In this work, the effects of sodium dodecyl sulfate (SDS) concentrations on retention, separation selectivity, peak shapes and systems efficiency were investigated. Herein, the retention data for 11 alkaloids were determined on an RP18 silica column with mobile phases containing methanol as organic modifier, with acetate buffer at pH 3.5, and, subsequently, with the addition of sodium dodecyl sulfate (SDS). The results of this study indicate that the retention of alkaloids decreases with the increase of SDS concentration in the mobile phase. The increase of SDS concentration, however, leads to the significantly improvement of peak symmetry and the increase of theoretical plate number in all cases. The best system efficiency for most of the investigated alkaloids was obtained in a mobile phase containing 0.1 M SDS, while most symmetrical peaks were obtained through the addition of 0.3 M of SDS to the mobile phase.
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