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Vet Clin Pathol. 2010 Sep;39(3):337-45. doi: 10.1111/j.1939-165X.2010.00241.x. Epub 2010 Aug 18.

Comparison of methods for depletion of albumin and IgG from equine serum.

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  • 1Department of Microbiology, Immunology and Pathology, College of Veterinary Medicine and Biomedical Sciences, Colorado State University, Fort Collins, CO 80523-1691, USA.



Disease-specific biomarkers hold diagnostic promise in both human and veterinary medicine, but serum biomarkers in low concentrations may be masked by the presence of abundant proteins, mostly albumin and IgG. Methods to deplete albumin and IgG exist, but efficacy of these methods for depleting equine serum of these proteins has not been established.


The aim of this study was to determine if albumin and IgG could be depleted from equine serum using several commercially available kits and procedures.


One-dimensional gel electrophoresis followed by densitometry was used to determine percent of albumin, IgG, and both in pooled serum from 3 horses before and after application of 7 depletion methods. Repeatability was determined by applying the 2 best methods to serum samples from 6 grade horses.


For pooled serum, depletion rates varied from 35-90% for albumin and 0-94% for IgG. In the repeatability study, the ProteoExtract method combined with protein G Sepharose beads to remove additional IgG provided the best overall performance with 66% albumin depletion and 100% IgG depletion. A protocol using protein G Sepharose beads to remove IgG followed by ethanol precipitation of nonalbumin proteins with albumin remaining in the supernatant was the second most effective, with 85% albumin depletion and 55% IgG depletion. Although a multiprotein immunodepletion column effectively removed 90% of the albumin, the method was ineffective at removing IgG.


Albumin and IgG removal kits optimized for human use have variable efficacy for equine serum. Combined use of the ProteoExtract kit and manual incubation with protein G Sepharose beads provided the most effective depletion.

©2010 American Society for Veterinary Clinical Pathology.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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