Andrew Zydney

Penn State University, Chemical Engineering




CEB 218 , 810 S. Clinton Street


There is growing interest in using DNA for gene therapy and DNA-based vaccines. Existing methods for DNA purification are inadequate for large-scale commercial production. This talk examines the possibility of using membrane ultrafiltration for the purification of supercoiled plasmid DNA. DNA transmission during ultrafiltration is a strong function of filtrate flux due to flow-induced elongation of the plasmid associated with the converging flow into the membrane pores. Transmission of the open circular DNA was significantly less than that of the supercoiled plasmid, while transmission of the linear DNA was considerably enhanced due to differences in conformational flexibility. New opportunities for enhancing DNA purification were identified using membranes with controlled pore morphology to pre-stretch the DNA in the elongation flow. The results clearly demonstrate the potential of using membrane systems for commercial-scale purification of DNA.

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