Letter | Published:

Autoradiography of Tritium-labelled Compounds on Paper Chromatograms


THE standard method of rendering visible radioactive compounds on paper chromatograms is to place the paper against a fast X-ray film for the requisite exposure period. The energies of β-particles emitted by tritium are so low (E max = 18 keV.) that the paper itself and the inevitable air gap between paper and film absorb most, if not all, of the radiation, reducing the sensitivity of the technique below useful limits. Wilson1 has described the preparation of scintillation autographs, in which the chromatographie strip, in close contact with a fast film, is immersed in a tank of scintillation fluid; but his method cannot be applied to the study of compounds, such as steroid hormones, which are soluble in toluene, the primary solvent of most scintillating fluids.

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  1. 1

    Wilson, A. T., Nature, 182, 524 (1958)

  2. 2

    Bush, I. E., Biochem. J., 50, 370 (1952).

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