GOALI: High-Affinity Supramolecular Peptide Materials for Selective Capture and Recovery of Proteins
This project is an integrated experimental-computational approach that aims to develop a class of peptide-based supramolecular materials as high-affinity precipitants for non-chromatographic protein purification. The separation and purification of therapeutic proteins from their biological resources are significant limitations for industrial manufacturing of biologics in terms of their efficiency and cost-effectiveness. Despite the high media cost and limited loading capacity, affinity chromatography remains the most widely used capture method for large-scale industrial protein purification. The rapid growth of upstream titers, due to advancements in mammalian cell culture and continuous process development, has further challenged the efficiency of downstream manufacturing. Affinity precipitation can potentially overcome the chromatography limitations associated with column size and ligand immobilization. In line with the goals of the Materials Genome Initiative (MGI), this project will design, synthesize, and develop self-assembling peptide materials that can specifically bind, selectively capture, and effectively separate proteins from their bio-based resources. In addition, this project will foster new educational and outreach opportunities for students at all levels to participate in STEM research and to experience different laboratory settings that range across academia and industry.