Volume 8 Number 5, September/October 1998, pp. 289-294
Application of Foam Separation Processes for Protein Extraction/Stripping
by Md Monwar Hossain and Glenn Fenton
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The present work examines the foaming characteristics of four well characterised
model proteins, in a semi-batch operation. The critical micelle concentration (CMC) value of
these proteins was determined by surface tension measurements and was found to be
dependent on the physicochemical characteristics of the protein molecule. Protein solutions at
initial concentrations higher than CMC value were sparged with air in the separation column.
The protein concentration in foam was maximum for b-lactoglobulin, followed by bovine serum albumin
(BSA), a-lactalbumin and b-casein. The protein concentration in the residual solution was
minimum for BSA, followed by a-lactalbumin, b-casein and b-lactoglobulin.
Separation of BSA was carried out both in semi-batch and continuous operation mode. It was
shown that higher enrichment (about twice that of semi-batch) is achievable if the process is
operated continuously. There was also slight enhancement in protein recovery with continuous
Copyright 1998 Australian Biotechnology Association Ltd.