Source: Laboratory of Dr. Jimmy Franco - Merrimack College
Recrystallization is a technique used to purify solid compounds.1 Solids tend to be more soluble in hot liquids than in cold liquids. During recrystallization, an impure solid compound is dissolved in a hot liquid until the solution is saturated, and then the liquid is allowed to cool.2 The compound should then form relatively pure crystals. Ideally, any impurities that are present will remain in the solution and will not be incorporated into the growing crystals (Figure 1). The crystals can then be removed from the solution by filtration. Not all of the compound is recoverable — some will remain in the solution and will be lost.
Recrystallization is not generally thought of as a separation technique; rather, it is a purification technique in which a small amount of an impurity is removed from a compound. However, if the solubility properties of two compounds are sufficiently different, recrystallization can be used to separate them, even if they are present in nearly equal amounts. Recrystallization works best when most impurities have already been removed by another method, such as extraction or column chromatography.
1Protein Crystallization Lab, Emerald Bio, 2Molecular Biology Lab, Emerald Bio, 3Scientific Sales Representative, Emerald Bio, 4Group Leader II, Emerald Bio, 5Group Leader I, Emerald Bio, 6Chair of Advisory Board, Emerald Bio, 7Director of Multi-Target Services, Emerald Bio, 8Senior Project Leader, Emerald Bio, 9Project Leader II & SSGCID Site Manager, Emerald Bio
Immunology and Infection
1Department of Neuroscience and Cell Biology, University of Texas Medical Branch, 2Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, University of Texas Medical Branch, 3Sealy Center for Structural Biology and Molecular Biophysics, University of Texas Medical Branch
1School of Chemistry, University of Sydney, 2Institute for Superconducting & Electronic Materials, University of Wollongong, 3Australian Synchrotron, 4Australian Nuclear Science and Technology Organisation, 5School of Mechanical, Materials, and Mechatronic Engineering, University of Wollongong, 6School of Chemistry, University of New South Wales
1Zentrum für Molekulare Biologie der Universität Heidelberg (ZMBH), University of Heidelberg
1School of Physics and Astronomy, University of Leeds, 2Institute of Materials Research, University of Leeds, 3School of Chemistry, University of Edinburgh, 4Department of Chemical Engineering, Northeastern University, 5Department of Physics, Northeastern University
1Department of Biological Sciences, University of Pittsburgh, 2Institute of Structural Biology, German Research Center for Environmental Health
1Department of Chemistry, Imperial College London
1Molecular Microbiology and Microbial Pathogenesis Program, Washington University School of Medicine, 2Department of Internal Medicine, Washington University School of Medicine, 3Drug Discovery Program in Pulmonary and Critical Care Medicine, Washington University School of Medicine, 4Biochemistry Program, Washington University School of Medicine, 5Center for the Investigation of Membrane Excitability Diseases, Washington University School of Medicine, 6Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biophysics, Washington University School of Medicine, 7Department of Cell Biology and Physiology, Washington University School of Medicine
1Department of Biology, Northeastern Illinois University, 2Department of Chemistry, Northeastern Illinois University
1Institute of Materials Research and Engineering, Agency for Science, Technology and Research (A*STAR), 2School of Chemical & Biomedical Engineering, Nanyang Technological University
1Department of Chemistry, Louisiana State University