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Two new mass spectometers operational

Two new mass spectrometers have been installed and are operational in the Department of Chemistry's Mass Spectrometry Laboratory. Both were made possible through grants awarded in 2013.

The first is an Applied Biosystems-Sciex 5800 MALDI-TOF/TOF mass spectrometer [left photo] funded by a National Science Foundation Major Research Instrumentation grant awarded to Professor Michael Bowser, principal investigator, and Joseph Dalluge, Ph.D., director of the Mass Spectrometry Laboratory and co-principal investigator.

MALDI-MS is a powerful tool for analyzing a variety of different analytes including small molecules (metabolites), lipids, nucleic acids, peptides, proteins, and polymers ranging in molecular mass from 100 Da up to 100 kDa or more. For analysis by MALDI, a sample is mixed or coated with an energy-absorbing matrix and then irradiated with a laser beam (typically a Nd:Yag laser). Singly protonated (positive ionization mode) or deprotonated (negative ionization mode) molecular ions are formed and detected by a time-of-flight mass analyzer. The 5800 TOF/TOF is also capable of MALDI Imaging Mass Spectrometry (MALDI IMS). MALDI IMS is accomplished by acquiring mass spectra across material or tissue areas. A two-dimensional optical image of each material slice reveals the spatial distribution of chemicals on that slice to 10-50 um resolution. A user can then select mass values for compounds of interest and “stain” the image with mass-specific colors. Each pixel on the color-coded image contains a detailed mass spectral analysis of compounds localized at that spot.

The second is a Fluidigm CyTOF2 Mass Cytometer [right photo] funded through a University of Minnesota Office of the Vice President for Research Infrastructure Grant awarded to Professor Edgar Arriaga, principal investigator.

Mass Cytometry combines the advantages of single cell high speed analysis common to conventional flow cytometry with the ability to resolve more than 100 metal probes with minimal signal overlap common to atomic mass spectroscopy, thereby providing researchers with an unparalleled ability to phenotypically and functionally profile cells from normal and diseased states.

For additional information, to schedule training, or to discuss research collaborations using these instruments, contact Joe Dalluge.