GABA Detection with Nano-ITIES Pipet Electrode: A New Mechanism, Water/DCE-Octanoic Acid Interface

Nicholas Toshio Iwai, Michelle Kramaric, Daniel Crabbe, Yuanyuan Wei, Ran Chen, Mei Shen

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Interface between two immiscible electrolyte solutions (ITIES) supported on the orifice of a pipet have become a powerful platform to detect a broad range of analytes. We present here the detection of γ-aminobutyric acid (GABA) with the nanoITIES pipet electrodes for the first time. GABA has a net charge of zero in an aqueous solution at pH ≈ 7, and it has not previously been detected at ITIES. In this work, we demonstrated GABA detection at ITIES in an aqueous solution at pH ≈ 7, where we introduced a novel detection strategy based on "pH modulation from the oil phase". To the best of our knowledge, this is the first report of such. Current increases linearly with increasing concentrations of GABA, ranging from 0.25 mM to 1.0 mM. The measured half-wave transfer potential of GABA is -0.401 ± 0.010 V (n = 22) vs E1/2,TBA. The measured diffusion coefficient for GABA detection at nanoITIES pipet electrode is 6.09 (±0.58) × 10-10 m2/s (n = 5). Experimental results indicate that protons generated from octanoic acid dissociation in the oil phase do not come out from the oil phase into the aqueous phase; neither were protons produced in the aqueous phase. NanoITIES pipet electrodes with radii of 320-340 nm were used in the current study. This new strategy and knowledge presented here lays the groundwork for the future development of ITIES pipet electrodes, especially for the detection of electrochemically nonredox active analytes.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)3067-3072
Number of pages6
JournalAnalytical Chemistry
Issue number5
StatePublished - Mar 6 2018

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Analytical Chemistry


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