D. L. Bellin, H. Sakhtah, Y. Zhang, A. Price-Whelan, L. E.P. Dietrich & K. L. Shepard Electrochemical camera chip for simultaneous imaging of multiple metabolites in biofilms. Nat. Commun. 7:10535 doi: 10.1038/ncomms10535 (2016).


Monitoring spatial distribution of metabolites in multicellular structures can enhance understanding of the biochemical processes and regulation involved in cellular community development. Here we report on an electrochemical camera chip capable of simultaneous spatial imaging of multiple redox-active phenazine metabolites produced by Pseudomonas aeruginosa PA14 colony biofilms. The chip features an 8mm8mm array of 1,824 electrodes multiplexed to 38 parallel output channels. Using this chip, we demonstrate potential-sweepbased electrochemical imaging of whole-biofilms at measurement rates in excess of 0.2 s per electrode. Analysis of mutants with various capacities for phenazine production reveals distribution of phenazine-1-carboxylic acid (PCA) throughout the colony, with 5-methylphenazine-1-carboxylic acid (5-MCA) and pyocyanin (PYO) localized to the colony edge. Anaerobic growth on nitrate confirms the O2-dependence of PYO production and indicates an effect of O2 availability on 5-MCA synthesis. This integrated-circuit-based technique promises wide applicability in detecting redox-active species from diverse biological samples.