A Janus particle is composed of two fused parts, two-faced, like the Roman god Janus of doorways who is usually depicted with his faces looking in opposite directions. These asymmetric particles have two distinctly different sides, i.e. each face made from a different surface chemistry, or substance, than the other one.
This janus particle, named after the roman god with two faces, are spherical and have two very different sides; one hydrophilic and one hydrophobic. This conflicted relationship with water comes into play when attaching therapies. The two distinct sides can hold different agents.
Janus particles have been of great improvement for cancer treatment. These janus particles can guide drugs directly to tumors, increasing effectiveness and reducing side effects.
As said by Dr. Jeffrey Smith “These particles give us a lot of versatility, it can have a therapy on one side and a imaging agent on the other.”
As said before janus particles can be a great advance in cancer treatment. As for example, clinicians could create particles with chemically different treatments on each face, allowing them to combine treatments that normally could not be combined. In addition, some treatments known for their toxicity are significantly less toxic when delivered by nanoparticles. Dr. Smith is also creating particles with a treatment on one side and a gene or piece of RNA on the other. The genetic material would make the cancer cell more vulnerable to the treatment.
In the future Dr. Smith will like to make particles with multiple faces, allowing him to create a nano-cocktail to attack cancer.
- Steve Granick, Shan Jiang, and Qian Chen; Janus particles. Physics today. July2009, p.68-69.http://web.mit.edu/sjiang2/www/Publications/Jiang_2009_PhyToday_Janus%20particles.pdf
- nited Press International; two-faced janus nanoparticles. September 27,2005.http://www.physorg.com/news6811.html