Purification of DNA for Gene Therapy and Vaccines - New Opportunities for Membrane Technology

Event Date: February 9, 2016
Speaker: Dr. Andrew Zydney
Speaker Affiliation: Penn State University
Time: 3:00 - 4:15 pm
Location: FRNY G140
Priority: No
School or Program: Chemical Engineering
College Calendar: Show

Abstract: 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. The results clearly demonstrate the potential of using membrane systems for commercial-scale purification of DNA.

Bio: Dr. Andrew L. Zydney is currently Distinguished Professor of Chemical Engineering at The Pennsylvania State University, having served as Head of that Department from 2004-2014.  Professor Zydney received his Ph.D. in Chemical Engineering from M.I.T. in 1985, and he was a faculty member in the Chemical Engineering Department at the University of Delaware from 1985 – 2001. Professor Zydney's research is focused on membrane science and technology, with a particular emphasis on bioseparations and the purification of high value biological products. He has published more than 170 articles on these topics, including invited contributions to the Encyclopedia of Bioprocess Technology and the Handbook of Biomedical Engineering. Professor Zydney is the Editor-in-Chief of the Journal of Membrane Science, and he serves on the Editorial Boards for Separation and Purification Reviews, Separation Science and Technology, Journal of Colloid and Interface Science, and Biotechnology and Bioengineering. He served as President of the North American Membrane Society in 2002 - 2003, and was a member of the Board of Directors for 9 years. He was elected a fellow of the American Institute of Medical and Biological Engineers in 1998 and of the American Institute of Chemical Engineers in 2011. Dr. Zydney has received Excellence in Teaching Awards from the University of Delaware and the Penn State Engineering Alumni Society, and he is a past recipient of the Distinguished Teacher Award and the Outstanding Young Faculty Award from the American Society of Engineering Education.