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Protein Dynamics At the Air-Water Interface

Ankit Kanthe

The adsorption of molecules at the air-water interfaces is of crucial concern in the development of an antibody-based pharmaceutical process. Air-water interfaces are created through surface turbulence induced by mechanical stresses, for example stress due to shaking. When the antibody comes in contact with a freshly created air- water interface, hydrophobic residues direct into the gas phase, leading to irreversible adsorption, partial unfolding and interfacial aggregation. To prevent this, excipients are added to the antibody solution. Our aim is to measure and theoretically model adsorption rates of antibodies and antibody/excipient mixtures to an air-water interface. Additionally, we aim to examine the unfolding and aggregation that accompanies adsorption of antibodies and their mixtures with excipients at the interface. The study is divided into two parts, in the first case, equilibrium and dynamic adsorption, the molecular orientation and the unfolding of antibodies adsorbed from solution to an air-water interface without surface-active excipients and in the second case, with excipients. Spectroscopic tools (CD and ATR- FTIR) are used to study the degree of folding of equilibrium monolayers of antibodies formed at an air-water interface. The pendant drop/bubble tensiometry is used to characterize the kinetics of the antibody at the air-water interface whereas, to characterize the phase behaviour (lateral self-assembly as a function of surface concentration) and thermodynamics, techniques such as Langmuir Blodgett and Brewster Angle Microscopy are used. Lastly, we aim to evaluate the correlation between the thermodynamics of adsorption and the spatial aggregation propensity (SAP) of the antibodies. The project is in collaboration with Professor Charles Maldarelli, Levich Insititue, CCNY and Bristol-Myers Squibb Company.


Bottom-Up Peptide Design

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Interfacial Crystallization

Polyelectrolyte (DNA)-condensation


Folding and Fishing

Drug Delivery


Polymer Electrolytes

Janus Particles At Interfaces