Magnetic nanoparticles for direct protein sorting inside live cells

Yue Pan, Marcus J.C. Long, Hsin-Chieh Lin, Lizbeth Hedstrom, Bing Xu*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

24 Scopus citations


This work reports the first example of the biofunctional magnetic nanoparticles as a "magnetic dock" for directly sorting proteins inside live cells. We decorate the iron oxide nanoparticles with the ligands that bind selectively to fusion proteins consisting of the proteins of interest (POIs) and the ligand receptors. Similar to protein sorting processes on vesicles, the clusters of these functionalized magnetic nanoparticles only bind to the fusion proteins via the interaction with the receptors, but exhibit little interaction to other proteins. This work demonstrates new applications of magnetic nanoparticles and may ultimately contribute to the exploration of the functions of proteins via the selective, spatiotemporal control of the proteins by a magnetic force.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)3495-3499
Number of pages5
JournalChemical Science
Issue number12
StatePublished - 1 Dec 2012

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