Chromatography, a process developed over 100 years ago by Russian botanist Mikhail Tswett, has become an essential tool in the analysis and testing of various compounds and contaminants in foods, beverages, and vaccine creation. Chromatography separates components of a mixture as the material moves through a column filled with stationary phase using a mobile phase. Traditional chromatography faces several challenges, such as inconsistent performance, waste management, and scaling difficulties due to air pockets created by improper packing or adsorption of particles on the column’s stationary phase.
Centrifugal partition chromatography (CPC) is a liquid-liquid separation technique that provides consistent results by utilizing a non-degrading liquid stationary phase that fills out the column perfectly. CPC is adaptable and easily scalable, with high precision achieved through different compound partition coefficients. The chromatogram from CPC provides essential chemical information about the separation of compounds based on their partition coefficients in two immiscible solvents.
CPC offers several advantages over traditional chromatography. It has total recovery as there is no irreversible adsorption on the stationary phase, allowing for almost infinite solvent combinations to fine-tune a system for individual separation tasks. CPC is versatile, forgiving, and cost-effective with outstanding stationary phase ratio and scalability options that allow for easy adaptation to large-scale applications.
However, CPC requires a different thought process during purification than traditional chromatography, with selectivity being more critical than particle size to increase resolution. The infinite combination of solvents also provides flexibility in changing between product lines or compounds of interest.
When selecting a purification technology, it is essential to evaluate the total cost of ownership together with other considerations like purification objective and load capacity. Legacy technologies that utilize solid-stationary phases like C18 Silica have higher cost burdens due to disposal fees or regeneration/cleaning fees compared to all-liquid chromatography technologies where mobile phases are solvents that can be extensively reused with solvent recovery equipment.
In conclusion, centrifugal partition chromatography has become an integral part of purification technology due to its adaptability, versatility, scalability options, and cost-effectiveness. Its ability to provide consistent results while utilizing solvent combinations makes it an attractive alternative to traditional chromatography with solid-stationary phases.