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Cytochrome c is a small water-soluble protein that is abundantly found in the mitochondrial intermembrane space of microorganism, plants and mammalians. Ionic liquids (ILs)-based aqueous two-phase electrophoresis system (ATPES) was introduced in this study to investigate the partition efficiency of cytochrome c to facilitate subsequent development of two-phase electrophoresis for the separation of cytochrome c from microbial fermentation. The 1-Hexyl-3-methylimidazolium bromide, (C6mim)Br and potassium citrate salt were selected as the phase-forming components. Effects of phase composition; position of electrodes; pH and addition of neutral salt on the partition efficiency of cytochrome c in the ATPES were evaluated. Highest partition coefficient (K = 179.12 ± 0.82) and yield of cytochrome c in top phase (YT = 99.63% ± 0.00) were recorded with IL/salt ATPES composed of 30% (w/w) (C6mim)Br and 20% (w/w) potassium citrate salt of pH 7 and 3.0% (w/w) NaCl addition with anode at the bottom phase and cathode at the top phase. The SDS-PAGE profile revealed that cytochrome c with a molecular weight of 12 kDa was preferably partitioned to the IL-rich top phase. Present findings suggested that the single-step ATPES is a potential separation approach for the recovery of cytochrome c from microbial fermentation. Graphical Abstract.


Phei Er Kee, John Chi-Wei Lan, Hip Seng Yim, Joo Shun Tan, Yin Hui Chow, Hui-Suan Ng. Efficiency of Ionic Liquids-Based Aqueous Two-phase Electrophoresis for Partition of Cytochrome c. Applied biochemistry and biotechnology. 2020 May;191(1):376-386

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PMID: 31907777

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