Extraction of High-Value Minor Proteins from Milk
Thesis DisciplineChemical Engineering
Degree GrantorUniversity of Canterbury
Degree NameDoctor of Philosophy
Various methods for extraction and analysis of high value minor proteins (lactoferrin, lactoperoxidase and immunoglobulins) directly from raw milk were explored. Extraction, purification and analysis of high-value minor proteins directly from milk without pre-treatment are major challenges for dairy industry, largely due to the complexity of milk and the presence of colloidal solids (casein micelles and milk fat globules). To overcome some of these challenges, this work focused on three main objectives: 1) characterization of cryogel monolith chromatography for purification of lactoferrin (LF) and lactoperoxidase (LP) directly from raw milk in single step, 2) identification and characterization of Protein A Mimetic affinity ligands for purification of immunoglobulins (Igs) from milk and 3) development and validation of a surface plasmon resonance method for simultaneous quantification of five whey proteins in multiple samples.
Results portrayed the possibility of 40–50 column volumes of various milk samples (whole milk, skim milk and acid whey) to pass through a 5 mL cryogel monolith chromatography column at 525 cm hr⁻¹ without exceeding its pressure limits if the processing temperature is maintained around 35–37°C. Ideally, this should be the milk secretion temperature. The dynamic binding capacity obtained for the cryogel matrix (2.1 mg mL⁻¹) was similar to that of the binding capacity (2.01 mg mL⁻¹) at equilibrium with 0.1 mg mL⁻¹ of lactoferrin in the feed samples. Lactoferrin and lactoperoxidase was selectively bound to the cryogel column with trivial leakage in flowthrough fractions. Lactoferrin was recovered from elution fractions with a yield of 85% and a purity of 90%. These results, together with the ease of manufacture, low cost and versatile surface chemistry of cryogels suggest that they may be a good alternative to packed-bed chromatography for direct capture of proteins from milk, provided that the binding capacity can be increased.
A Protein A Mimetic (PAM) hexapeptide (HWRGWV) peptide ligand that binds to the Fc portion of antibody molecules was explored for affinity purification of immunoglobulins from milk. The peptide has the ability to purify IgG from various milk and whey samples with a purity of greater than 85% in single step. More than 90% bound IgG was recovered with 0.2 M acetate buffer at pH 4.0 and total column regeneration was successfully achieved by 2.0 M guanidine-HCl. At 9.0 mg mL⁻¹ of IgG feed concentration, an equilibrium binding capacity of 21.7 mg mL⁻¹ and dynamic binding capacity of approximately 12.0 mg mL⁻¹ of resin was obtained. Recoveries and yields of IgG were significantly influenced by the feed IgG concentration. PAM hexamer ligand also contributed a significant amount of cross-reactivity with casein, glycomacropeptides and β-lactoglobulin proteins, however majority of these proteins were recovered in the regeneration step, except β-lactoglobulin, which co-eluted with IgG. Higher IgG concentration in feed vastly reduced the amount of cross-reactivity whilst increasing the recoveries and purities in the final product. PAM affinity ligands also showed interactions towards other classes of bovine immunoglobulins. These findings established the possibility of using PAM hexamer peptide as an alternative to conventional Protein A/G affinity chromatography for the isolation of Igs from milk in single step process.
A surface plasmon resonance (SPR) method was developed for simultaneous, quantitative determination of commercially important whey proteins in raw and processed milk samples, whey fractions and various milk-derived products, with six samples per assay. Immobilized antibody stability and reproducibility of analyses were studied over time for 25 independent runs (n=300), giving a relative standard deviation (RSD) of <4%. Immobilized antibodies showed negligible non-specific interactions (<2–4 SPR response units (RU)) and no cross-reactivity towards other milk components (<1 RU). Regeneration of immobilised antibodies with glycine at pH 1.75 was determined to be optimal for maintaining the SPR response between samples. This method compared and validated well with reversed phase high performance liquid chromatography (RP-HPLC) and standard enzyme-linked immunosorbent assays (ELISA).
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