Microporous poly(2-hydroxyethyl methacrylate) (PHEMA) membranes were prepared by W-initiated photopolymerization of HEMA in the presence of an initiator (alpha,alpha'-azobisisobutyronitrile, AIBN). An affinity dye Cibacron Blue F3GA (CB) was attached covalently and then Fe3+ ions incorporated. The PHEMA-CB and PHEMA-CB-Fe3+ membranes derived were used for adsorption of glucose oxidase (GOD). The adsorption capacities of these membranes were determined under conditions of different pH and with different concentrations of the adsorbate in the medium. The adsorption phenomena appeared to follow a typical Langmuir isotherm. The glucose oxidase adsorption capacity of the Fe3+ incorporated membrane (87 mu g cm(-2)) was greater than that of the dye-derived membrane (66 mu g cm(-2)). Non-specific adsorption of the glucose oxidase on the PHEMA membranes was negligible. The K-m values for both immobilized glucose oxidase PHEMA-CB-GOD (8.3) and PHEMA-CB-Fe3+-GOD (7.6) were higher than that of the free enzyme (6.2 mM). Optimum reaction pH was 5.5 for the free and 6.0 for both immobilized preparations. The optimum reaction temperature of the adsorbed enzymes was 5 degrees C higher than that of the free enzyme and was significantly broader. After 15 successive uses the retained activity of the adsorbed enzyme was 87%. It was observed that enzymes could be repeatedly adsorbed and desorbed on the derived PHEMA membranes without significant loss in adsorption capacity or enzymic activity. (C) 1998 SCI.