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Parallel Imaging MS/MS Installation Complete at Maastricht University M4I

Installation of the recently announced parallel imaging MS/MS nanoTOF II has been completed at Maastricht University in the Netherlands. The Maastricht MultiModal Molecular Imaging Institute (M4I) is directed by Prof. Ron Heeren and will serve as a beta-test site.

The newly patented PHI MS/MS approach offers a major step forward compared to conventional TOF-TOF tandem mass spectrometry. In our approach, the TOF-SIMS spectrum (MS1) and the MS/MS spectrum (MS2) are acquired in parallel. This high speed TOF-TOF method allows direct comparison of spectra, images or depth profiles in MS1 and MS2 from the same analytical volume.

The M4I targets the development and application of state-of-the-art mass spectrometry based molecular imaging approaches for nanomedicine and biomedical research, and is one of the world leaders in high resolution molecular imaging and histology. The institute is embedded in the faculty of health, medicine and life sciences and operates in close collaboration with the pathology and general surgery department of the Maastricht University Medical Centre.

Prof. Heeren was eager to discuss the specific advantages that tandem mass spec imaging (MSI) brings to the capabilities of his current PHI nanoTOF II instrument. “We’re the first ones in the world to have this! The big advantage of tandem mass spec is that it gives us identification capabilities, and it also gives us an incredible signal to noise in MS2 – that means it is also a way to get rid of a lot of chemical noise. The third major advantage is we don’t give up MS1 signal to perform MS2 imaging.”

The release of the commercial product is scheduled for June 2016.

nanoTOF MS/MS at Maastricht University