The Isolation and Purification of Alpha-Fetoprotein from Human Cord Serum
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Alpha-fetoprotein (AFP), a serum glycoprotein, is the major circulating protein of the early human fetus. The quantitative determination of AFP levels in serum has been shown to be of value in the diagnosis of various diseases of man, including primary cancer of the liver, teratoblastomas, and fetal diseases associated with neural tube defects. Purified AFP is necessary to further study the involvement of AFP in these diseases. This report describes a sequence of techniques for the purification of AFP. The purification sequence includes ammonium sulphate precipitation, column chromotography, and isoelectric focusing. Highlighted in this report is the complete removal of albumin from human serum by Blue Sepharoes CL-6B and theories of how this is accomplished.