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BioMed Research International
Volume 2017 (2017), Article ID 9573021, 7 pages
https://doi.org/10.1155/2017/9573021
Research Article

Development of an Economical Method to Reduce the Extractable Latex Protein Levels in Finished Dipped Rubber Products

Department of Chemistry, Faculty of Science, University of Colombo, 03 Colombo, Sri Lanka

Correspondence should be addressed to Bulathsinhalage Gayani Kanchana Perera

Received 28 March 2017; Accepted 7 May 2017; Published 19 June 2017

Academic Editor: Robert Movérare

Copyright © 2017 Ambegoda Liyanage Harini Amalka Perera and Bulathsinhalage Gayani Kanchana Perera. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

Abstract

Natural rubber latex (NRL) allergy is caused by the extractable latex proteins in dipped rubber products. It is a major concern for the consumers who are sensitive to the allergenic extractable proteins (EP) in products such as NRL gloves. Objective of this research was to develop an economical method to reduce the EP in finished dipped NRL products. In order to reduce the EP levels, two natural proteases, bromelain from pineapple and papain from papaya, were extracted and partially purified using (NH4)2SO4. According to the newly developed method, different glove samples were treated with a 5% solution of each partially purified enzyme, for 2 hours at 60°C. Residual amounts of in treated samples were quantified using the modified Lowry assay (ASTM D5712-10). Bromelain displayed a 54 (±11)% reduction of the EP from the dipped rubber products, whereas it was 58 (±8)% with papain. These results clearly indicate that the selected natural proteases, bromelain, and papain contribute significantly towards the reduction of the total EP in finished NRL products. Application of bromelain enzyme for the aforementioned purpose has not been reported up to date, whereas papain has been used to treat raw NRL towards reducing the EP.