A solute enhanced phase partition method is described for the measurement of the binding of drugs to nucleic acids. The inclusion of a solute which acts as a phase transfer reagent allows one to enhance the solubility of charged molecules in organic solvents by as much as three orders of magnitude. This development increases the utility of partition analysis as a general method for studying the interaction of small molecules with macromolecules. Solute enhanced partition analysis (SEPA) has been used to measure the DNA binding of positively charged drugs at very low levels of drug binding, where we have observed cooperative binding of daunorubicin to calf thymus DNA. © 1981.