Biohybrid, Biomimetic, Bioinspired, Bionic (B4) Systems Membranes and their Potential Applications 

L. Giorno, R. Mazzei, E. Piacentini, T. Poerio, G. Vitola, F. Bazzarelli, S. Regina, E. Drioli
 National Research Council of Italy, Institute on Membrane Technology CNR-ITM, Via P. Bucci, CUBO 17C, 87036 Rende (CS) Italy

The development of artificial systems membranes able to reach the performance of natural systems membranes (in terms of selectivity, antifouling, self-cleaning, self-repairing, surface-to-volume ratio, processes integration, etc.) is still an open challenge.

On the other hand,  the understanding of fundamentals and mechanisms in the field of interactions at molecular and supramolecular levels that govern hierarchical assembling at nanoscale and lead to target structures and functions, opens for breakthroughs in the field.  

To design, tailor and fine-tune  bio-artificial systems membranes it is possible to use the large variety of biomolecules, natural materials and processes. Besides, the biomimetic, bioinspired and bionic approaches offer the additional advantage of not being limited by nature-derived materials and processes tolerated by life. 

This lecture aims to offer a picture on B4 systems membranes, including procedures and technologies for their fabrication, functionalization and characterization, and to present their properties and potential applications, with particular focus on the biotechnology, biomedicine, biorefinery, biosensor and water treatment areas contributed by the authors.