Plant Pigment Detection

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Plant Pigment Detection Inquiry

Plant pigments are macromolecules produced by specific plant cells. Being able to absorb lights of specified wavelengths, plant pigments play important roles in capturing energy from sunlight and to power the chemical reactions (i.e., photosynthesis) in plant cells.

Natural occurring plant pigments possess different structures and biochemical features. Accordingly, they are responsible for the capture of lights with different wavelengths. So far, the most well-characterized plant pigments are:

  • Chlorophyll: as the major type of plant pigment, chlorophyll is required for photosynthesis.  It mainly absorbs yellow and blue lights, and therefore gives the plant green color. Two naturally existing chlorophyll forms are chlorophyll a and chlorophyll b.
  • Carotenoid: absorbs wavelengths of 400-500 nm (violet to green) and give the plant yellow, orange or red color.
  • Anthocyanin: water soluble pigment whose color varies from red to blue, depending on pH.
  • Betalain: gives the plant a yellow or deep red color as that in beets.

Aside from absorbing light, pigments in plants, especially those in flowers, also help attract insects and animals by displaying a colorful image. More importantly, plant pigments have high industrial values, especially for the food production as they are not only important resources for food formulation, but also have desirable nutritional values. For example, carotenoid contains rich vitamin A, which is beneficial for vision improvement and skin protection. Therefore, accurate evaluation of plant pigments is critical for both plant growth regulation and industrial applications.

Lifeasible is a highly-reputed plant biotechnology company with a long history of plant biochemical studies. We provide a diversified analytical approaches for rapid and precise quantification and identification of different plant pigments.

  • Spectroscopic methods: provide quick crude identification of pigments in an extract or mixture. Multiple spectroscopic methods are available at Lifeasible:
    • Absorbance spectroscopy: based on differential absorbance spectra of different plant pigments, this is the simplest way to identify and quantify major pigments in a given sample.
    • Fluorescence spectroscopy: with adjustable wavelength settings, this method allows targeted detection of pigments by selective excitation.
    • Infrared spectroscopy: allows identification of pigments based on particular structural features.
  • Chromatographic methods: unlike spectroscopic methods, which are performed within crude extractions, chromatography allows separation of individual components from a mixture, and therefore gives higher resolutions.
    • Open column: open columns can be filled with calcium hydroxide or hydroxylapatite for the separation of different types of plant pigments.
    • Thin-layer chromatography (TLC): feasible for separating compounds with distinguished structures, TLC can also be used as a pre-treatment for cleaning of total sample extractions.
    • High-performance liquid chromatography (HPLC): requiring minimal sample preparation, HPLC ensures precise detection with high sensitivity, high resolution and less time cost.
  • Mass spectrometry (MS): modern MS technology is becoming increasingly popular for the characterization of plant pigments, as it allows precise, efficient identification and quantification within a single sample set.

With years of experience in plant pigment analysis, Lifeasible is devoted to providing our customers with the most cutting-edge technologies and reliable solutions. In order to meet the needs from different projects and to achieve the best-quality data for your project, we offer customized services for specialized experimental purposes. For example, we are capable of establishing and optimizing spectroscopic standards, equation sets, as well as determining absorbance coefficients for specific spectroscopic assays. Our large in-house selection of reverse-phase columns (C8, C18, C30, π-NAP, cholester, etc.) and auxiliary apparatuses ensures that each project is supported with the most optimal equipment. Last but not least, we offer featured one-stop services that cover every step from sample to data, which saves you time, labor and money. Welcome to contact us for further information, questions, or inquiries.