Imaging-guided photothermal therapy (PTT) by combination of imaging and PTT has been emerging as a promising therapeutic method for precision therapy. However, the development of multicomponent nanoplatforms with stable structures for both PTT and multiple-model imaging remains a great challenge. Herein, we synthesized monodisperse Au-Fe2C Janus nanoparticles (JNPs) of 12 nm, which are multifunctional entities for cancer theranostics. Due to the broad absorption in the near-infrared range, Au-Fe2C JNPs showed a significant photothermal effect with a 30.2% calculated photothermal transduction efficiency under 808 nm laser irradiation in vitro. Owing to their excellent optical and magnetic properties, Au-Fe2C JNPs were demonstrated to be advantageous agents for triple-modal magnetic resonance imaging (MRI)/multispectral photoacoustic tomography (MSOT)/computed tomography (CT) both in vitro and in vivo. We found that Au-Fe2C JNPs conjugated with the affibody (Au-Fe2C-ZHER2:342) have more accumulation and deeper penetration in tumor sites than nontargeting JNPs (Au-Fe2C-PEG) in vivo. Meanwhile, our results verified that Au-Fe2C-ZHER2:342 JNPs can selectively target tumor cells with low cytotoxicity and ablate tumor tissues effectively in a mouse model. In summary, monodisperse Au-Fe2C JNPs, used as a multifunctional nanoplatform, allow the combination of multiple-model imaging techniques and high therapeutic efficacy and have great potential for precision theranostic nanomedicines.

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