A cell lysis buffer is a critical first component to any isolation protocol. It is fundamental to the first step of protein or nucleic acid extraction as it aids in the chemical breakdown of cell membranes and compartments, enabling target molecules to escape. There are many types of lysis buffers; most are easy to make, but most are also commercially available. They are often included in kits for immunoprecipitation, co-ip, nucleic acid isolation, and others. When using a lysis buffer for protein capture it is a good idea to add protease inhibitors prior to use in order to protect proteins.