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Chemistry-A European Journal 2019, 25(15), 3828-3834

A Metal-Doped Fungi-Based Biomaterial for Advanced Electrocatalysis

Nature and its highly sophisticated biomaterials are an endless source of inspiration for engineers and scientists across a wide range of disciplines. During the last decade, concepts of bioinspired synthesis of hierarchically structured nano- and micromaterials have been attracting increasing attention. In this article, we have utilized the natural ability of fungi to absorb metal ions for a bioinspired synthesis of carbonaceous material doped by selected transition metals. As an all-around metal accumulator, Hebeloma mesophaeum was selected, and it was cultivated in the presence of three transition-metal ions: Ni-II, Fe-II, and Mn-II. The metal-doped carbonized biomaterial possessed enhanced catalytic activity toward hydrazine oxidation, oxygen reduction, and cumene hydroperoxide reduction. Thus, we have shown possible transformation of a waste product (fungi grown on a contaminated soil) into a value-added carbonaceous material with tailored catalytic properties. This bioinspired synthesis can outline an attractive route for the fabrication of catalysts for important industrial applications on a large scale.

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