ZnO Materials as Effective Anodes for the Photoelectrochemical Regeneration of Enzymatically Active NAD+

Carminna Ottone, Diego Pugliese, Marco Laurenti, Simelys HernÃindez, Valentina Cauda, Paula Grez, Lorena Wilson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

8 Scopus citations


This work reports the study of ZnO-based anodes for the photoelectrochemical regeneration of the oxidized form of nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide (NAD+). The latter is the most important coenzyme for dehydrogenases. However, the high costs of NAD+ limit the use of such enzymes at the industrial level. The influence of the ZnO morphologies (flower-like, porous film, and nanowires), showing different surface area and crystallinity, was studied. The detection of diluted solutions (0.1 mM) of the reduced form of the coenzyme (NADH) was accomplished by the flower-like and the porous films, whereas concentrations greater than 20 mM were needed for the detection of NADH with nanowire-shaped ZnO-based electrodes. The photocatalytic activity of ZnO was reduced at increasing concentrations of NAD+ because part of the ultraviolet irradiation was absorbed by the coenzyme, reducing the photons available for the ZnO material. The higher electrochemical surface area of the flower-like film makes it suitable for the regeneration reaction. The illumination of the electrodes led to a significant increase on the NAD+ regeneration with respect to both the electrochemical oxidation in dark and the only photochemical reaction. The tests with formate dehydrogenase demonstrated that 94% of the regenerated NAD+ was enzymatically active.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)10719-10727
Number of pages9
JournalACS Applied Materials and Interfaces
Issue number9
StatePublished - 10 Mar 2021


  • NAD+ regeneration
  • bioelectrochemistry
  • dehydrogenases
  • nanostructures
  • photocatalysis
  • zinc oxide


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