Analysis of recombinant monoclonal antibodies in hydrophilic interaction chromatography: A generic method development approach

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Abstract

Hydrophilic interaction liquid chromatography (HILIC) is a well-established technique for the separation and analysis of small polar compounds. A recently introduced widepore stationary phase expanded HILIC applications to larger molecules, such as therapeutic proteins. In this paper, we present some generic HILIC conditions adapted for a wide range of FDA and EMA approved recombinant monoclonal antibody (mAb) species and for an antibody-drug conjugate (ADC). Seven approved mAbs possessing various isoelectric point (pI) and hydrophobicity as well as a cysteine conjugated ADC were used in this study. Samples were digested by IdeS enzyme and digests were further fragmented by chemical reduction. The resulting fragments were separated by HILIC. The main benefit of HILIC was the separation of polar variants (glycovariants) in a reasonable analysis time at the protein level, which is not feasible with other chromatographic modes. Three samples were selected and chromatographic conditions were further optimized to maximize resolution. A commercial software was used to build up retention models. Experimental and predicted chromatograms showed good agreement and the average error of retention time prediction was less than 2%. Recovery of various species and sample stability under the applied conditions were also discussed.

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