Asymmetric functionality and directional interactions, which are characteristic of noncentrosymmetric particles, such as Janus particles, present an opportunity to encode particles with properties, but also a great synthetic challenge. Here, we exploit the chemical anisotropy of proteins, and the versatile chemistry of DNA to synthesize a protein-based Janus nanoparticle comprised of two proteins encoded with sequence-specific nucleic acid domains, tethered together by an interprotein "DNA bond". We use these novel nanoparticles to realize a new class of three-dimensional superlattice, only possible when two sides of the particle are modified with orthogonal oligonucleotide sequences. The low symmetry, intrinsic to Janus particles, enables the realization of unprecedented multicomponent nanoparticle superlattices with unique, hexagonal layered architectures. In addition, the interprotein "DNA bond" can be modulated to selectively expand the lattice in a single direction. The results presented herein not only emphasize the power of rationally designing nanoscale building blocks to create highly engineered colloidal crystals, but also establish a precedent for applications of multidomain DNA-encoded nanoparticles, especially in the field of colloidal crystallization.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Colloid and Surface Chemistry