Appl Microbiol Biotechnol.
The production of botulinum neurotoxin A (BoNT/A) for therapeutic and cosmetic applications requires precise determination of batch potency, and the enzymatic activity of BoNT/A light chain is a crucial index that can be measured in vitro. We previously established a SNAP-25 chip-based assay using surface plasmon resonance (SPR) that is more sensitive than the standard mouse bioassay for the quantification of BoNT/A activity. We have now adapted this procedure for pharmaceutical preparations. The optimized SPR assay allowed multiple measurements on a single chip, including the kinetics of substrate cleavage. The activity of five different batches of a pharmaceutical BoNT/A preparation was determined in a blind study by SPR and found to be in agreement with data from the in vivo mouse lethality assay. Biosensor detection of specific proteolytic products has the potential to accurately monitor the activity of pharmaceutical BoNT/A preparations, and a single chip can be used to assay more than 100 samples.