Outlook

Electrophoretic techniques that exploit the differential migration of ions are over 100 years old. Though the applications and physical formats have evolved, the underlying technique continues to endure. The iteration of discontinuous buffer systems has had intermittent use since its introduction over 30 years ago. This is presumably due to the perceived added

Table 1 Examples of discontinuous buffer system using constant leading ion conditions3

Trailing ion

m Mobility

Leading ion pH

Concentration of

Ion concentration

Net mobility

k Trailingzone

species

(x104cm2V_1 s_1)

trailing ion species

(mmol L~1)

(x104 cm2V~1s~

1) conductance

(mmol L"1)

(cm2 mor1)

Hepes

1.45

8.0

26.4

25.1

1.38

0.98

Tricine

2.18

8.0

33.6

27.1

1.76

1.25

Asparagine

2.80

8.5

38.2

23.2

1.70

1.20

Glycylglycine

2.85

8.0

38.5

27.8

2.06

1.47

Taurine

3.27

9.0

41.0

27.2

2.17

1.54

Glycine

3.74

8.0

43.4

9.4

0.81

0.58

aThe leading ion in all cases is 50 mmoL L 1 formate (ion mobility of 5.50x10 4cm2V 1 s 1) buffered with Tris (ion mobility of 2.60x 10~4cm2 V-1 s"1) to the indicated pH. The counterion in all cases is Tris.

aThe leading ion in all cases is 50 mmoL L 1 formate (ion mobility of 5.50x10 4cm2V 1 s 1) buffered with Tris (ion mobility of 2.60x 10~4cm2 V-1 s"1) to the indicated pH. The counterion in all cases is Tris.

Table 2 Examples of discontinuous buffer systems with constant trailing ion concentration3

Trailing ion species

Concentration of

Ion concentration

Net mobility

Trailing zone

Leading ion

trailing ion species

(mmol L~1)

(x 104 cm2V~1s~1)

conductance

concentration

(mmol L~1)

(cm2 moT1)

(mmol L~1)

Hepes

31.6

30

1.38

1.17

60

Tricine

37.2

30

1.76

1.38

55

Asparagine

49.4

30

1.70

1.56

65

Glycylglycine

41.5

30

2.06

1.58

65

Taurine

45.2

30

2.17

1.70

55

Glycine

138.5

30

0.81

1.83

160

aThe leading ion in all cases is formate (ion mobility of 5.50 x 10 4 cm2 V 1 s 1) at the indicated ion concentration. The counterion in all cases is Tris (ion mobility of 2.60 x 10~4 cm2 V-1 s~1).

complexity of the technique or ignorance of the technique's advantages. However, the benefits of sample stacking, mobility tailoring and an ionic reference front are unchanged and unique when compared to zonal buffer systems. With new applications and challenges for electrophoretic separations, renewed attention to the technique is certain.

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