An insight into the mechanism of protein separation by colloidal gas aphrons (CGA) generated from ionic surfactants
Fuda, E. and Jauregi, P. (2005) An insight into the mechanism of protein separation by colloidal gas aphrons (CGA) generated from ionic surfactants. Journal of Chromatography B-Analytical Technologies in the Biomedical and Life Sciences, 843 (2). pp. 317-326. ISSN 1570-0232
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To link to this article DOI: 10.1016/j.jchromb.2006.06.032
Colloidal gas aphrons (CGA), which are surfactant stabilised microbubbles, have been previously applied for the recovery of proteins from model mixtures and a few studies have demonstrated the potential of these dispersions for the selective recovery of proteins from complex mixtures. However there is a lack of understanding of the mechanism of separation and forces governing the selectivity of the separation. In this paper a mechanistic study is carried out to determine the main factors and forces influencing the selectivity of separation of whey proteins with CGA generated from ionic surfactants. Two different separation strategies were followed: (i) separation of lactoferrin and lactoperoxidase by anionic CGA generated from a solution of sodium bis-(2-ethyl hexyl) sulfosuccinate (AOT); (ii) separation of beta-lactoglobulin by cationic CGA generated from a solution of cetyltrimethylammonium bromide (CTAB). Separation results indicate that electrostatic interactions are the main forces determining the selectivity however these could not completely explain the selectivities obtained following both strategies. Protein-surfactant interactions were studied by measuring the zeta potential changes on individual proteins upon addition of surfactant and at varying pH. Interestingly strongest electrostatic interactions were measured at those pH and surfactant to protein mass ratios which were optimum for protein separation. Effect of surfactant on protein conformation was determined by measuring the change in fluorescence intensity upon addition of surfactant at varying pH. Differences in the fluorescence patterns were detected among proteins which were correlated to differences in their conformational features which could in turn explain their different separation behaviour. The effect of conformation on selectivity was further proven by experiments in which conformational changes were induced by pre-treatment of whey (heating) and by storage at 4 degrees C. Overall it can be concluded that separation of proteins by ionic CGA is driven mainly by electrostatic interactions however conformational features will finally determine the selectivity of the separation with competitive adsorption having also an effect. (c) 2006 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.