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    Polydopamine (PDA) shows great application potential in photothermal therapy (PTT) of tumors due to its excellent photothermal performance. However, PDA rich in a large number of catechin structures, with strong adhesion, can readily attach to plasma proteins in blood to form protein corona, which greatly hinders the transfer efficiency to tumors and reduces the bioavailability. In this paper, a simple, rapid phase-transitioned albumin biomimetic nanocorona (TBSA) is used for the surface camouflage of PDA nanoparticles for minimal plasma protein fouling and efficient PTT. TBSA coating is formed by the BSA-derived amyloid through the hydrophobic aggregation near the isoelectric point and the rupture of disulfide bonds by tris(2-carboxyethyl) phosphine. The stable PDA@TBSA complexes are formed by camouflaging TBSA onto the surface of PDA through hydrophobic, electrostatic, and covalent binding between TBSA and PDA, which showed excellent anti-plasma protein adsorption properties profited from the surface charge of PDA@TBSA approaching equilibrium and the surface passivation of BSA. The plasma protein thickness of the PDA@TBSA surface is 6 times lower than that of PDA at adsorption saturation. In vitro and in vivo experiments have revealed that PDA@TBSA has an excellent photothermal antitumor effect compared to PDA. Both PDA and PDA@TBSA treatment plus 808 nm laser irradiation result in more than 70% inhibition on tumor cell proliferation. In addition, PDA@TBSA does not cause a significant inflammatory response and tissue damage. Taken together, the TBSA coating endows PDA with low-fouling functions in blood and improves the residence time of PDA in blood and enrichment in the tumor tissue. This work offers a novel and efficient strategy for the design of functional nanosystems exploiting the speciality of the biomolecular corona formation around nanomaterials.


    Miaomiao Han, Yan Li, Shun Lu, Biao Yuan, Shujie Cheng, Chongjiang Cao. Amyloid Protein-Biofunctionalized Polydopamine Nanoparticles Demonstrate Minimal Plasma Protein Fouling and Efficient Photothermal Therapy. ACS applied materials & interfaces. 2022 Mar 23;14(11):13743-13757

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    PMID: 35263991

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