The purification of RNA is important for research laboratories and clinics. Throughout the COVID19 pandemic, the purification of RNA has been in the news because the rate of RNA purification defines how quickly testing for COVID19 can be done. RNA is now in the news again, mRNA specifically, as major companies have developed mRNA vaccines for COVID19. In brief, the vaccine is an injection that sends lipid coated mRNA into cells. In cells, the mRNA is translated into the spike protein of SARS-CoV-2. Companies have shown robust responses to the vaccines as the creation of the protein in cells elicits a good amount of response from the correct immune cells.
Filtration is a simple technique used to separate solid particles from suspension in a liquid solution. There are many filtration methods available, but all are based on the same general principle: a heterogenous mixture is poured over a filter membrane. The filter membrane has pores of a particular size. Particles larger than the pores will be unable to pass through the membrane, while particles smaller than the pores will pass through unhindered. Additionally, all liquids will pass through. The final result of a filtration process is a collection of residue on the filtration membrane. This residue is therefore effectively separated from the rest of the mixture that passed through the membrane.
Immunoaffinity chromatography is a method for separating target antibodies or antigens from a heterogenous solution. It is column-based, which means that the solution is flowed through a column and eluted at the other end. The column is pre-functionalized with the capture antibody or antigen. The target protein is adsorbed onto the resin-bound capture protein and is retained in the column while the remaining solution is eluted. The fraction containing the target protein is later eluted and purified.
Why do we need immunoassays kits?
There are many types of Immunoassay kits that are used in laboratories, clinical settings, and in industry. A typical laboratory bench-top kit is the ELISA kit, which stands for enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay. In a core facility or clinical setting you will find larger instrumententation for assays such as the latex turbidity immunoassay (LTIA) or chemiluminescent immunoassays (CLIA).