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The use of ammonium sulfate protein purification

Views: 2     Author: Site Editor     Publish Time: 2024-05-16      Origin: Site


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The application of ammonium sulfate in protein purification


Proteins are the fundamental substances of life activities, and their diversity in structure and function determines their importance in biomedicine, molecular biology research, and industrial production. The separation and purification of proteins are crucial steps in the field of biotechnology, and ammonium sulfate, as a commonly used protein precipitant, plays an important role in the protein purification process.


1. The importance of protein purification


Protein purification is a prerequisite for ensuring the accuracy of protein research and application. Purified proteins can be used for:


Structural analysis, such as X-ray crystallography, nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR), etc.


Functional research, such as enzyme kinetics, binding characteristics, etc.


Drug development: as a drug target or drug itself.


Industrial applications: such as catalysts, food additives, etc.


2. The role of ammonium sulfate in protein purification


Ammonium sulfate (NH4) 2SO4) is a cost-effective inorganic salt, and its application in protein purification is mainly based on its ability to induce protein precipitation.


2.1 Salt precipitation


Ammonium sulfate increases the ion strength of the solution, reduces the repulsive force between protein molecules, and promotes the aggregation and precipitation of protein molecules. This method is called "salt precipitation".


2.2 Selective precipitation


The solubility of different proteins varies at different concentrations of ammonium sulfate, which allows for selective precipitation of target proteins by gradually increasing the concentration of ammonium sulfate.


2.3 Protecting protein activity


Ammonium sulfate is considered an inert substance that is less prone to non-specific reactions with proteins, helping to protect the natural structure and function of proteins.


3. Steps of ammonium sulfate purification process


3.1 Cell fragmentation


Firstly, it is necessary to break down cells and release intracellular proteins through physical or chemical methods.


3.2 Preliminary screening and sedimentation


Add ammonium sulfate to a certain concentration to precipitate most of the protein and remove impurities.


3.3 Re screening precipitation


Gradually increase the concentration of ammonium sulfate and precipitate the target protein.


3.4 Resuspension and washing


Resuspend the precipitated protein in buffer and wash to remove residual impurities.


3.5 Further purification


If necessary, the protein may also need to be further purified by ion exchange chromatography, gel filtration chromatography or affinity chromatography.


4. Advantages and disadvantages of ammonium sulfate purification




Cost effectiveness: Ammonium sulfate is inexpensive and suitable for large-scale applications.

Easy to operate: The sedimentation process is simple and does not require complex equipment.

Protective activity: has minimal impact on the natural structure and function of proteins.




Limited resolution: It is difficult to distinguish proteins with similar properties.

Possible impurities: Ammonium sulfate itself may introduce impurities, which need to be removed in subsequent steps.


5.Future trends in ammonium sulfate purification


With the deepening of protein research, the requirements for protein purification technology are also constantly increasing. The purification of ammonium sulfate in the future may be combined with more modern technologies, such as:


High resolution chromatography technology: improves purification resolution and distinguishes more proteins.


Automation and miniaturization: improving operational efficiency and accuracy.


Green chemistry: reducing chemical consumption and environmental pollution.




Ammonium sulfate, as a traditional protein precipitant, plays an irreplaceable role in the field of protein purification. Its cost-effectiveness, easy operation, and protection of protein activity have made it widely used in protein purification processes. With the development of science and technology, ammonium sulfate purification technology is expected to be combined with modern technology to further improve the effectiveness and efficiency of protein purification, providing stronger support for protein research and application.

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