Bioprocess and Biosystems Engineering

, Volume 41, Issue 9, pp 1271–1281 | Cite as

Simultaneous decolorization and deproteinization of α,ω-dodecanedioic acid fermentation broth by integrated ultrafiltration and adsorption treatments

  • Weifeng Cao
  • Yujue Wang
  • Jianquan Luo
  • Junxiang Yin
  • Yinhua Wan
Research Paper


α,ω-Dicarboxylic acids (DC) are versatile chemical intermediates with different chain length. For biosynthesis of DC, to obtain the highly pure product via crystallization, it is required to remove pigments and proteins in fermentation broth. However, a trade-off between decolorization/deproteinization ratio and DC recovery during the purification process was found, which impeded DC production by fermentation. When ultrafiltration (UF) was applied to treat α,ω-dodecanedioic acid (DC12) broth, 93.4% of DC12 recovery, 80.5% of decolorization ratio and 61.7% of deproteinization ratio were achieved by a PES 3 membrane. However, the membrane technology could not effectively retain the pigments or proteins with low molecular weight when a high DC12 permeation was required. Meanwhile, the selected activated charcoal or macroporous resins were not good adsorbents for the present system. Furthermore, an integrated process for decolorization and deproteinization was developed. After filtration with PES3 membrane, an activated charcoal was used to remove the small proteins and pigments in the UF permeate. As a result, 91.4% of DC12 recovery, 94.7% of decolorization ratio and 84.8% of deproteinization ratio were obtained by such two-stage strategy. These results would serve as a valuable guide for process design and practical operation in subsequent industrial application.


α,ω-Dodecanedioic acid Ultrafiltration Decolorization Deproteinization Adsorption 



α,ω-Dicarboxylic acids




α,ω-Dodecanedioic acid


Trans-membrane pressure


Cell- and dodecane-free broth


DC12 solution from the CFB


Supernatant of DC12 free CFB


Fermentation medium


Irreversible fouling


Initial pure water permeability


Final pure water permeability


Volume reduction ratio


Molecular weight cut-off



The authors thank the National High Technology Research and Development Program of China (No. 2015AA021002 and No. 2014AA021005), and the National Science Foundation of China (No. 21406240) for the financial supports.

Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of interest

The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag GmbH Germany, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Weifeng Cao
    • 1
  • Yujue Wang
    • 1
    • 2
  • Jianquan Luo
    • 1
    • 2
  • Junxiang Yin
    • 3
  • Yinhua Wan
    • 1
    • 2
  1. 1.State Key Laboratory of Biochemical Engineering, Institute of Process EngineeringChinese Academy of SciencesBeijingPeople’s Republic of China
  2. 2.Chinese Academy of SciencesUniversity of the Chinese Academy of SciencesBeijingPeople’s Republic of China
  3. 3.China National Center for Biotechnology DevelopmentBeijingPeople’s Republic of China

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