Milk protein does a membrane good. (Chemistry).Chemical engineers have created a new type of durable membrane from whey protein whey protein,
n soluble protein found in milk whey that has been clotted by rennin, examples of which include alpha-lactalbumin, lactoglobulin, and lactoferrin. , a natural component of milk.
Whey-based membranes might be used to filter particles as small as individual protein molecules during the processing of edible oils, pharmaceuticals, and even milk itself. The membranes might also serve as components of sensors for detecting molecules in a sample of biological fluid, such as blood, says Robert R. Beitle of the University of Arkansas The University of Arkansas strives to be known as a "nationally competitive, student-centered research university serving Arkansas and the world." The school recently completed its "Campaign for the 21st Century," in which the university raised more than $1 billion for the school, used in Fayetteville.
Working in Beitle's lab, graduate student Jiunn Yeong Teo created the membranes by dissolving whey protein in a salt solution. After heating the solution to unfold the protein molecules, Teo let the material cool. Meanwhile, chemical bonding between proteins created the porous membrane structure membrane structure
Structure with a thin, flexible surface (membrane) that carries loads primarily through tensile stresses. There are two main types: tent structures and pneumatic structures. .
Manufacturers generally use volatile and sometimes hazardous solvents to make the polymer membranes common in industrial and medical settings. A source of membranes made from protein in a salt solution could prove to be a more environmentally friendly Environmentally friendly, also referred to as nature friendly, is a term used to refer to goods and services considered to inflict minimal harm on the environment. alternative, says Beitle. "They're as green as you can get," he says. Beitle and Teo report their work in the Oct. 15 JOURNAL OF MEMBRANE SCIENCE.
Next, the researchers must determine whether the whey whey
liquid residue from milk after the removal of cheese curds in the manufacture of cheese. An excellent protein supplement but difficult to handle in the liquid form, except to pigs maintained close to the cheese factory. Dried whey is easy to handle but processing costs are high. membrane stays intact as it filters substances from fluids. That's particularly important in medical and food applications, notes Beitle, since some people are allergic to whey. --J.G.