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Low frequency electrical waves in ensembles of proteinoid microspheres

Mougkogiannis, Panagiotis; Adamatzky, Andrew

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Panagiotis Mougkogiannis


Panagiotis Mougkogiannis

Panagiotis Mougkogiannis


Proteinoids (thermal proteins) are produced by heating amino acids to their melting point and initiation of polymerisation to produce polymeric chains. Amino acid-like molecules, or proteinoids, can condense at high temperatures to create aggregation structures called proteinoid microspheres, which have been reported to exhibit strong electrical oscillations. When the amino acids L-glutamic acid (L-Glu) and L-aspartic acid (L-Asp) were combined with electric fields of varying frequencies and intensities, electrical activity resulted. We recorded electrical activity of the proteinoid microspheres’ ensembles via a pair of differential electrodes. This is analogous to extracellular recording in physiology or EEG in neuroscience but at micro-level. We discovered that the ensembles produce spikes of electrical potential, an average duration of each spike is 26min and average amplitude is 1mV. The spikes are typically grouped in trains of two spikes. The electrical activity of the ensembles can be tuned by external stimulation because ensembles of proteinoid microspheres can generate and propagate electrical activity when exposed to electric fields.

Journal Article Type Article
Acceptance Date Jan 30, 2023
Online Publication Date Feb 3, 2023
Publication Date Feb 3, 2023
Deposit Date Feb 14, 2023
Publicly Available Date Feb 14, 2023
Journal Scientific Reports
Electronic ISSN 2045-2322
Publisher Nature Research (part of Springer Nature)
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Volume 13
Issue 1
Pages 1992
Keywords Biophysics; Materials science
Public URL
Publisher URL


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