Reversible covalent immobilization of ligands and proteins on polyacrylamide gels

Ronald L. Schnaar, Barbara G. Langer, Brian K. Brandley

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

18 Scopus citations


Ligands and proteins were covalently but reversibly immobilized on polyacrylamide gels using novel acrylic monomers whose syntheses are reported here. These reagents have an acrylyl group at one end for copolymerization into gels, an N-succinimidyl ester at the other allowing rapid immobilization of molecules having an available primary amino group, and a cleavable disulfide bond in the middle. Two immobilization methods were developed using these reagents. In the first method, a ligand with a primary amino group was treated with the immobilization reagent in anhydrous ethanol and the resulting amide derivative was purified and copolymerized with acrylamide and bisacrylamide resulting in the desired reversible immobilization. In the second method, the immobilization reagents (at densities up to 50 μmol/ml) were directly copolymerized with acrylamide and bisacrylamide to form activated gels of the desired shape and porosity. Proteins or other ligands in aqueous buffers were then added to the activated gels resulting in their covalent immobilization. Ligands or proteins immobilized using the methods reported here remained stably bound even when gels were subjected to boiling in detergents or high-ionic-strength buffers. Immobilized ligands were readily released (>62;97%) from gels by treatment with quantitative amounts of aqueous dithiothreitol (DTT) under mild conditions. Immobilized proteins were also released (up to 87%) from the gels by DTT treatment. Small ligands (e.g., aminohexyl glycosides), active enzymes, and glycoproteins were immobilized, and then recovered, using these reagents.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)268-281
Number of pages14
JournalAnalytical biochemistry
Issue number2
StatePublished - Dec 1985


  • affinity chromatography
  • carbohydrates
  • glycoproteins
  • immobilized enzymes
  • organic synthesis

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biophysics
  • Biochemistry
  • Molecular Biology
  • Cell Biology


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