Simulated Moving Bed Separation of Betulinic and Ursolic Acids Based on Computer Simulations using Data from the Method of Moments (Pages: 7-15)

José P.S. Aniceto1, Ivo S. Azenha1, Adélio Mendes2 and Carlos M. Silva1,*

1CICECO – Aveiro Institute of Materials, Department of Chemistry, University of Aveiro, 3810-193 Aveiro,
2LEPABE-Faculdade de Engenharia, Universidade do Porto, 4200-465 Porto, Portugal





Abstract: Betulinic and ursolic acids are two triterpenic acids with interesting nutraceutical and pharmacological properties.

In this work, the simulated moving bed (SMB) separation of betulinic and ursolic acids is studied through computational simulations. A mobile phase composed by methanol/water 95/5 (%, v/v) and Apollo C18 columns were selected for the separation. Equilibrium and mass transfer data required for the SMB simulations were determined experimentaly folowing the method of moments.

A SMB unit was designed and its operating conditions were determinded following the Triangle Theory methodology with the aim of achieving 99 % purity for both triterpenic acids. Four SMB column configurations were evaluated and the best result was obtained using a 1-1-2-1 arraangement. This SMB unit was capable of providing betulinic acid with purity of 99.1 % and ursolic acid with purity of 99.6 %.

Keywords: Chromatography, modeling, purification, triterpenic acids.