Sodium azide is regularly used for preventing bacterial and fungal growth in buffers in the pH range of 6-8. The concentration is low, therefore, I don’t see any safety issue using 0.01 mM of sodium azide in 0.25% of phosphoric acid as a HPLC solvent.
I have a question from a faculty member and I need some help with my assessment on whether this is safe to do.
“I have an experiment where I used sodium azide at very low concentrations (0.01 mM/0.000065%, to inhibit an enzyme) and I'm wondering if this is okay to go in the HPLC (the eluent is 0.25% phosphoric acid). I only inject 15 uL of my sample into the HPLC per run, but I know interactions with acid can create toxic gases, so I just wanted to check about the best way to measure these samples and what safety precautions would be recommended for these concentrations.”
In looking at the SDS there are statements such as “reacts violently with acids” and “incompatible with metals and solvents”.
With the concentration this low, will this cause a problem? If so, is there an alternative?
Laboratory Ventilation Specialist
Department of Environmental Health and Safety, Cornell University
American Chemical Society, Division of Chemical Health and Safety
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