Improved High-Density Functionality of Polymer Surfaces (2015-044)

Market Overview:

This easy modification creates polymer surfaces with high-density functionality by using polyethylene terephthalate (PET) capillary-channeled polymer (C-CP fibers) as the support material. The low-cost modification provides the capability for fast protein separations for proteomics applications and downstream processing due to the improved binding capacity. Protein therapeutics is experiencing phenomenal growth and is poised to reach a market value of $1,463 million by 2020. While this market has seen much improvement and growth in the last decade, the development of high efficiency, low-cost stationary phases for protein separation continues to be an area of interest and opportunity. There are many forms of support phases employed in downstream processing, but the more conventional materials are lacking in inherent production throughput. Clemson University researchers have developed a modification by implementing a serial, polymer cross-linking procedure and polymerization to create PET C-CP fiber surfaces with higher functionality and binding capacity while maintaining efficient hydrodynamics.


Application                                                                             Stage of Development

Chromatography; Protein Therapeutics;                                  Preliminary Prototype       

Proteomics; Bioprocessing



• Utilizes PET C-CP fibers treated with simple reactants, improving binding capacity and chemical versatility

• Does not inhibit mass transfer kinetics, allowing for separations at the high linear velocity (~100 mm s-1)


Technical Summary

This modification has potential for high-throughput analytical protein separations and downstream processing. The PET C-CP fibers are treated in a relatively straightforward manner with polyethylenimine (PEI) to generate polyaminelayers on the fiber surfaces. 1,4-Butanedioldiglycidyl ether (BUDGE) is then used to cross-link the PEI on the fiber surfaces and further increase the PEI density. Multiple enhancements of chemical versatility and higher binding capacity. The polymer PEI-BUDGE layer also does not inhibit the mass transfer kinetics of C-CP fiber phases, allowing for separations at the high linear velocity without compromise to chromatographic quality. The high column permeability and low cost of C-CP fiber chromatography columns makes a promising choice for fast protein separations across various scales.


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Inventors:                        Richard Kenneth Marcus, Liuwei Jiang


Application Type:            Utility, Provisional


Serial Number:                62/131,431; 15/067,339


CURF Reference:            2015-044

Patent Information:
Advanced Materials
For Information, Contact:
Chris Gesswein
Director of Licensing
Clemson University Research Foundation
Richard Kenneth Marcus
Liuwei Jiang
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