Membrane Characterisation for Fractionated Dextran Analysis in Sugar Industry
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The separation characteristics of two polyethersulfone membranes (molecular weight cut-off (MWCO) specification of 4 kDa and 10 kDa) for the retention of different dextran fractions (T2000, T40, T10) from aqueous solutions were systematically investigated, aiming at implementing them as a preparatory step for dextran analysis in sugar industry practice. Ultrafiltration is used to cause differences in optical rotation due to mechanical separation of dextran from aqueous solutions. The membrane separation performance was evaluated using polarimetry and size exclusion chromatography. It was found that the presence of sucrose leads to dramatically improved separation efficiencies for both membrane settings. Specific cut-off values for the separation of dextran from aqueous sucrose solutions have been determined, 10 kDa and 50 kDa for the membranes with a MWCO specification of 4 kDa and 10 kDa, respectively. The data indicate that the basic membrane setting (MWCO of 4 kDa) enables the complete separation and therefore the analytical quantification of the whole molecular mass spectrum relevant for sugar industry. The combination of both membranes, furthermore, indicates that it is suited for the differentiation between a high and a low molecular mass dextran fraction. The application of this new approach for the determination of dextran with varying molecular masses at various contents in synthetic thin juices as well as in real sugar beet raw juices indicates promising prospects.
KeywordsDextran Ultrafiltration Molecular mass Chromatography Polarisation
The authors would like to thank the Federal Institute for Materials Research and Testing (BAM, Bundesanstalt für Materialforschung und -prüfung) for performing and evaluating SAXS measurements.
This study was funded by the WTSH (Wirtschaftsförderung und Technologietransfer Schleswig-Holstein GmbH).
Compliance with Ethical Standards
Conflict of Interest
K. Abraham declares that she has no conflict of interest. S. Kunst declares that there are no conflict of interest. E. Flöter declares that there are no conflict of interest.
This article does not contain any studies with human participants or animals performed by any of the authors.
Informed consent was obtained from all individual participants included in the study.
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