Adv Funct Mater. 2023 Apr 4;33(14):2213881. doi: 10.1002/adfm.202213881. Epub 2023 Jan 25.
The use of benign stimuli to control the binding and release of labile biologics for their isolation from complex feedstocks is a key goal of modern biopharmaceutical technology. This study introduces cyclic azobenzene-peptide (CAP) hybrid ligands for the rapid and discrete photo-responsive capture and release of blood coagulation Factor VIII (FVIII). A predictive method – based on amino acid sequence and molecular architecture of CAPs – was developed to correlate the conformation of cis/trans CAP photo-isomers to FVIII binding and release. The combined in silico and in vitro analysis of FVIII:peptide interactions guided the design of a rational approach to optimize isomerization kinetics and biorecognition of CAPs. A photoaffinity adsorbent, prepared by conjugating selected CAP G-cycloAZOB[Lys-YYKHLYN-Lys]-G on translucent chromatographic beads, featured high binding capacity (> 6 mg of FVIII per mL of resin) and rapid photo-isomerization kinetics (τ < 30s) when exposed to 420-450 nm light at the intensity of 0.1 W·cm-2. The adsorbent purified FVIII from a recombinant harvest using a single mobile phase, affording high product yield (>90%), purity (>95%), and blood clotting activity. The CAPs introduced in this report demonstrate a novel route integrating gentle operational conditions in a rapid and efficient bioprocess for the purification of life-saving biotherapeutics.