Retention and Fouling during Nanoparticle Filtration: Implications for Membrane Purification of Biotherapeutics

Liang Kai Chu, S. Ranil Wickramasinghe, Xianghong Qian, Andrew L. Zydney

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

3 Scopus citations


One major challenge in the development of nanoparticle-based therapeutics, including viral vectors for the delivery of gene therapies, is the development of cost-effective purification technologies. The objective of this study was to examine fouling and retention behaviors during the filtration of model nanoparticles through membranes of different pore sizes and the effect of solution conditions. Data were obtained with 30 nm fluorescently labeled polystyrene latex nanoparticles using both cellulosic and polyethersulfone membranes at a constant filtrate flux, and both pressure and nanoparticle transmission were evaluated as a function of cumulative filtrate volume. The addition of NaCl caused a delay in nanoparticle transmission and an increase in fouling. Nanoparticle transmission was also a function of particle hydrophobicity. These results provide important insights into the factors controlling transmission and fouling during nanoparticle filtration as well as a framework for the development of membrane processes for the purification of nanoparticle-based therapeutics.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number299
Issue number3
StatePublished - Mar 2022

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Chemical Engineering (miscellaneous)
  • Process Chemistry and Technology
  • Filtration and Separation


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