Optimization strategies for off-line two-dimensional liquid chromatography

Krisztián Horváth, Jacob Fairchild, Georges Guiochon

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

40 Citations (Scopus)


A step by step strategy of optimization of comprehensive off-line two-dimensional liquid chromatography (2D-LC) separations is proposed. The goal of an optimization process in the separation sciences is either to achieve a given resolution (a target peak capacity in 2D-LC) within as short a time as possible or to reach the highest possible resolution in a given analysis time. The proposed method takes into account the characteristics of the columns used in the first and the second dimension and the number of fractions of the first dimension eluent that should be collected. The effect of the time spent during the analysis on the second dimension column to carry out necessary tasks that are not the separation itself (called the additional time) on the maximum peak capacity that is achievable was carefully investigated. It was shown that (1) an increase in the peak capacity of the first dimension column combined with the collection of larger volume fractions permits a significant reduction of the time needed to achieve the desired peak capacity; and (2) there is an optimum fraction collection ratio (or number of collected fractions per peak) which yields the target peak capacity in the minimum time. The proposed strategy was used for the optimization of the separation of samples of BSA tryptic digest by an off-line 2D-LC using an SCX ⊗ RP-HPLC method. As a result of this optimization, a peak capacity of 4000 could be achieved in about 5 h with the two columns available. The time needed for the optimized analysis was less than two thirds of the analysis time that would have been needed had the conventional rule of thumb of sample collection in comprehensive on-line 2D-LC (4 samples/peak) been followed.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2511-2518
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Chromatography A
Issue number12
Publication statusPublished - Mar 20 2009


  • BSA
  • Off-line two-dimensional chromatography
  • Optimization
  • Reversed-phase liquid chromatography
  • Strong cation-exchange chromatography
  • Tryptic digest
  • Two-dimensional chromatography

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Analytical Chemistry
  • Biochemistry
  • Organic Chemistry

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