Lipids: Isolation and Purification
Pure lipid preparations in the range of 1–100 mg are commonly required for biophysical studies. This contrasts with the microgram requirements of analytical and biochemical methods. Structure studies by X-ray (Caffrey 1989) and NMR (see “Cross-References”) are especially demanding regarding the lipid amounts. As a result, scarce lipid sources such as cell cultures, which are appropriate using the procedures of biochemical studies, cannot be applied. The capability to purify abundant and sufficiently purified mg samples is a critical prerequisite for biophysical studies of biological lipid. However, the improvements in sample preparation for X-ray such as “the rock and roll method” (Tristram-Nagle 2007) and enhanced ESR equipment sensitivity by resonator are decreasing the lipid quantities required for structural methods.
For amounts required by biophysical studies, the extraction of lipids from biological sources is challenged by chemical synthesis, which can be scaled up...
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