The type of HPLC column used for small molecule analysis will be dictated at least in part by the chemical nature of the compounds of interest. Recent literature suggests that the Aminex polystyrene-divinylbenzene ion exchange resins are applicable to a wide variety of water soluble and partially water soluble small organic compounds. As illustrated in Figure 1.1, Aminex columns are complementary to reversed phase columns. Certain classes of water insoluble or sparingly water soluble compounds are best separated on reversed phase columns, while other water soluble compounds such as sugars, alcohols, and short chain organic acids are better separated on the ion exchange resins. However, there is a large group of compounds in the middle range of solubility that are amenable to analysis on both the Aminex and reversed phase columns.
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