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NYSCC Award Provides New Lipid Analysis Capabilities

A $11,000 NYSCC grant was used this month to install and commission a high-performance thin-layer chromatography (HPTLC) instrument.

The study of the lipids in hair and skin is of great interest to cosmetic and pharmaceutical scientists. This is for many different reasons. For example, the unique intercellular lipids in the stratum corneum are vital for skin barrier function, and are often impaired in diseased skin; the lipids in sebum, amongst many other functions, help create a unique micro-environment on our scalp, and are linked to problems such as dandruff; and the lipids in the hair fibre act as a flexible glue, holding the whole structure together. The loss of fibre lipids with daily washing and chemical treatments can increase hair breakage. TRI scientists have already started probing skin, scalp and hair lipids using advanced spectroscopic techniques. HPTLC will allow the team to explore the chemical composition of the lipids in even more depth.

The CAMAG HPTLC instrument was kindly donated by Johnson & Johnson, a TRI member company. The cost of installing and commissioning the equipment was provided by the NYSCC in a $11,000 education grant, awarded to TRI in December 2019 at the SCC Scientific Meeting and Technology Showcase in New York (Alison Robinson from TRI is pictured receiving our award). This generous support from Johnson & Johnson and NYSCC will help take TRI to a whole new level in lipid analysis and lipidomics. Please visit our website for more information, or if you are interested in working with us to explore this fascinating area.

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