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  1. Alconox
26 October 2018

Removing Protein in Pharmaceutical and Biotech Manufacturing

Q) How do you remove protein out of pipes, centrifuges and tanks in a recirculation clean-in-place (CIP) environment with water temperatures averaging 20°C?

A) In a cooler or ambient-temperature environment, removing protein can certainly be tough. After all, heat expedites cleaning.

Consider adding an enzymatic cleaner to your alkaline/acidic cleaning routine. A product such as Tergazyme® Enzyme-Active Powdered Detergent is efficient at removing protein residue and will also slow down the formation of biofilm and bioresidue. It contains both proteases and powerful emulsifying surfactants, and will allow the regular cleaning cycle to clean effectively for more cycles.

The enzyme cleaves the serine bond of the protein, while for biofilms the protease addresses both the cells and any proteins bound up in the polysaccharide biofilm, whereas the surfactants improve wetting and penetration through the hydrophobic polysaccharide biofilm.

Please note that Tergazyme detergent is a powder that you typically mix 1-3% in cool to warm water. Use within eight hours of formulation ensure the enzymes have not autocatalysed.

Tergazyme detergent is a high-foaming cleaner and would not be suitable for a spray-in-air, CIP systems. You can pump and gently agitate Tergazyme solutions, however, you cannot employ high-agitation at an air/solution interface without getting excessive foam.

If you have an old protein build-up or biofilm residue, you might want to do a 30-60 minute 3% Tergazyme clean (soak/recirculation) at 20°C before routine cleaning procedures. This soak can also be done periodically as preventive maintenance.  Again, while heat helps, the cleaning power of the Tergazyme solution will be effective at removing protein at ambient temperatures.

For more information about any of Alconox’s detergents, make an enquiry using the form on this page.

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