Ionic Liquids in Bioseparation Processes


Bioseparation processes are a relevant part of modern biotechnology, particularly regarding the development of efficient and biocompatible methods for the separation and purification of added-value biologically active compounds. In this field, ionic liquids (ILs) have been proposed, either in liquid–liquid extractions, in which non-water miscible ILs or aqueous biphasic systems (ABS) formed by ILs can be used, or in solid–liquid extractions, in which they are covalently attached to create supported IL phases (SILPs). Aprotic ILs possess unique properties, such as non-volatility and designability, which are valuable in their use in bioseparation processes. In this chapter, we summarize and discuss bioseparation processes based on ILs, including both liquid–liquid and solid–liquid extractions, applied to amino acids and proteins. The most recent and remarkable advances in this area are emphasized, and improvements brought by the use of ILs properly discussed. New insights and envisaged directions with IL-based bioseparation processes are suggested.


Belchior D.C.V., Duarte I.F., Freire M.G.

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