The Future of AUC: unbound potential once more

Now nearly a century old, AUC has certainly earned the title classical technique.Centrifugation AUC Timeline

Today, AUC has applications in virtually any scientific discipline, including:

  • Cell biology
  • Molecular biology
  • Biochemistry
  • Immunology
  • Biophysics
  • Physical chemistry
  • Colloid chemistry
  • Biotechnology
  • Biomaterials
  • Nanoparticles and others

While the majority of AUC experiments are conducted using sedimentation velocity (SV) or long-column sedimentation equilibrium (SE) methods, numerous specialized techniques have also been developed, including:

  • Analytical zone sedimentation
  • Difference sedimentation
  • Synthetic boundary measurements
  • Short-column techniques 21

A mid-2017 PubMed search reveals nearly 4,000 published papers that reference AUC.

That’s an average of more than 42 papers a years since Théodor Svedberg built the world’s first analytical ultracentrifuge in 1923.

Not bad for an analytical technique that’s seen its share of highs and lows during the ensuing nine decades.

As for the next nine decades, it’s onward and upward for AUC.

Recommended reading:

  • An Improved Air-Driven Type Of Ultracentrifuge For Molecular Sedimentation, by E.G. Pickels and J.H. Bauer.
  • The Life of a Virus: Tobacco Mosaic Virus as an Experimental Model, 1930-1965, by Angela N. H. Creager.
  • Instruments of Science – An Historical Encyclopedia (Garland Encyclopedias in the History of Science), edited by R. Bud and D. Warner.
  • Howard Schachman, “University of California Professor of Molecular Biology: Discussions of His Research Over His Scientific Career From the 1940s Until 2010,” by Sondra Schlesinger.
  • Biophysical Characterization of Proteins in Developing Biopharmaceuticals, edited by Damian J. Houde and Steven A. Berkowitz.
  • Sedimentation Velocity Analytical Ultracentrifugation: Discrete Species and Size-Distributions of Macromolecules and Particles, by Peter Schuck.
  • Analytical Ultracentrifugation: Techniques and Methods, edited by David Scott, Stephen E. Harding and Arthur Rowe.


21 Scott D, Harding SE, Rowe A, editors. Analytical Ultracentrifugation: Techniques and Methods. 1st ed. London: Royal Society of Chemistry; 2005.

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