We describe a general purification method for recombinant proteins based upon the selective interaction between a poly-histidine peptide, which is fused to the protein of interest, and a novel metal chelate adsorbent. The principle of the technique is illustrated with mouse dihydrofolate reductase. DNA elements coding for adjacent histidines were fused to the mouse dihydrofolate reductase gene. Subsequent expression in E. coli resulted in the production of hybrid proteins that could be purified by immobilized metal ion affinity chromatography, followed by removal of the histidine affinity peptide with carboxypeptidase A.
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