freeze-dryingmedical dictionary

<technique>

Method commonly adopted to produce a dry and stable form of biological material that has not been seriously denatured.

By freezing the specimen, often with liquid nitrogen and then subliming water from the specimen under vacuum, proteins are left in reasonably native form and can usually be rehydrated to an active state. Since the freeze dried material will store without refrigeration for long periods, it is a convenient method for holding back up or reference material or for the distribution of antibiotics, vaccines etc.

Synonyms: lyophilization.

(18 Sep 2002)

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