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isotope dilution

n. (context chemistry English) Any technique that involves the addition to a sample of an isotopically labelled compound.

Isotope dilution

Isotope dilution analysis is a method of determining the quantity of chemical substances. In its most simple conception, the method of isotope dilution comprises the addition of known amounts of isotopically-enriched substance to the analyzed sample. Mixing of the isotopic standard with the sample effectively "dilutes" the isotopic enrichment of the standard and this forms the basis for the isotope dilution method. Isotope dilution is classified as a method of internal standardisation, because the standard (isotopically-enriched form of analyte) is added directly to the sample. In addition, unlike traditional analytical methods which rely on signal intensity, isotope dilution employs signal ratios. Owing to both of these advantages, the method of isotope dilution is regarded among chemistry measurement methods of the highest metrological standing.