Thin Films for Bio-optoelectronic Applications. ACS applied materials & interfaces. 2023 Oct 04;15(39):45701-45712

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PMID: 37737728

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