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Chiral technology has become a very important aspect for scientists involved in the pharmaceutical, chemical, and agricultural industry.
Chiral technology has become a very important aspect for scientists involved in the pharmaceutical, chemical, and agricultural industry. The chiral enantiomers can have vitally different pharmacological effects in biological systems. In fact, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration mandates that only therapeutically active isomers must introduced to the prescription drug market.
Separation Instrumentation Demand
Separation of chiral compounds is typically performed using by capillary electrophoresis and chromatographic techniques like HPLC, GC, and SFC. Scientists might also use a variety of methods to analyze stereoisomers such as polarimetry, NMR, and calorimetry.
In HPLC, there are five types of chiral stationary phases including macrocyclic glycopeptides, cyclodextrins, cellulose/amylose, small molecule, and proteins, which are typically bonded to silica. The elution order of chiral compounds depends on the formation of transient diastereoisomers due to the interaction with the column packing. The compound that forms the less stable diastereoisomer will elute first.
Chiral chemists can use different solvents, additives, and alter parameters like pH to increase resolution. Temperature plays a key role in separation of chiral compounds. Generally, if the temperature is low enough, it will increase the chiral recognition. However, a temperature that is too low will affect the kinetics of the compound and cause peaks to broaden. Depending on the class of compounds to be separated, there often is a temperature standard that scientist follow.
According to SDi's estimates, the 2007 market for HPLC chiral columns is about $30â50 million. The pharmaceutical industry is responsible for the majority of the market and is expected to drive future growth. Applications in agriculture and chemical markets also fuel demand.
The foregoing data was extracted and adapted from SDi's High Performance Liquid Chromatography: New Opportunities in a Reinvigorated Market report. For more information, contact Glenn Cudiamat, VP of Research Services, Strategic Directions International, Inc., 6242 Westchester Parkway, Suite 100, Los Angeles, CA 90045, (310) 641-4982, fax: (310) 641-8851, e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org, Web site: www.strategic-directions.com.