Concentration

Industrial concentration methods, such as evaporation and solvent extraction, are unsuitable for dewatering enzymes because of their potential for thermal or chemical denaturation, and evaporation gives rise to high energy costs. Chromatography is generally uneconomical for concentrating feed enzymes, for reasons detailed below. The most common concentration technique in use today for industrial enzymes is ultrafiltration (UF), using hydrophilic tangential flow membranes with molecular weight cutoffs in the range of 10,000-100,000 Da. UF fluxes and yields are often significantly enhanced by removal — or omission — upstream of potential membrane foulants such as certain polysaccharides or anti-foams. Precipitation, crystallization and extraction can also be used for concentration, but are more typically utilized as purification techniques, and therefore will be discussed below.

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