Category Archives: TLC

Thin Layer Chromatography used to clear fish in India

The fishing ban put in place after an oil tanker collision off fishing in Indiathe coast of India has been lifted after Thin Layer Chromatography tests on 138 samples revealed no trace of oil.

Here’s excerpts from the Hindustan Times:

On August 10, three days after the collision, the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation had taken 138 samples of local varieties of fish such as mandeli, red prawns and Bombay duck from 30 civic markets and tested them.

The Thin Layer Chromatography (TLC) test on these samples, conducted at the National Institute of Oceanography and a private institute, showed no traces of oil. “No trace of oil has been found on any of the samples. But fish-eaters should be cautious,” said Deepak Kamat, assistant municipal commissioner, markets department.

Click Here to read the complete article.

Teaching thin Layer Chromatography at Elon University

One of the great things about trade shows and conferences is connecting with educators and find out how they are using chromatography in the classroom.

At the NAOSMM conference we were thrilled to talk with Paul Weller, Science Laboratory Manager at Elon University’s Department of Chemistry.

In this video, Weller explains how he uses Thin Layer Chromatography in the classroom.

High School Students learning TLC/Forensics in England

These excerpts come from TivertonPeople in the UK:Tiverton High School students

In a partnership between the science departments at Petroc in Tiverton and Tiverton High School, seventy-five Year 10 High School pupils spent a morning in the Petroc laboratories with some of the college’s BTEC Forensic Science and A Level students performing a programme of tests and analysis. 

The activities were based around techniques that are used in a wide variety of scientific settings such as blood typing of a suspects’ blood samples, and blood found at a crime scene, thin layer chromatography of pink lipstick to identify all the different coloured pigments that are found in this lipstick and Titrations to determine the Vitamin C concentration of a range of Apple juices found in the supermarket.

Lynda Broomhead, science lecturer at Petroc said: “Both staff and students from the High School were very positive about the benefits of this event.”

Click Here to read the complete article.

Chromatography featured on Forensics Blog

We just discovered a great new blog dedicated specifically to Forensics.

A recent post caught our eye:

Chromatography – A Powerful Tool For Forensics

Here’s some excerpts:

What this process allows, among various other benefits, is the precise separation of complex chemical mixtures using a color-coded matrix. The identification of chemicals by means of a color code has made chromatography very popular, especially at potentially messy forensic crime scenes.
Usually, the application of chromatography in a laboratory setting involves passing a mixture through a series of phases. The mixture passes from a mobile phase, through a stationary phase, and results in the isolation of the desired molecule or compound.

The uses of chromatography are varied and accurate, making it a perfect match for law enforcement. As the forensic specialists forge forward with their investigations, stay tuned to your favorite crime show. You may hear them mention, as the dramatic music crescendos and your favorite stars pretend to be concerned, a chromatographical process.

Click Here to read the full post

Of course we can’t let this opportunity go without another look at Thin Layer Chromatography being used in the popular television show “CSI”

LCGC’s “The Column” Cover Story: Unlocking the doors with TLC

The new issue of LCGC’s “The Column” features a great The columncover story on Thin Layer Chromatography. The article, written by Analtech Technical Director Ned Dugan, explores the many ways TLC is being used.

The article focuses on some key examples:

  • Fighting the Scourge of Counterfeit Medications
  • Protecting Infants from Patulin Contamination
  • Identifying a new nucleotide in human DNA
  • Identifying the H1N1 Virus
  • Use in Forensic Science

Click Here to see the entire issue.

Thin Layer Chromatography used in cancer research

We picked up this application of Thin Layer Chromatography from

While they haven’t exactly discovered a cure for cancer, what Hughes and Arauza did over the summer months does have quite a bit of value — both in terms of scientific research and in their own personal education and edification…

The pair technically started their research in the spring 2009 term after learning in November that they were chosen for the program. They spent the spring doing an extensive literature review once they chose a topic from the umbrella of choices they were presented.

They chose to follow a path started by May 2009 graduate Joanne Jacob, who had experimented with 12 different herbs and their effect on tumor growth in mice. One in particular had significant results in Jacob’s research, and the two coeds decided to further check out Ashwagandha, commonly known as Indian Ginseng and used by many to treat depression, inflammation and neurological disorders.

Using a powdered form of the root, Hughes and Arauza first rinsed it to remove any lipids, then ran a 6-hour process known as a Soxhlet to liquify the extract into a more usable form. Gray likened the process to a drip coffee maker, where heated water (or in this case methanol) runs through the extract and then back through repeatedly until it is complete.

Using thin-layer chromatography on glass plates, the team was able to separate the extract into various compounds. Through nearly 30 plates — a time-consuming process itself — the duo was able to identify one particular compound that was strong every time. They eluded the compound from the plate and tested it on 4T1 breast cancer cells grown in Petri dishes to determine how it would affect the cells.

The results were astonishing.

“This was really annihilating the breast cancer cells,” noted Arauza, pointing to a chart of the results that showed the cell growth was dramatically reduced compared to even the full extract. “This one was very potent; none of the others were even close.”

Click Here to read the complete story.

Ned Dugan featured in TLC Forum

Analtech’s Technical Director, Ned Dugan, is featured in aNed Dugan, Technical Director recently posted Technology Forum on Thin Layer Chromatography on LCGC’s Chromatography Online.

Here’s an excerpt:

What advantages does TLC have over other methods for pharmaceutical analysis?

Dugan: In some ways, TLC can offer obvious advantages to other methods for analysis. Usually TLC is simpler, faster, more environmentally friendly, and significantly less expensive than other forms of analysis. Minimal sample preparation is required and solvent consumption is comparatively low. In addition, TLC is a very simple and forgiving method of analysis. If a mistake is made, very little time or resources are wasted.

In other ways, TLC can be the perfect compliment to other methods of analysis. Besides the fact that TLC is used as an inexpensive pilot method for establishing separation protocols, there are many hyphenated chromatography techniques that involve TLC. 

Click Here to read the complete forum.