The Microcal calorimeter is an extremely sensitive instrument for detecting the heat released or absorbed during a chemical reaction, both by isothermal titration calorimetry (ITC) and by differential scanning calorimetry (DSC). The heats measured can then be used to calculate a variety of thermodynamic properties for any chemical process, including the enthalpy, entropy, and free energy, as well as the equilibrium constant. The Department currently has two microcalorimeters, one for carrying out ITC measurements and the other for DSC measuremements. These instruments are used in the biochemistry and physical chemistry teaching laboratories as well as in several research projects, including a study of the interaction between peptides and phospholipid membranes as a model for cholesterol binding and its impact on heart disease (Dr. Rod Wigent). If you would like more information about the capabilities of this instrument, please contact Dr. Rod Wigent.