Value-added proteins from milk and whey

Certain milk proteins have, when isolated in relatively pure form, many high value applications in the food and health care industries. Lactoferrin is one prominent example of a high value antimicrobial milk protein, which commands a market value about 50-100 times higher than that of the bulk protein. Still, most of these exceptionally highly priced proteins are not generally produced by the dairy industry. Mainstream production is dominated by bulk whey protein concentrates (WPC) and whey protein isolates (WPI), which today are commodity products sold in a highly competitive market. The lack of commercially feasible technologies as well as a strategy for their implementation, leaves the industry with no options to pursue this obvious commercial opportunity. In particular, the denaturation of the proteins during isolation and destruction of valuable side streams render the current manufacturing practices unsuitable for the task.

Our novel ChimerAds technology enable cost-efficient manufacture of all of the major whey proteins in individual fractions of high purity whilst retaining high functionality. This is achieved by solely employing standard industry type equipment and food grade processing aids.

Dried alpha-lactalbumin powder
SDS-PAGE Lane 1: Sweet whey, Lane 2: alpha-lactalbumin product, Lane 3: beta-lactoglobulin enriched product

Example from our pipeline: Separation of whey proteins into high grade alpha-lactalbumin and a beta-lactoglobulin enriched WPI.

Our alpha-lactalbumin product (Lane 2) is highly enriched and practically devoid of low molecular weight compounds, carbohydrates, lipids and most of the other whey proteins. The remaining non-alpha protein bands are primarily beta-lactoglobulin which may be further removed in a subsequent polishing step, if need be.

By virtue of the non-destructive processing method, the isolated alpha-lactalbumin is substantially native. In addition to this conservation of functionality, the method offers very high yields, which is witnessed by the only slight amount of alpha-lactalbumin present in the enriched beta-lactoglobulin product, see lane 3 of the SDS PAGE pictured.

The beta-lactoglobulin fraction is a highly functional food protein ingredient. The immunoglobulins and lactoferrin present may be isolated as individual proteins in a subsequent polishing step.

The LPS whey protein refinery