Cell Lysis Techniques: Why Homogenization Excels

Posted by David Shechter on Sep 7, 2016 11:30:00 AM

cell lysisCell lysis (or cell disruption) is the rupture of the cell membrane resulting in the release of cell contents, and the subsequent death of the cell. The fluid containing the contents of lysed cells is called a lysate.

Cell lysis is used in laboratories to separate the intracellular contents, e.g. in DNA or RNA extraction. Cell lysis is also a key component in protein purification. Protein purification involves a series of processes to isolate one or a few proteins from the rest of the lysate.

Cell lysis disturbs the carefully controlled cellular environment, allowing for the possibility of damage to the intracellular contents. Proteases (enzymes that break down proteins) are also released upon cell lysis, so the process should be kept quick, the lysate must be kept cool, or protease inhibitors should be added to the lysis buffer.

Mechanical cell lysis techniques include high shear mixing, traditional homogenization, sonication, grinding, and high pressure homogenization. Chemical cell lysis techniques include osmotic lysis, the use of detergents, chelating agents, or chaotropic agents.

Key Factors for Successful Cell Lysis Techniques:

  • Intracellular proteins should be accessible for extraction and solubilization.
  • The process should be flexible, as different cells require different cell lysis strategies.
  • The process should be relatively easy to perform.
  • The ideal technique results in a high yield in a short time.
  • Results should be consistently reproducible and scalable.

High Pressure Homogenization: A Superior Cell Lysis Technique

DeBEE high pressure homogenizers are able to gently lyse a wide variety of cells. This is because our proprietary technology allows you to control the process and vary the pressure according to cell type. Cells are ruptured, but without disturbing the valuable intracellular material within.

Our modular equipment allows for a flexible process and independent control of pressure, flow, cavitation, impact, shear, and process duration. At the heart of our proprietary technology is our BEE homogenizing cell. This supports powerful, repeated use of ALL mixing forces (turbulence, cavitation, shear and impact). Our equipment is easy to use, produces better results in fewer passes, and results are always scalable.

BEE: “Best Emulsifying Equipment”

At BEE International, we are passionate about product innovation and are committed to providing the best possible results for your product or application. We are experienced in every aspect of high energy mixing; and all of our equipment reflect our dedication to advancing the technology of homogenization. 

Contact us to learn more about our cell lysis solutions, and check out our free eBook: 7 Key Factors to Consider When Choosing a Cell Lysis Method.

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Cell Lysis