The Need for Speed in Matrix-Assisted Laser Desorption/Ionization Imaging Mass Spectrometry

Postdoc J. 2016 Mar;4(3):3-13.


Imaging mass spectrometry (IMS) has emerged as a powerful analytical tool enabling the direct molecular mapping of many types of tissue. Specifically, matrix-assisted laser desorption/ ionization (MALDI) represents one of the most broadly applicable IMS technologies. In recent years, advances in solid state laser technology, mass spectrometry instrumentation, computer technology, and experimental methodology have produced IMS systems capable of unprecedented data acquisition speeds (>50 pixels/second). In applications of this technology, throughput is an important consideration when designing an IMS experiment. As IMS becomes more widely adopted, continual improvements in experimental setups will be important to address biologically and clinically relevant time scales.

Keywords: Imaging mass spectrometry; MALDI; TOF; high-speed imaging.