Locomotion of micromotors in paper chips

Paula De Dios Andres, Miguel A. Ramos-Docampo, Xiaomin Qian, Marian Stingaciu, Brigitte Städler*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journal/Conference contribution in journal/Contribution to newspaperJournal articleResearchpeer-review


Locomotion of nano/micromotors in non-aqueous environments remains a challenging task. We assembled magnetic micromotors with different surface coatings and explored their locomotion in paper chips. Poly(l-lysine) deposition resulted in positively charged micromotors. Immobilized cellulase was used to increase the micromotors' paper penetration depth while a polyethylene glycol (PEG) coating was employed to limit the interaction between the micromotors and the cellulose fibers. All micromotors were able to move in the top layers of the paper chips with velocities dependent on the magnetic forces used to induce their locomotion, their sizes and the types of employed paper chips. Maximum speeds of up to ∼25 μm s-1 were observed for PEGylated micromotors in the fibrous cellulose environment. This type of micromotors has the potential to be considered in the area of paper microfluidics to facilitate distribution, or collection of moieties for biosensing or cell culture. This journal is

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)17900-17911
Number of pages12
Publication statusPublished - Nov 2021


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