New Frontiers and Challenges for Single-Cell Electrochemical Analysis

Jingjing Zhang, Junyu Zhou, Rongrong Pan, Dechen Jiang, James Burgess, Hong Yuan Chen

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

45 Scopus citations


Previous measurements of cell populations might obscure many important cellular differences, and new strategies for single-cell analyses are urgently needed to re-examine these fundamental biological principles for better diagnosis and treatment of diseases. Electrochemistry is a robust technique for the analysis of single living cells that has the advantages of minor interruption of cellular activity and provides the capability of high spatiotemporal resolution. The achievements of the past 30 years have revealed significant information about the exocytotic events of single cells to elucidate the mechanisms of cellular activity. Currently, the rapid developments of micro/nanofabrication and optoelectronic technologies drive the development of multifunctional electrodes and novel electrochemical approaches with higher resolution for single cells. In this Perspective, three new frontiers in this field, namely, electrochemical microscopy, intracellular analysis, and single-cell analysis in a biological system (i.e., neocortex and retina), are reviewed. The unique features and remaining challenges of these techniques are discussed.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)242-250
Number of pages9
JournalACS Sensors
Issue number2
StatePublished - Feb 23 2018


  • electrochemical microscopy
  • high spatiotemporal resolution
  • intracellular analysis
  • nanoelectrodes
  • single-cell electrochemical analysis

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Bioengineering
  • Instrumentation
  • Process Chemistry and Technology
  • Fluid Flow and Transfer Processes


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