Stretchable and transparent metal nanowire microelectrodes for simultaneous electrophysiology and optogenetics applications

Jinbi Tian, Zexu Lin, Zhiyuan Chen, Sofian N. Obaid, Igor R. Efimov, Luyao Lu*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

9 Scopus citations


Recently developed optically transparent microelectrode technology provides a promising approach for simultaneous high-resolution electrical and optical biointerfacing with tissues in vivo and in vitro. A critically unmet need is designing high-performance stretchable platforms for con-formal biointerfacing with mechanically active organs. Here, we report silver nanowire (Ag NW) stretchable transparent microelectrodes and interconnects that exhibit excellent electrical and electrochemical performance, high optical transparency, superior mechanical robustness and durability by a simple selective-patterning process. The fabrication method allows the direct integration of Ag NW networks on elastomeric substrates. The resulting Ag NW interface exhibits a low sheet resistance (Rsh ) of 1.52–4.35 Ω sq−1, an advantageous normalized electrochemical impedance of 3.78–6.04 Ω cm2, a high optical transparency of 61.3–80.5% at 550 nm and a stretchability of 40%. The microelectrode arrays (MEAs) fabricated with this approach exhibit uniform electrochemical performance across all channels. Studies on mice demonstrate that both pristine and stretched Ag NW microelectrodes can achieve high-fidelity electrophysiological monitoring of cardiac activity with/without co-localized optogenetic pacing. Together, these results pave the way for developing stretchable and transparent metal nanowire networks for high-resolution opto-electric biointerfacing with mechanically active organs, such as the heart.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number220
Issue number6
StatePublished - Jun 2021


  • Electrophysiology
  • Nanowire
  • Optogenetics
  • Stretchable
  • Transparent microelectrodes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Atomic and Molecular Physics, and Optics
  • Instrumentation
  • Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging


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