Rupture of Lipid Membranes Induced by Amphiphilic Janus Nanoparticles

The surface coatings of nanoparticles determine their interaction with biomembranes, but studies have been limited almost exclusively to nanoparticles with a uniform surface chemistry. Although nanoparticles are increasingly made with complex surface chemistries to achieve multi-functionalities, our understanding of how a heterogeneous surface coating affects particle-biomembrane interaction has been lagging far behind. Here we report an investigation of this question in an experimental system consisting of amphiphilic “two- faced” Janus nanoparticles and supported lipid membranes. We show that amphiphilic Janus nanoparticles at picomolar concentrations induce defects in zwitterionic lipid bilayers. In addition to revealing the various effects of hydrophobicity and charge in particle-bilayer interactions, we demonstrate that the Janus geometry – the spatial segregation of hydrophobicity and charges on particle surface – renders nanoparticles to bind more strongly to bilayers and induce defects more effectively than particles with uniformly mixed surface functionalities. We combine experiments with computational simulation to further elucidate how amphiphilic Janus nanoparticles extract lipids to rupture intact lipid bilayers. This study provides direct evidence that the spatial arrangement of surface functionalities on a nanoparticle, rather than just its overall surface chemistry, plays a crucial role in determining how it interacts with biological membranes.

Publication Date:
Apr 04 2018
Date Submitted:
Jul 10 2019
ACS Nano

Note: The status of this file is: public

 Record created 2019-07-10, last modified 2019-07-11

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