Short Biography

Arben Merkoçi is ICREA Professor and director of the Nanobioelectronics & Biosensors Group at ICN2. After his PhD (1991) at Tirana University (Albania), in the topic of Ion-Selective-Electrodes (ISEs) Dr. Merkoçi worked as postdoc and senior researcher/invited professor in the field of nanobiosensors and lab-on-a-chip technologies in Italy, Spain, USA and since 2006 at ICN2. Prof. Merkoçi research is focused on the design and application of cutting edge nanotechnology and nanoscience based cost/efficient biosensors. The paper/plastic-based nanobiosensors involve integration of (bio)receptors with micro- and nanostructures/motors and applied in diagnostics, environmental monitoring or safety and security. He has published around 270 peer review research papers, supervised 27 PhD students and has been invited to give plenary lectures and keynote speeches in around 100 occasions in various countries. He is co-founder of two spin-off companies, PaperDrop  dedicated to nanodiagnostics and GraphenicaLab to electronic printing.


Graphene oxide (GO) and graphene quantum dots (GQDs) display advantageous characteristics with interest for building innovative biosensing platforms and even smart devices such as nano/micromotors for a myriad of uses including sensing. Quenching of the fluorescence induced by GO or photoluminescence of GQDs can easily operate in synergy with various other nanomaterials and platforms opening the way to several unprecedented biosensing strategies and unique nanomotor technologies. Taking advantage of GO, GQDs we are developing simple, sensitive, selective and rapid biosensing platforms that include: a) GO – based microarray & laterals flow technologies taking advantages of high quenching efficiency of GO. A “turn ON by a pathogen” device will be shown as a highly sensitive detection system using plastics or paper/nanopaper substrates; b) GQDs–based sensors for contaminants detection based on the use of multifunctional composite materials that enable rapid, simple and sensitive platforms in connection to smartphone; c) A water activated GO transfer technology using wax printed membranes for fast patterning of a touch sensitive device with interest for electronic devices including sensing as well as for a cost-efficient nanomotor building technology for several applications. This work is supported by EU (Graphene Flagship), CERCA Programme / Generalitat de Catalunya.

Selected References

[1]. Merkoçi et al., Adv. Mater. 24, 3298–3308 (2012).
[2]. Merkoçi et al., Angew. Chem. 52, 3779–13783 (2013).
[3]. Merkoçi et al., Adv. Mater. 29, 1604905 (2017).
[4]. Merkoçi et al., Progr. Mat. Sci., 1–24 (2017).