Collect. Czech. Chem. Commun. 2004, 69, 292-308

Two Photobioelectrochemical Applications of Self-Assembled Films on Mercury

Francesco Tadini Buoninsegni, Andrea Dolfi and Rolando Guidelli*

Department of Chemistry, Florence University, Via della Lastruccia 3, 50019 Sesto Fiorentino (Firenze), Italy


The homogeneous, defect-free surface of a hanging mercury drop electrode was used to self-assemble films apt for the investigation of two photobioelectrochemical systems. Monolayers of straight-chain C12-C18 alkane-1-thiols were anchored to a hanging mercury drop electrode and a film of chlorophyll was self-assembled on the top of them. The dependence of the photocurrents generated by illumination of the chlorophyll film with red light, on the thickness of the alkane-1-thiol monolayer and the applied potential is discussed. The photocurrents of purple membrane fragments, adsorbed on a mixed hexadecane-1-thiol/ dioleoylphosphatidylcholine bilayer self-assembled on mercury, were investigated in the presence of sodium perchlorate, chloride and acetate. The effect of the anions on the kinetics of the light-driven proton transport by bacteriorhodopsin has been determined.

Keywords: Photobioelectrochemistry; Photochemistry; Electrochemistry; Chlorophyll; Bacteriorhodopsin; Alkanethiol monolayers; Mercury-supported films.

References: 52 live references.