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J Chromatogr A. 2007 Apr 6;1146(2):202-15. Epub 2007 Feb 17.

Protein adsorption and transport in agarose and dextran-grafted agarose media for ion exchange chromatography.

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Department of Chemical Engineering, University of Virginia, 102 Engineers' Way, Charlottesville, VA 22904-4741, USA.


This work examines the relationship between the physical properties of agarose and dextran-grafted agarose cation exchangers and protein adsorption equilibrium and rates. Four different sulfopropyl (SP) matrices were synthesized using a neutral agarose base material--two based on a short ligand chemistry and two obtained by grafting 10 and 40kDa dextran polymers. The pore accessibility, determined by inverse size exclusion chromatography (iSEC) with dextran probes, decreases dramatically as a result of the combined effects of crosslinking, dextran grafting, and the introduction of ionic ligands, with pore radii decreasing from 19nm for the base matrix to 6.1nm for the 40kDa dextran-grafted SP-matrix. In spite of this reduction, while the adsorption isotherms were similar, protein uptake rates were greatly increased with the dextran-grafted SP-matrices, compared to SP-matrices based on the short ligand chemistry. The effective pore diffusivities were 4-10 times higher than free solution diffusivity for the dextran-grafted matrices, indicating that the charged dextran grafts result in enhanced protein mass transfer rates.

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