Particle-loaded hollow-fiber membrane adsorbers for lysozyme separation

M.E. Avramescu, Z. Borneman, M. Wessling

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The separation of lysozyme (LZ), a valuable enzyme naturally present in chicken egg white, was carried out using a new type of ion exchange hollow-fiber membranes. Functionalities were incorporated into the polymeric membranes by dispersing ion-exchange resins (IERs) in a microporous structure formed by phase inversion. The obtained hollow-fibers were composed of ion-exchange particles surrounded by a polymeric matrix and possessed both high static and dynamic adsorption capacities of more than 60 mg/ml membrane. The hollow-fiber membrane adsorbers were connected in series with different numbers of fibers thereby increasing the effective thickness and the protein residence time within the module. By choosing appropriate operation conditions, the membranes adsorbed solely LZ from fresh chicken egg white (eventually also the minor component avidin), whereas the adsorption of ovalbumin, ovotransferrin, and other low isoelectric point proteins was negligible. An average separation factor for LZ of about 150 was calculated by numerical integration of the protein concentrations in the elution curve during the filtration run. The effect of the filtration flow rate, protein concentration and ionic strength on the membrane's performance was investigated to determine the optimum operation parameters.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)306-313
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Membrane Science
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 15 Sept 2008
Externally publishedYes


  • Egg white
  • Ion-exchange particles
  • Lysozyme (LZ)
  • Membrane adsorbers
  • Mixed matrix membrane
  • Protein separation


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