Specific laboratory conditions are necessary for the proper handling and preservation of peptides. Though they occur naturally in protein-rich environments, there are important guidelines on how to store and care for peptides. Peptide storage must meet particular conditions to maintain stability and integrity.

Storage and shelf-life depend on the peptide form (lyophilization or alternative solutions) and the storage environment. One of the greatest threats to peptide solutions is moisture. The storage conditions and handling tips are there to avoid their interaction with moisture and high temperature as much as possible.


Peptides must be kept in a cool, dry storage area. Contact with moisture and heat can significantly impair the stability of solid peptides over a long period of time. Without proper refrigeration and storage, chemical breakdown will result from the peptide’s contact with moisture, a process known as hydrolysis. In addition, for even better protection, they should also be stored away from light and at a maximum temperature of about 40° Fahrenheit (4.4° Celsius).

Shelf Life

Once the desired amount is extracted, the vial should be re-sealed immediately after – ideally under a dry, inert gas environment – and placed back in the cold. Otherwise, the peptide has only about 24 hours before it starts degrading. Peptides should not be frequently frozen and thawed, as that can cause condensation, which will in turn compromise the integrity of the solution.

The shelf-life of peptides depends on how they are stored and maintained. At 40°F (4.4°C), the solution can last about 3 weeks. However, if it is in a freeze-dried state, stored in a dry environment, and protected from light and moisture, at a temperature of -4°F (-20°C), the peptide can last about a year.


For long-term storage, peptides may be frozen. They should be kept under -4°F (-20°C), regardless of their form, though freeze-dried or lyophilized peptides last longer.

Moisture Protection

Since moisture can lead to the chemical breakdown of the peptides, it is best to let them warm to room temperature very gradually – preferably in a desiccator – in order to prevent condensation from occurring. A desiccator is usually a glass container holding a drying agent for the purpose of removing moisture to protect the product from any water vapor in the air.

If they cannot be properly guarded from moisture, it is best to purchase smaller vials, so that they can be used quicker and thus have fewer environmental changes, i.e. fewer moves in and out of cold storage.

Handling becomes a bit more complex with larger vials, as they are likely to be moved in and out of storage a greater number of times. Before returning the vial to storage, weigh it in a glove box to avoid oxygen exposure and, whenever possible, cover or blanket the vial with an inert gas such as argon or nitrogen. If that’s not possible, quickly weigh the product and tightly close the lid to minimize exposure to air.


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