In the scope of achieving the separation of chiral molecules, enzyme enhanced ultrafiltration (EEUF), a new method based on polymer enhanced ultrafiltration (PEUF), utilizing apoenzymes as ligands, was developed. Benzoin was chosen as the model chiral molecule. Bovine serum albumin (BSA) and apo form of benzaldehyde lyase (BAL) (E.C. 188.8.131.52) were used as chiral ligands in PEUF and EEUF experiments, respectively. In order to bind to the target enantiomer well, the addition of ligand to the benzoin solution was followed by ultrafiltration. With the use of BSA as ligand, adaptation of PEUF for chiral target molecules and process parameter optimization was carried out; whereas, in EEUF studies the effect of ligand concentration was focused on. In PEUF experiments, although total benzoin retention values reached to 48.7% and 41.3% at pH 10, for 15% (v/v) PEG 400 and 30% (v/v) DMSO cosolvents, respectively; obtained enantiomeric excess (ee) % values were all less than 20%. In EEUF experiments, at BAL concentrations greater than 158 ppm, total benzoin retention and ee% remained constant at ca. 75% and 60%, respectively. On the other hand, at 61 ppm BAL concentration, total benzoin retention was kept at ca. 75%, but ee% decreased to ca. 30%, probably due to the nonspecific binding of benzoin to DNA and other proteins. Thus, the method developed enzyme enhanced ultrafiltration, functioned with its intended purpose effectively in chiral separation. (C) 2008 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.