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Veterinarian Reviewed on June 20, 2012 by Paulina Nelega, RH
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Forestal is a chemical that is commonly used in chromatography. It is a solvent that is composed of acetic acid, hydrochloric acid and water. There are many techniques in chromatography and using Forestal is just one of them.

Forestal is also beneficial in separating anthocyanins through the use of chromatography. Anthocyanins are classified as water-soluble vacuolar pigments that are considered flavonoids that contribute to the taste and appeal of foods.

History and Origin

The use of Forestal in chromatography has made major breakthroughs in separating mixtures for further use of its components. Analyzing the content of mixtures is made easy with the use of solvents; this is seen in the use of simple filter paper kept at room temperature.

Ancient Uses

The use of Forestal during ancient times was unheard of. Mixtures and solutions were mostly studied according to the various physical characteristics that it had. The history of chromatography on the other hand began in the mid 19th century when separation of plant pigments was first studied. Chlorophyll in plants was studied extensively with the use of chromatography techniques and later when many other types of separating mixtures and solutions were introduced.

Modern Uses

During modern times, Forestal is considered vital in chromatography. Using 10:30:3 ratios by volume of acetic acid, water and hydrochloric acid will yield Forestal. It is used in paper chromatography wherein a small sample of solution or mixture is placed on the dot or line of a chromatography paper. This piece of paper is sealed in a jar with a layer of solvent. The solvent rises on the chromatography paper and as it meets the line with the sample mixture or solvent a reaction will happen that will determine whether a compound is a polar or a non-polar bond.

Forestal is also a main ingredient in thin layer chromatography. It is also similar in application with paper chromatography but the thin paper may be made of adsorbent chemicals such as silica gel, cellulose, alumina and many other inert substrates. Thin layer chromatography is faster and can allow for better compound quantification and differentiation between adsorbents used.
There are also many types of chromatography developed other than using chromatography paper. Affinity chromatography, liquid chromatography and gas chromatography are just some of the most widely used processes today.

Side Effects

There are no known side effects to exposure to Forestal. This solvent may not be used in most industries but it is definitely an essential ingredient in many chemical processes in a laboratory setting. However, if you work in direct contact with chemicals such as unprocessed Forestal in a laboratory setting, it is advised to wear protective clothing like gloves, mask and goggles to prevent accidental splashes and skin exposure.

If you experience any skin irritation, itching, redness and inflammation after handling chemicals or chromatography paper, wash your hands immediately or wash any skin that has come in contact with the chemical. Never handle chemicals without any protective clothing.

If you must handle chemicals or engage in laboratory experiments that handle chromatography paper, understand the correct procedure first and familiarize yourself with the proper laboratory precautions and essential equipment before you begin to handle or work with such chemicals.

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Our Expert

Paulina Nelega, RH
Paulina Nelega, RH, has been in private practice as a Clinical Herbalist for over 15 years. She has developed and taught courses in herbal medicine, and her articles on health have appeared in numerous publications. She is very passionate about the healing power of nature. Ask Dr. Jan

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