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Photosensitive Polymeric Janus Micromotor for Enzymatic Activity Protection and Enhanced Substrate Degradation

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posted on 03.01.2022, 07:29 by Pedro Mena-Giraldo, Jahir Orozco
Immobilizing enzymes into microcarriers is a strategy to improve their long-term stability and reusability, hindered by (UV) light irradiation. However, in such approaches, enzyme–substrate interaction is mediated by diffusion, often at slow kinetics. In contrast, enzyme-linked self-propelled motors can accelerate this interaction, frequently mediated by the convection mechanism. This work reports on a new photosensitive polymeric Janus micromotor (JM) for UV-light protection of enzymatic activity and efficient degradation of substrates accelerated by the JMs. The JMs were assembled with UV-photosensitive modified chitosan, co-encapsulating fluorescent-labeled proteins and enzymes as models and magnetite and platinum nanoparticles for magnetic and catalytic motion. The JMs absorbed UV light, protecting the enzymatic activity and accelerating the enzyme–substrate degradation by magnetic/catalytic motion. Immobilizing proteins in photosensitive JMs is a promising strategy to improve the enzyme’s stability and hasten the kinetics of substrate degradation, thereby enhancing the enzymatic process’s efficiency.