While you may not do anything with chromatography in your personal life, this advanced chemistry touches your world in ways you likely don’t realize. Whether or not you understand how chromatography works, you should know it’s essential to supporting some of our most basic functions of life. Read more about the five uses for chromatography in our everyday lives to understand how this science impacts you.
The pharmaceutical industry has been using chromatography for the past several years to develop important vaccines quickly. The precision allowed by this technology helps scientists determine which antibodies will fight certain diseases. For instance, scientists used chromatography to create the vaccine for Ebola, and HPLC pumps were instrumental in developing the new mNRA vaccines being used for COVID-19.
Advances in science are important in the world of forensics not only for helping to catch criminals but also to help clear innocent people of crimes they did not commit. Judges often overturn sentences due to evidence that suggests DNA from blood or other bodily fluid samples could not have come from an individual who has been kept behind bars. With chromatography, scientists can more accurately analyze blood samples to match DNA.
Testing Food Samples
We use chromatography to test food samples because previous methods haven’t been accurate enough. The technology can detect the composition of food at any stage and is used to determine if products meet FDA requirements. Furthermore, testing determines if processed foods contain the ingredients listed. For instance, in 2013, horse meat was detected in beef products which fueled a rise in people demanding assurance that their food matched the label.
Purifying Drinking Water
Wastewater treatment plants use a combination of chemicals to clean the water before they return it to the system and your home. Many of the chemicals are toxic and must be removed from the water prior to releasing it to the environment. Using HPLC helps technicians ensure that the water is free of harmful toxins that could harm you and the environment.
Fun Fact: Chromatography is used to manufacture beverages, such as some alcoholic drinks; it helps to ensure a consistent product.
Drug testing is especially important in the sports world to ensure that athletes aren’t using drugs to enhance their performance. With chromatography, coaches and scientists can test athletes’ blood to ensure it’s clean. The advanced technology can detect trace amounts of impurities.
Everybody eats and drinks and most people will get a vaccine at some point in their lives. The benefits of chromatography are all around you if you know where to look. Share the five uses for chromatography in our everyday lives with your friends and family and let them know that science is keeping them safe.