Invited Speaker: Edible Electronics: Next generation medical devices for oral delivery

Young Jo Kim1, Wei Wu1, Sang-Eun Chun2, Jay F. Whitacre*1, and Christopher J. Bettinger*1,3

1Carnegie Mellon University, Pittsburgh, PA, 15213, 2Department of Chemistry, University of Oregon, Eugene, OR 97403, 3McGowan Institute for Regenerative Medicine, Pittsburgh, PA


Electronic medical implants serve as a key pillar in many therapeutic strategies. Although the sophistication of these implants has increased over recent years, many persistent challenges limit the impact of permanent device-based therapies including infection, chronic inflammation, and costly surgical procedures. Edible electronics represents a class of electronically active medical devices that can be deployed orally, reside in the gastrointestinal tract temporarily, and eventually pass through the body harmlessly with the feces1. Edible electronics would have far reaching diagnostic and therapeutic applications including devices for in vivo biosensing and controlled release of biologically active macromolecules. This work describes the design, synthesis, and characterization of batteries prepared from biological materials that can be used to power edible electronics.

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