Among many different types of fabricated nanoparticles, magnetic iron oxide nanoparticles (MNPs) have unique physical and chemical properties and have been widely used due to theirs enhanced permeability and retention effect for biomedical applications. The incorporated theranostic MNPs into biopolymer coatings are currently particular interest to investigators in the fields of nanobiomedicine because of efficiently delivering of various drugs, genes and providing imaging properties. Hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) is the most prevalent reason of cancer-related deaths, makes it one of the worst malignant tumors in the world. Because, there is a lack of effective treatment methods for HCC, aforementioned magnetic carrier technology with recent innovations could be a promising tool in HCC diagnosis and treatment. Therefore, this study proposes a novel fatty-acid-based polymeric magnetic nanoprobe for diagnosis of hepatocellular tumors using polyethylene glycol (PEG)-terminated polystyrene (PS)-linoleic copolymer coated magnetic iron oxide nanoparticles. MNPs were synthesized by a co-precipitation method and were subsequently coated with a copolymer containing PEG group as termini. Fifty-nanometer-sized MNPs were incorporated into the core of PLinaS-g-PEG nanoparticles. The morphology and size distribution of the bare and magnetic PLinaS-g-PEG were determined by transmission electron microscopy (TEM), and dynamic light scattering (DLS), respectively. MTT and flow cytometry assays showed that PLinaS-g-PEG MNPs demonstrated ultrasentive apoptotic behavior against cancerous cell line, i.e. HepG2 in the culture plate when the fatty acid-containing polymer coated MNPs showed no adverse effect on L929 cell growth. The localization, and accumulation in hepatocytes of PLinaS-g-PEG MNPs without specific targeting ligand was confirmed by fluorescence and confocal microscopy. Therefore, PLinaS-g-PEG MNPs may be potentially used as a unique candidate for diagnosis of hepatocellular carcinomas.