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Unknown Identification

Here at the Centre we have the expertise and equipment to effectively isolate and identify both small molecule and biological unknowns/impurities and determine their source.  Typically, we would use Chromatographic and Mass Spectrometry techniques to initially identify the unknown.  Depending on the results we can then use a number of isolation and purification techniques to obtain sufficient quantities of purified material to allow for a more accurate characterization using remote techniques such as NMR and Vibrational Spectroscopy.  We can isolate and purify the unknown using a range of techniques including:

  • hydrolysis (digestion);
  • liquid- liquid extraction;
  • solid phase extraction;
  • supercritical fluid extraction;
  • preparative HPLC;
  • column chromatography;
  • recrystallization.

We also have the ability to synthesise small quantities of the unknown using established literature methods or by design of bespoke approaches accessing the University's experienced organic chemists. Preparation of purified, fully characterised reference materials allows unequivocal identity of impurities and generation of reference materials for future analysis.

analyst in MS lab

Sample preparation for HPLC-MSMS assay