The absolute need to improve the separating power of liquid chromatography, especially for multi-constituent biological samples, is becoming increasingly evident. In response, over the past few years, there has been a great deal of interest in the development of two-dimensional liquid chromatography (2DLC). Just as 1DLC is preferred to 1DGC based on its compatibility with biological materials we believe that ultimately 2DLC will be preferred to the much more highly developed 2DGC for such samples. The huge advantage of 2D chromatographic techniques over 1D methods is inherent in the tremendous potential increase in peak capacity (resolving power). This is especially true of comprehensive 2D chromatography wherein it is possible, under ideal conditions, to obtain a total peak capacity equal to the product of the peak capacities of the first and second dimension separations. However, the very long timescale (typically several hours to tens of hours) of comprehensive 2DLC is clearly its chief drawback. Recent advances in the use of higher temperatures to speed up isocratic and gradient elution liquid chromatography have been used to decrease the time needed to do the second dimension LC separation of 2DLC to about 20 s for a full gradient elution run. Thus, fast, high temperature LC is becoming a very promising technique. Peak capacities of over 2000 and rates of peak capacity production of nearly 1 peak/s have been achieved. In consequence, many real samples showing more than 200 peaks with signal to noise ratios of better than 10:1 have been run in total times of under 30 min. This report is not intended to be a comprehensive review of 2DLC, but is deliberately focused on the issues involved in doing fast 2DLC by means of elevating the column temperature; however, many issues of broader applicability will be discussed.
Bibliographical noteFunding Information:
This work was supported by a grant from the National Institute of Health (GM54585), Fellowship from the American Chemical Society Division of Analytical Chemistry to Dwight Stoll and various gifts from Agilent Technology and ZirChrom Separations. The authors also wish to thank Adam Schellinger and Joe Davis for many helpful discussions.
- Data analysis
- Fast HPLC
- Gradient elution
- High temperature
- Peak capacity
- Speed in LC
- Two-dimensional chromatography