Biofunctional Janus particles promote phagocytosis of tumor cells by macrophages†
Herein, a versatile strategy for the construction of biofunctional Janus particles (JPs) through the combination of Pickering emulsion and copper-free click chemistry is developed for the study of particle-mediated cell–cell interactions. A variety of biomolecules including bovine serum albumin (BSA), ferritin, transferrin (Tf), and anti-signal regulatory protein alpha antibodies (aSIRPα), etc., can be incorporated into the Janus platform in a spatially defined manner. JPs consisting of Tf and aSIRPα (Tf–SPA1–aSIRPα JPs) demonstrate a significantly improved binding affinity to either macrophages or tumor cells compared to their uniformly modified counterparts. More importantly, Tf–SPA1–aSIRPα JPs mediate more efficient phagocytosis of tumor cells by macrophages as revealed by real-time high-content confocal microscopy. This study demonstrates the potential advantages of JPs in mediating cell–cell interactions and may contribute to the emerging cancer immunotherapy.