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Hoffmann, R. A wiki for the life sciences where authorship matters. Nature Genetics (2008)

Glass-forming tendency and stability of the amorphous state in the aqueous solutions of linear polyalcohols with four carbons. I. Binary systems water-polyalcohol.

All the aqueous solutions of linear saturated polyalcohols with four carbons have been investigated at low temperature. Only ice has been observed in the solutions of 1,3-butanediol and 1,2,3- and 1,2,4-butanetriol. For same solute concentration, the glass-forming tendency on cooling is highest with 2,3-butanediol, where it is comparable to that with 1,2-propanediol, the best solute reported to date. However, the quantity of ice and hydrate crystallized is particularly high on slow cooling or on subsequent rewarming. The highest stability of the amorphous state is observed on rewarming the 1,2-butanediol and 1,3-butanediol solutions. With respect to this property, these compounds come just after 1,2-propanediol and before all the other compounds studied so far. They are followed by dimethylsulfoxide and 1,2,3-butanetriol. The glass-forming tendency of the 1,3-butanediol solutions is also very high; it is third only to that of 1,2-propanediol and 2,3-butanediol. The glass-forming tendency is a little smaller with 1,2-butanediol, but it is cubic instead of ordinary hexagonal ice which crystallizes on cooling rapidly with 35% 1,2-butanediol. Cubic ice is thought to be innocuous. A gigantic glass transition is observed with 45% of this strange solute. 1,4-Butanediol, 45% also favors cubic ice greatly. Therefore, 1,2- and 1,3-butanediol with comparable physical properties are perhaps as interesting as 1,2-propanediol for cryopreservation of cells or organs by complete vitrification. Together with 1,2-propanediol, 1,2- and 1,3-butanetriol, 1,2,3-butanetriol, and perhaps 2,3-butanediol provide an interesting battery of solutions for cryopreservation by vitrification.[1]


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