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Application Note: Cost-effective approach to the purification of cannabinoids using CPC

Posted: 18 October 2018 | | No comments yet

Chromatographic purification of natural compounds presents many challenges to scientists because of the complex nature of the starting matrices that are used in the process…

These starting materials can damage traditional columns and cartridges, decreasing the length of their usage and increasing costs; that is, if the particular system can even accommodate the starting material. Centrifugal partition chromatography (CPC), which uses both liquid stationary and mobile phases, can handle heavily contaminated, complex starting materials, such as direct extracts from many biological sources, and has been shown useful for the isolation of piperine from Piper nigrum1, gingerol from ginger2 and hundreds of other natural compounds from plants. Additionally, by relying on a liquid stationary phase, CPC columns do not need to be replaced like traditional columns and cartridges used by preparative HPLC and flash chromatography methods.

This article will discuss the basic principles behind CPC and explore the use and benefits of CPC in the purification of cannabinoids from crude cannabis oil.

What is CPC?

Centrifugal partition chromatography can be performed on pilot, preparative and industrial scales. Whereas both preparative and flash chromatography rely on a solid silica stationary phase, CPC is silica-free, using two immiscible liquids as stationary and mobile phases. Similar to both preparative HPLC and flash chromatography methods, the separation of the target molecule is based on its respective affinity to the liquid phases as expressed by the partition coefficient, KD, much as if you used a glass separatory funnel.

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