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2020 • Nanoscale

Carbon nanostructures as a scaffold for human embryonic stem cell differentiation toward photoreceptor precursors

Yoav Chemla, Efrat Shawat Avraham, Amos Markus, Eti Teblum, Aviad Slotky, Yulia Kostikov, Nairouz Farah, Madina Telkhozhayeva, Irit Shoval, Gilbert Daniel Nessim, Yossi Mandel

Carbon nanomaterials have been introduced as a scaffold for various biological applications due to their unique physical and electrical properties. Here we studied carbon nanotubes (CNTs) and carbon nanofibers (CNFs) as scaffold materials for the differentiation of human embryonic stem cells (hESCs) towards photoreceptor precursor cells (PRPs). We report on their cytoxicity, their effect on cell morphology, cell-surface interface and the differentiation process. To this end, hESCs were differentiated into PRPs on carbon nanofibers (CNFs), long horizontal CNTs (LHCNTs), vertically aligned CNTs (VACNTs) or glass (control) surfaces. The differentiated cells were investigated by immunohistochemistry, fluorescence imaging and electron microscopy. Our results revealed that the investigated nanomaterials were not cytotoxic to the cells during the differentiation process. The surface interface effect on the cells was …

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2020 • Soft Matter

Non-equilibrium interaction between catalytic colloids: boundary conditions and penetration depth

Alexander Y Grosberg, Yitzhak Rabin

Spherical colloids that catalyze the interconversion reaction A B between solute molecules A and B whose concentration at infinity is maintained away from equilibrium effectively interact due to the non-uniform fields of solute concentrations. We show that this long range 1/r interaction is suppressed via a mechanism that is superficially reminiscent but qualitatively very different from electrostatic screening: catalytic activity drives the concentrations of solute molecules towards their equilibrium values and reduces the chemical imbalance that drives the interaction between the colloids. The imposed non-equilibrium boundary conditions give rise to a variety of geometry-dependent scenarios; while long-range interactions are suppressed (except for a finite penetration depth) in the bulk of the colloid solution in 3D, they can persist in quasi-2D geometry in which the colloids but not the solutes are confined to a surface …

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2020 • Proc. of SPIE Vol

Nanoscale Imaging, Sensing, and Actuation for Biomedical Applications XVII

D Fixler, EM Goldys, S Wachsmann-Hogiu

The papers in this volume were part of the technical conference cited on the cover and title page. Papers were selected and subject to review by the editors and conference program committee. Some conference presentations may not be available for publication. Additional papers and presentation recordings may be available online in the SPIE Digital Library at SPIEDigitalLibrary. org.

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2020

Impact of SnF₂ Addition on the Chemical and Electronic Surface Structure of CsSnBr₃

Claudia Hartmann, Satyajit Gupta, Tatyana Bendikov, Xeniya Kozina, Thomas Kunze, Roberto Félix, Gary Hodes, Regan G Wilks, David Cahen, Marcus Bär

We report on the chemical and electronic structure of cesium tin bromide (CsSnBr₃) and how it is impacted by the addition of 20 mol % tin fluoride (SnF₂) to the precursor solution, using both surface-sensitive lab-based soft X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy (XPS) and near-surface bulk-sensitive synchrotron-based hard XPS (HAXPES). To determine the reproducibility and reliability of conclusions, several (nominally identically prepared) sample sets were investigated. The effects of deposition reproducibility, handling, and transport are found to cause significant changes in the measured properties of the films. Variations in the HAXPES-derived compositions between individual sample sets were observed, but in general, they confirm that the addition of 20 mol % SnF₂ improves coverage of the titanium dioxide substrate by CsSnBr₃ and decreases the oxidation of Snᴵᴵ to Snᴵⱽ while also suppressing formation of secondary Br and Cs species. Furthermore, the (surface) composition is found to be Cs-deficient and Sn-rich compared to the nominal stoichiometry. The valence band (VB) shows a SnF₂-induced redistribution of Sn 5s-derived density of states, reflecting the changing Snᴵᴵ/Snᴵⱽ ratio. Notwithstanding some variability in the data, we conclude that SnF₂ addition decreases the energy difference between the VB maximum of CsSnBr₃ and the Fermi level, which we explain by defect chemistry considerations.

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2020 • Journal of Materials Chemistry A

High-rate Na 0.7 Li 2.3 V 2 (PO 4) 2 F 3 hollow sphere cathode prepared via a solvothermal and electrochemical ion exchange approach for lithium ion batteries

Ayan Mukherjee, Tali Sharabani, Ilana Perelshtein, Malachi Noked

Na3V2(PO4)2F3 (NVPF) has been extensively studied, and has demonstrated excellent electrochemical activity in Na-ion batteries owing to its high reversible specific capacity and stability. The direct chemical synthesis of a Li analogue of NVPF (LVPF) is aided by the high thermodynamic stability of intermediate products. Even more challenging is the synthesis of LVPF with a well-controlled uniform morphology and a stable crystal structure. Herein, an electrochemical ion exchange approach was used to synthesize Na0.7Li2.3V2(PO4)F3 (N0.7L2.3VPF), an isostructural composition of Li3V2(PO4)F3. This compound was prepared via lithiation of Na0.7V2(PO4)F3 with a hierarchical morphology prepared by desodiation of NVPF. We track the phase formation, reversible structural transformation from Pnnm to Cmc21 and back to Pnnm. An initial specific discharge capacity of 185 mA h g−1 and two distinct voltage …

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2020

CRISPR-based gene editing enables gene repair in IPEX patient cells.

M Goodwin, E Lee, U Lakshmanan, S Shipp, L Froessl, F Barzaghi, L Passerini, M Narula, A Sheikali, CM Lee, G Bao, CS Bauer, HK Miller, M Garcia-Lloret, MJ Butte, A Bertaina, A Shah, M Pavel-Dinu, A Hendel, M Porteus, MG Roncarolo, R Bacchetta

The prototypical genetic autoimmune disease is immune dysregulation polyendocrinopathy enteropathy X-linked (IPEX) syndrome, a severe pediatric disease with limited treatment options. IPEX syndrome is caused by mutations in the forkhead box protein 3 (FOXP3) gene, which plays a critical role in immune regulation. As a monogenic disease, IPEX is an ideal candidate for a therapeutic approach in which autologous hematopoietic stem and progenitor (HSPC) cells or T cells are gene edited ex vivo and reinfused. Here, we describe a CRISPR-based gene correction permitting regulated expression of FOXP3 protein. We demonstrate that gene editing preserves HSPC differentiation potential, and that edited regulatory and effector T cells maintain their in vitro phenotype and function. Additionally, we show that this strategy is suitable for IPEX patient cells with diverse mutations. These results demonstrate the feasibility of gene correction, which will be instrumental for the development of therapeutic approaches for other genetic autoimmune diseases.

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2020 • APS Division of Atomic, Molecular and Optical Physics Meeting Abstracts

Cluster state engineering by phase modulation of a quantum optical frequency comb

Olivier Pfister, Xuan Zhu, Chun-Hung Chang, Carlos Gonzalez-Arciniegas, Jacob Higgins, Avi Pe'Er

We report the discovery of a conceptually simple technique to generate and tailor universal quantum computing resources known as cluster entangled states, here of light. Our method uses a single source of pairwise entangled optical fields, ie, an optical parametric oscillator, and an electro-optic modulator, a common photonic device. We show that the combined action of the quantum source and of the phase modulator involves several tunable parameters that confer a high degree of quantum control over the generated quantum state, and can increase its topological dimension. This extremely simple architecture is highly compatible with on-chip integrated optics.

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2020

High-rate Na₀. ₇Li₂. ₃V₂ (PO₄) ₂F₃ hollow sphere cathode prepared via a solvothermal and electrochemical ion exchange approach for lithium ion batteries

Ayan Mukherjee, Tali Sharabani, Ilana Perelshtein, Malachi Noked

Na₃V₂(PO₄)₂F₃ (NVPF) has been extensively studied, and has demonstrated excellent electrochemical activity in Na-ion batteries owing to its high reversible specific capacity and stability. The direct chemical synthesis of a Li analogue of NVPF (LVPF) is aided by the high thermodynamic stability of intermediate products. Even more challenging is the synthesis of LVPF with a well-controlled uniform morphology and a stable crystal structure. Herein, an electrochemical ion exchange approach was used to synthesize Na₀.₇Li₂.₃V₂(PO₄)F₃ (N₀.₇L₂.₃VPF), an isostructural composition of Li₃V₂(PO₄)F₃. This compound was prepared via lithiation of Na₀.₇V₂(PO₄)F₃ with a hierarchical morphology prepared by desodiation of NVPF. We track the phase formation, reversible structural transformation from Pnnm to Cmc2₁ and back to Pnnm. An initial specific discharge capacity of 185 mA h g⁻¹ and two distinct voltage plateaus visualize the prominence of N₀.₇L₂.₃VPF as a cathode material for LIBs. It exhibits a specific discharge capacity of 173, 159, 154, 134 and 114 mA h g⁻¹ at 45, 105, 135, 265, and 535 mA g⁻¹ respectively along with >98% coulombic efficiency, which indicates pronounced electrochemical activity at high current rates due to better diffusivity of smaller Li⁺ ions than Na⁺ ions through the partially occupied alkali metal sites in the lattice. Long-term cycling at 45 mA g⁻¹ exhibits 173 mA h g⁻¹ with 96% of capacity retention for 200 cycles. This stable performance further indicates the prominence of N₀.₇L₂.₃VPF HMS as a cathode for LIBs. Our findings provide a strategic pathway towards controlling the …

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2020 • RSC Advances

First principles study of electrocatalytic behavior of olivine phosphates with mixed alkali and mixed transition metal atoms

Arup Chakraborty, Sooraj Kunnikuruvan, David Zitoun, Dan T Major

Lithium transition metal olivine phosphates are well known Li-ion battery cathode materials, but these materials can also be used as electrocatalyst. Recent experimental studies showed that olivine phosphates with mixed alkali metals (Li and Na) and mixed transition metals (Ni and Fe) provide better electrocatalytic activity compared to single alkali and transition metal alternatives. In the current work, we analyzed the role of alkali metals, transition metals and vacancies on the reactivity of a series of olivine phosphates with different stoichiometries using first principles calculations. To this end, we investigated the adsorption of water at the surface of these materials. We found that water binds preferably at Ni surface sites for materials devoid of alkali ion vacancies. We further found correlation between the calculated adsorption energy with experimentally measured overpotentials for a series of olivine phosphates …

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2020 • Frontiers in Earth Science

The impact of temperature, pressure and tectonic driving forces on radon and CO2 flow within the subsurface porous media-a dozen-year research summary

Hovav Zafrir, Susana Barbosa, Elad Levintal, Noam Weisbrod, Yochai Ben Horin, Zeev Zalevsky

Long-term monitoring of Rn-222 and CO2 at a depth of several tens of meters at the Sde-Eliezer site, located within one of the Dead Sea Fault Zone (DSFZ) segments in northern Israel, has led to the discovery of the clear phenomenon that both gases are affected by underground tectonic activity along the DSFZ. It may relate to pre-seismic processes associated with the accumulation and relaxation of lithospheric stress and strain producing earthquakes. This approach assumes that the climatic influence on Physico-chemical parameters is limited at depth since its strength decreases with the increase in the thickness of the geological cover. Hence, the monitoring of natural gases in deep boreholes above the water table enables to reduce the climatic-induced periodic contributions, and uncover the residual portion of the signals that seem to be associated, as indicated recently with regional geodynamic processes. The plausible pre-seismic local movement of the two gases at depth, is identified by the appearance of discrete, random, non-cyclical signals, wider in time duration than 20 hours and clearly wider than the sum of the width of the periodic diurnal and semidiurnal signals driven by ambient climatic parameters. These non-cyclical signals may precede, by one day or more, a forthcoming seismic event. Hence, it is plausible to conclude that monitoring of any other natural gas that is present at depth, may show a similar broadening signal and may serve as a precursor too. The necessary technical conditions enabling to distinguish between anomalous signals of gases that may be induced locally by pre-seismic processes at depth, and the …

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2020 • Lab on a Chip

Microfluidic-based linear-optics label-free imager

Omer Wagner, Eitan Edri, Pooria Hadikahani, Hagay Shpaisman, Zeev Zalevsky, Demetri Psaltis

Linear optics based nanoscopy previously reached resolution beyond the diffraction limit, illuminating samples in the visible light regime while allowing light to interact with freely moving metallic nanoparticles. However, the hydrodynamics governing the nanoparticle motion used to scan the sample is very complex and has low probability of achieving appropriate and fast mapping in practice. Hence, an implementation of the technique on real biological samples has not been demonstrated so far. Moreover, a suitable way to perform controlled nanoparticle scanning of biological samples is required. Here we show a solution where a microfluidic channel is used to flow and trap biological samples inside a water droplet along with suspended nanoparticles surrounded by silicone oil. The evanescent light scattered from the sample and is rescattered by the nanoparticles in the vicinity. This encodes the sub-wavelength …

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2020 • Nanoscale

Carbon nanostructures as a scaffold for human embryonic stem cell differentiation toward photoreceptor precursors

Yoav Chemla, Efrat Shawat Avraham, Amos Markus, Eti Teblum, Aviad Slotky, Yulia Kostikov, Nairouz Farah, Madina Telkhozhayeva, Irit Shoval, Gilbert Daniel Nessim, Yossi Mandel

Carbon nanomaterials have been introduced as a scaffold for various biological applications due to their unique physical and electrical properties. Here we studied carbon nanotubes (CNTs) and carbon nanofibers (CNFs) as scaffold materials for the differentiation of human embryonic stem cells (hESCs) towards photoreceptor precursor cells (PRPs). We report on their cytoxicity, their effect on cell morphology, cell-surface interface and the differentiation process. To this end, hESCs were differentiated into PRPs on carbon nanofibers (CNFs), long horizontal CNTs (LHCNTs), vertically aligned CNTs (VACNTs) or glass (control) surfaces. The differentiated cells were investigated by immunohistochemistry, fluorescence imaging and electron microscopy. Our results revealed that the investigated nanomaterials were not cytotoxic to the cells during the differentiation process. The surface interface effect on the cells was …

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2020 • mBio

Sensing Host Arginine Is Essential for Leishmania Parasites’ Intracellular Development

Shulamit Michaeli, Peter J Myler, Wen-Wei Zhang, Adele Goldman-Pinkovich, Madhu Puri, Aakash Sur, Greg Matlashewski, Yael Bar-Avraham, Roni Nitzan-Koren, Rentala Madhubala, Harsh Pawar, Sriram Kannan, Dan Zilberstein, Jacquelyn McDonald


2020 • RSC Advances

Engineering of NIR fluorescent PEGylated poly (RGD) proteinoid polymers and nanoparticles for drug delivery applications in chicken embryo and mouse models

Elad Hadad, Safra Rudnick-Glick, Igor Grinberg, Ronen Yehuda, Shlomo Margel

Proteinoids are non-toxic biodegradable polymers based on thermal step-growth polymerization of natural or synthetic amino acids. Hollow proteinoid nanoparticles (NPs) may then be formed via a self-assembly process of the proteinoid polymers in an aqueous solution. In the present article polymers and NPs based on D-arginine, glycine and L-aspartic acid, poly(RDGD), were synthesized for tumor targeting, particularly due to the high affinity of the RGD motif to areas of angiogenesis. Near IR fluorescent P(RDGD) NPs were prepared by encapsulating the fluorescent NIR dye indocyanine green (ICG) within the formed P(RDGD) NPs. Here, we investigate the effect of the covalent conjugation of polyethylene glycol (PEG), with different molecular weights, to the surface of the near IR encapsulated P(RDGD) NPs on the release of the dye to human serum due to bio-degradation of the proteinoid NPs and on the …

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2020 • Open Access Journal of Science and Technology

Using Carbon-Dots as initiators for the polymerization process

Aharon Gedanken

I will present results obtained in my group about the synthesisof polymers using both carbon dots (CDs) and UV light as initiators. Other cases in which, the carbon dots were used without UV light will also be reported. The CDs produce free radicals in the presence of UV light, indicating their role as initiators. The surface of CDs has many unshared or unpaired electrons, making it negatively charged. My presentation will focus on the use of CDs for the formation of polymers from monomers containing various functional group. The properties of the synthesized CDs and the polymers obtained from the various monomers were characterized by various analytical techniques, including Fourier-Transform Infrared (FTIR) spectroscopy, X-ray Diffraction (XRD), ThermogravimetricAnalysis (TGA) and Solid-State NMR spectroscopy. This polymerizationtechnique is of interest both from the scientific aspect and for its applicative …

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2020 • Journal of Pineal Research

Resource: A Multi‐species Multi‐timepoint Transcriptome Database and Webpage for the Pineal Gland and Retina

Eric Chang, Cong Fu, Steven L Coon, Shahar Alon, Marjan Bozinoski, Matthew Breymaier, Diego M Bustos, Samuel J Clokie, Yoav Gothilf, Caroline Esnault, P Michael Iuvone, Christopher E Mason, Margaret J Ochocinska, Adi Tovin, Charles Wang, Pinxian Xu, Jinhan Zhu, Ryan Dale, David C Klein

The website and database https://snengs.nichd.nih.gov provides RNA sequencing data from multi‐species analysis of the pineal glands from zebrafish (Danio rerio), chicken (White Leghorn), rat (Rattus novegicus), mouse (Mus musculus), rhesus macaque (Macaca mulatta), and human (Homo sapiens); in most cases, retinal data are also included along with results of the analysis of a mixture of RNA from tissues. Studies cover day and night conditions; in addition, a time series over multiple hours, a developmental time series and pharmacological experiments on rats are included. The data have been uniformly re‐processed using the latest methods and assemblies to allow for comparisons between experiments and to reduce processing differences. The website presents search functionality, graphical representations, Excel tables, and track hubs of all data for detailed visualization in the UCSC Genome Browser …

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2020 • Journal of Materials Chemistry B

Functionalized tungsten disulfide nanotubes for dopamine and catechol detection in a tyrosinase-based amperometric biosensor design

Quentin Palomar, Chantal Gondran, Jean-Paul Lellouche, Serge Cosnier, Michael Holzinger

WS2 nanotubes functionalized with carboxylic acid functions (WS2-COOH) were used for improved immobilization of the enzyme tyrosinase in order to form an electrochemical biosensor towards catechol and dopamine. The nanotubes were deposited on glassy carbon electrodes using a dispersion-filtration-transfer procedure to assure the reproducibility of the deposits. After the electrochemical and morphological characterization of these WS2-COOH nanotube deposits, the formed biosensors showed very satisfying performance towards catechol detection with a linear range of 0.6–70 μmol L−1 and a sensitivity of 10.7 ± 0.2 mA L mol−1. The apparent Michaelis Menten constant of this system is slightly lower than the KM value of tyrosinase in solution, reflecting an excellent accessibility of the active site of the enzyme combined with a good mass transport of the target molecule through the deposit. For dopamine …

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2020 • Electrochimica Acta

Facile and Scalable Ambient Pressure Chemical Vapor Deposition-Assisted Synthesis of Layered Silver Selenide (β-Ag2Se) on Ag foil as a possible Oxygen Reduction Catalyst in …

Rajashree Konar, Suparna Das, Eti Teblum, Arindam Modak, Ilana Perelshtein, Jonathan J Richter, Alex Schechter, Gilbert Daniel Nessim

Here, we report a facile upscaled ambient pressure CVD-assisted synthesis of low-temperature phase silver selenide (β-Ag2Se) on Ag foil and its first-reported application (in its pristine form) as an ORR catalyst. The exfoliated β-Ag2Se via XRD, EDS, HRTEM, AFM, and HRSEM determines its stoichiometry and its hollow layered fern-like morphology. Differential scanning calorimetry (DSC) further confirms that the final product is the low-temperature phase β-Ag2Se. Electrochemical oxygen reduction reaction (ORR) of exfoliated β-Ag2Se exhibits a strong oxygen reduction current with an onset potential of 0.88 V/RHE under alkaline conditions, indicating the oxygen reduction property of β-Ag2Se. The significant value of limiting current (3 mA cm−2) as well as small Tafel slope (68.5 mV dec−1) substantiates β-Ag2Se as a superior layered transition metal chalcogenide suitable for various energy-related applications …

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2020 • Chemistry Education for a Sustainable Society Volume 1: High School …, 2020

A Holistic Approach to Incorporating Sustainability into Chemistry Education in Israel

Yael Shwartz, Emil Eidin, Debora Marchak, Miri Kesner, Neta Avraham Green, Eldad Marom, David Cahen, Avi Hofstein, Yehudit Judy Dori

Incorporating sustainability into chemistry education in Israel has been an ongoing endeavor for the last 25 years. In this chapter we introduce development, implementation, and research of six different educational initiatives: (1) Incorporating Industrial Chemistry into the teaching and learning of high school chemistry curriculum; (2) National Projects competition: "We have Chemistry: Chemistry, Industry, and the Environment in the Eyes of the Individual and Society"; (3) Promoting higher-order thinking skills using context-based Green Chemistry; (4) Professional Development for teachers: Focusing on sustainability: Materials for Energy (5) Professional Development for teachers: Supporting teachers in teaching socio-scientific issues, and finally; (6) Sustainable Chemistry for tertiary education: Research-based design of an interdisciplinary environmental science course. These initiatives span all levels of chemistry …

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2020 • Chemical Communications

A low-loading Ru-rich anode catalyst for high-power anion exchange membrane fuel cells

Zhanna Tatus-Portnoy, Anna Kitayev, Thazhe Veettil Vineesh, Ervin Tal-Gutelmacher, Miles Page, David Zitoun

Herein, we report a Ru-rich anode catalyst for alkaline exchange membrane fuel cells. The fuel cell with such a RuPdIr/C anode and Ag-based cathode attained a peak power density close to 1 W cm−2 with only 0.2 mg cm−2 anode precious group metal loading, reaching the highest mass activity reported for this technology.

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Dec 2019 • Nanomaterials

Optical Polarization Sensitive Ultra-Fast Switching and Photo-Electrical Device

Jérémy Belhassen, Zeev Zalevsky, Avi Karsenty

Ultra-fast electrical switches activated with an optical-polarized light trigger, also called photo-polarized activated electrical switches, are presented. A set of new transistor circuits is switched by light from above, illuminating deep V-grooves, whose angle is sensitive to the polarization of the incident. Thus, this application may serve for encryption/decryption devices since the strongest electrical responsivity is only obtained for very specific spatial polarization directions of the illumination beam. When this V-groove is sufficiently narrow, the device mainly responds to one polarization and not to the other. In such a way, electrons are generated only for one specific polarization. While the nature of the data remains electronic, the modulation control is optic, creating a photo-induced current depending on the polarization direction. This coupled device acts as a polarization modulator as well as an intensity modulator. The article focuses on the integration of several devices in different configurations of circuitry: dual, triple, and multi-element. Case studies of several adjacent devices are presented with varying critical variables, such as the V-groove aperture dimensions. Analytical models and complementary numerical analyses are presented for the future smooth integration into Complementary Metal-Oxide-Semiconductor (CMOS) technology. View Full-Text

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