Asymmetric flow field-flow fractionation is a valuable tool for the characterization of protein aggregates in biotechnology owing to its broad size range and unique separation principle. However, in practice asymmetric flow field-flow fractionation is non-trivial to use due to the major deviations from theory and the influence on separation by various factors that are not fully understood.

Here, we report methods to assess the non-ideal effects that influence asymmetric flow field-flow fractionation separation and for the first time identify experimentally the main factors that impact it. Furthermore, we propose new approaches to minimize such non-ideal behavior, showing that by adjusting the mobile phase composition (pH and ionic strength) the resolution of asymmetric flow field-flow fractionation separation can be drastically improved. Additionally, we propose a best practice method for new proteins.

Atanas Koulov, Ph.D Senior Director, Analytical Development & QC

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