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Liquid Extraction: Folch


Folch’s extraction procedure is one of the most popular methods for isolating lipids from biological samples. It takes advantage of the biphasic solvent system consisting of chloroform/methanol/water in a volumetric ratio of 8:4:3 (v/v/v).


Folch’s method is one of the major contributions to the field of lipid biochemistry by the Catalan biochemist and prominent scientist in the field of neurochemistry Jordi Folch-Pi (1911–1979) (Lees and Pope 2001). Prior to Folch’s method there was no effective way to quantitatively isolate lipids from biological tissue samples. The standard method for lipid extraction from tissues until Folch was Bloor’s method that applied a number of successive extractions using ethanol, ether, and chloroform and/or petrolether (Bloor 1928). This method was very time consuming and the resulting lipid extracts were not free from non-lipid contaminants. Folch, driven by his interest in neurochemistry, developed his famous extraction method in...


  • Lipid Class
  • Biphasic System
  • Volumetric Ratio
  • Cell Biological Process
  • Lower Chloroform Phase

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Gas chromatography/mass spectrometry


Liquid chromatography–mass spectrometry


Methyl-tert-butyl ether


Phosphatidyl acid












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Correspondence to Dominik Schwudke .

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Eggers, L.F., Schwudke, D. (2016). Liquid Extraction: Folch. In: Wenk, M. (eds) Encyclopedia of Lipidomics. Springer, Dordrecht.

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