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Ionic Liquids as Stabilization and Refolding Additives and Solvents for Proteins

  • Kyoko FujitaEmail author
Part of the Advances in Biochemical Engineering/Biotechnology book series


This chapter focuses on recent advances in the use of ionic liquids as additives and solvents in protein applications. The solvent properties of ionic liquids can be tuned by the appropriate selection of cation and anion. The effects of different kinds of ionic liquids on protein stability and refolding behavior have been investigated and reported. The ionic liquid properties affect the intermolecular interactions of proteins, inducing different formations and folding behavior. These effects also vary with the concentration of ionic liquids. Although many of the associated mechanisms are not completely clear, some of this behavior may be attributed to the kosmotropicity of the ions and their Hofmeister effects.

Graphical Abstract


Additive Aggregation Component ion Protein refolding Protein stability Solvation 



This research was supported by a Grant-in-Aid for Scientific Research from the Japan Society for the Promotion of Science (KAKENHI, No. 17H01225). K.F. is grateful for the fund from the Asahi Glass Foundation. Reproduced from Fujita et al. 2016 with permission from The Royal Society of Chemistry.


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© Springer International Publishing AG, part of Springer Nature  2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Pathophysiology, School of PharmacyTokyo University of Pharmacy and Life SciencesHachiojiJapan

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