Short-term plasticity, multimodal memory, and logical responses mimicked in stretchable hydrogels
Zhouyue Lei, and Peiyi Wu*. Short-term plasticity, multimodal memory, and logical responses mimicked in stretchable hydrogels. Matter. 2023, 6, 429-444.
Stretchable hydrogels are developed to interact with biological interfaces through ionic signaling. However, the intelligence of artificial hydrogels is far less powerful than biological systems. There is no channel to mediate complex ion flows in signal transduction, and thus the existing bulk hydrogels lack the ability to process and memorize information in a logical manner. Herein, inspired by the biological ion channels, we develop asymmetric “trimeric” hydrogels to control the spatiotemporal distribution of ion flows. The hydrogels can sense external stimuli, encode logical responses, emulate synaptic plasticity, and even memorize images in a multistore model. More intriguingly, they are transparent, stretchable, and work stably under large deformation. They overcome the optical and mechanical limitations encountered by conventional electronic devices. The bionic design paves an avenue for intelligent hydrogel ionotronics and will bridge the gap between human-machine interfaces.