Send to

Choose Destination
Protein Expr Purif. 2006 Jul;48(1):1-13. Epub 2005 Dec 28.

Current strategies for the use of affinity tags and tag removal for the purification of recombinant proteins.

Author information

Unizyme Laboratories A/S, Dr. Neergaards vej 17, DK-2970 Hørsholm, Denmark.


Affinity tags are highly efficient tools for protein purification. They allow the purification of virtually any protein without any prior knowledge of its biochemical properties. The use of affinity tags has therefore become widespread in several areas of research e.g., high throughput expression studies aimed at finding a biological function to large numbers of yet uncharacterized proteins. In some cases, the presence of the affinity tag in the recombinant protein is unwanted or may represent a disadvantage for the projected application of the protein, like for clinical use. Therefore, an increasing number of approaches are available at present that are designed for the removal of the affinity tag from the recombinant protein. Most of these methods employ recombinant endoproteases that recognize a specific sequence. These process enzymes can subsequently be removed from the process by affinity purification, since they also include a tag. Here, a survey of the most common affinity tags and the current methods for tag removal is presented, with special emphasis on the removal of N-terminal histidine tags using TAGZyme, a system based on exopeptidase cleavage. In the quest to reduce the significant costs associated with protein purification at large scale, relevant aspects involved in the development of downstream processes for pharmaceutical protein production that incorporate a tag removal step are also discussed. A comparison of the yield of standard vs. affinity purification together with an example of tag removal using TAGZyme is also included.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

Supplemental Content

Full text links

Icon for Elsevier Science
Loading ...
Support Center