However ATPE has no large-scale industrial applications yet. This is based substantially on very long phase separation times resulting from low interfacial tensions and low density differences between the phases producing intensive and stable emulsions. This causes an increased footprint of the required mixer/settler devices or the application of additional equipment such as energy consuming centrifuges. The present invention relates to a process for separation or purification of biomolecules via ATPE. The advantages are maintained and the major limitation of long phase separation time is overcome by immobilizing one of the two phases in porous particles. Suspending the impregnated particles in the second aqueous phase containing the biomolecules creates the emulsion without any need for phase separation after the extraction step. During the separation process, the biomolecules partition between the aqueous phase surrounding the particles and the immobilized second aqueous phase inside of the particles’ pores.
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