291679 Protein Diffusion Through Oriented Thin Film Silica Membranes

Monday, October 29, 2012
Hall B (Convention Center )
Ashley McClean, Department of Chemical Engineering, University of Kentucky, Louisville, KY

eramic membranes continue to be of interest in research due to their superior stability over organic membranes in a variety of thermal, chemical, and biological conditions. The formation of ceramic nanofiltration membranes through surfactant templating offers more control over pore dimensions and alignment. Here, thin film hexagonal mesoporous silica membranes are synthesized on alumina supports using block copolymer templating. Orthogonal pores are achieved by sandwiching membranes between modified, chemically neutral glass slides. Membrane permeability is assessed through ethanol flux testing. Utility of these membranes in separating proteins by size exclusion is examined using bovine serum albumin (BSA).  The permeability of fungal cellulase enzyme from Trichoderma reesei was also observed by quantifying the amount of enzyme that diffused through the membranes over time. Work to characterize the fraction and size of cellulase material that passes through these membranes is recommended. Activity is used to quantify this fraction and preliminary results are reported.

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