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Ammonium acetate is used for routine precipitation of nucleic acids, and is especially useful for reducing the coprecipitation of unwanted dNTPs and contaminating oligosaccharides. It is used as an important reagent for studying molecular biology, biological buffers, reagents and DNA and RNA purification. It is a popular buffer for mobile phases for HPLC with ESLD detection, for ESI mass spectrometry of proteins and other molecules, and has been used to replace cell buffers with non-volitile salts. Ammonium acetate is also used in protein studies and protein preparation. It can be used in the protein purification steps of dialysis to remove contaminants through diffusion and, when combined with distilled water, as a protein precipitating agent. In organic chemistry, ammonium acetate solution is useful as a catalyst in the Knoevenagel condensation and as a source of ammonia in the Borch reaction. Additionally, it is occasionally used commercially as a biodegradable de-icing agent and as an additive in food as an acidity regulator.
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