High resolution protein separations using affinity ultrafiltration with small charged ligands

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Although the feasibility of affinity ultrafiltration was demonstrated more than 20 years ago, commercial applications have not developed due to the high cost and practical limitations of the large macroligands needed for highly selective separations. The objective of this study was to examine the use of small charged affinity ligands for protein purification by exploiting electrostatic interactions between the charged complex and an electrically-charged membrane. Experiments were performed using bovine serum albumin and ovalbumin with Cibacron Blue as the affinity ligand. Negatively charged versions of a composite regenerated cellulose membrane were generated by covalent attachment of a sulfonic acid functionality. Binding experiments were used to identify appropriate conditions for protein separations. The selectivity for the separation of BSA and ovalbumin was a function of the solution conditions, Cibacron Blue concentration, and membrane charge, with the addition of Cibacron Blue causing a 30-fold increase in selectivity. A diafiltration process was performed at the optimal conditions, giving a BSA product with a purification factor of more than 90-fold and a yield greater than 90%. These results clearly demonstrate the potential of using a small charged affinity ligand for high resolution protein separations.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)781-789
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Membrane Science
Issue number1-2
StatePublished - Sep 1 2006

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Biochemistry
  • General Materials Science
  • Physical and Theoretical Chemistry
  • Filtration and Separation


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