Research funded by the ICB has resulted in a joint patent between UCSB and the U.S. Army Research Laboratory (ARL). The patent results from collaborative research between ARL's Jim Sumner and ICB-UCSB researchers Gui Bazan and Logan Garner.
U.S. Patent #8614021 B2
Agents for Enhanced Charge Transport Across Microbial Membranes
The invention provides molecules useful for enhancing charge transport across membranes, such as electron transport across membranes, and methods of using such molecules, for example in improving the performance of a microbial fuel cell or in staining microbes for observation. The amphiphilic molecule comprises a conjugated core with hydrophilic groups on either end. The amphiphilic molecule inserts into the membrane of a microbe and facilitates charge transfer across the membrane of the microbe.