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Ficoll® PM 400

Type 400

Polysucrose 400
CAS Number:
MDL number:


Type 400

Quality Level



optical activity

[α]20/D 56.5°, c = 1% (w/v) in water


H2O: 100 mg/mL, clear to slightly hazy, colorless to faintly yellow

storage temp.

room temp

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General description

Ficoll 400 is a highly branched polymer formed by the copolymerization of sucrose and epichlorohydrin. Ficoll 400 is completely non-ionic. Because of the abundance of hydroxyl groups, Ficoll 400 is very hydrophilic and extremely water-soluble. The most common application for Ficoll 400 is as a density gradient medium for the separation and isolation of eukaryotic cells, organelles and bacterial cells. Density ranges up to 1.2 g/ml can be attained. It has also been utilized in a variety of other applications.


Ficoll® PM 400 is used together with sodium diatrizoate (Paque) to create Ficoll-Paque a density mixture used for the separation of cells and organelles, especially blood derived lymphocytes and monocytes. It may be used in tissue engineering and macromolecular conformation research for the development, evaluation and use of macromolecular crowding (MMC) systems and configurations. Ficoll PM-400 may be used in cell freeze-drying research.
Used for cell separation and organelle isolation.


10, 25, 50, 250 g in poly bottle

Features and Benefits

Because of the high molecular weight and low content of dialyzable material, Ficoll has a much lower permeability towards cell membranes than sucrose. Therefore, cells can be expected to collect at a lower density in Ficoll gradients than in sucrose gradients. Because of its low membrane permeability and low osmotic pressure, separations in Ficoll normally result in better preservation of cell function and morphology.

Other Notes

A nonionic synthetic polymer of sucrose.

Preparation Note

Concentrations of 50% (w/v) can be attained in water. Ficoll should be added slowly with constant stirring.
Sigma tests the solubility of Ficoll 400 at 1 g in 10 ml of deionized water yielding a clear to slightly hazy, colorless to faint yellow solution. Ficoll is stable in alkaline and neutral solutions. At pH values below 3, it is rapidly hydrolyzed, particularly at elevated temperatures. Ficoll can be sterilized by autoclaving at a neutral pH, at 110oC for 30 minutes. Strong oxidizing and reducing agents are to be avoided.

Legal Information

Ficoll is a registered trademark of Cytiva

Storage Class Code

13 - Non Combustible Solids



Flash Point(F)

Not applicable

Flash Point(C)

Not applicable

Personal Protective Equipment

dust mask type N95 (US), Eyeshields, Gloves

Certificate of Analysis

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Certificate of Origin

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