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Secretory immunoglobulin purification from whey by chromatographic techniques

Matlschweiger, A;Engelmaier, H;Himmler, G;Hahn, R;

Secretory immunoglobulins (SIg) are a major fraction of the mucosal immune system and represent potential drug candidates. So far, platform technologies for their purification do not exist. SIg from animal whey was used as a model to develop a simple, efficient and potentially generic chromatographic purification process. Several chromatographic stationary phases were tested. A combination of two anion-exchange steps resulted in the highest purity. The key step was the use of a small-porous anion exchanger operated in flow-through mode. Diffusion of SIg into the resin particles was significantly hindered, while the main impurities, IgG and serum albumin, were bound. In this step, initial purity was increased from 66% to 89% with a step yield of 88%. In a second anion-exchange step using giga-porous material, SIg was captured and purified by step or linear gradient elution to obtain fractions with purities > 95%. For the step gradient elution step yield of highly pure SIg was 54%. Elution of SIgA and SIgM with a linear gradient resulted in a step yield of 56% and 35%, respectively. Overall yields for both anion exchange steps were 43% for the combination of flow-through and step elution mode. Combination of flow-through and linear gradient elution mode resulted in a yield of 44% for SIgA and 39% for SIgM. The proposed process allows the purification of biologically active SIg from animal whey in preparative scale. For future applications, the process can easily be adopted for purification of recombinant secretory immunoglobulin species.