The mass spectrometry facility operates a variety of mass spectrometry instrumentation, each with advantages for specific types of analyses. If you have a specific project in mind, contact us to discuss possible options. The following list highlights some of the instrumentation and example applications. Of course, we are always interested in new applications, so contact us with specialized requests.

Agilent 6340 Ion Trap with 1100 nano-HPLC

The mass spectrometry facility operates two identical ion traps for specialty experiments. These systems are available with the ChipCube source, which provides nanospray performance in a convenient platform: the enrichment column, selection valve, tubing, analytical column, and emitter are all packaged into a removable microfluidics chip. This permits every user to have their own dedicated, portable chromatography setup, reducing problems with carryover and downtime common to open-access facilities. The 6340 instruments are equipped with electron-transfer-dissociation fragmentation (ETD), providing MS/MS data for peptides with delicate post-translational modifications.  In addition to the ChipCube sample interface, the 6340 ion traps can also be configured with a traditional electrospray source for robust analysis.

 Bruker micrOTOF with Agilent 1290 UHPLC

The micrOTOF is an electrospray ionization (ESI) instrument with a time-of-flight (TOF) detector. The ESI source is a "gentle" ionization method, which makes it possible to analyze extremely large molecules such as proteins. The TOF mass analyzer gives high mass accuracy (<5 ppm) and resolution (10,000) for confirmation of molecular formula and accurate protein/peptide fragment assignment. The Agilent 1290 UHPLC delivers solvent flow rates between 10 microliters and 1000 microliters per minute, appropriate for typical analytical HPLC analyses as well as rapid high-performance UHPLC protocols. The micrOTOF is regularly used for evaluating recombinant proteins, providing accurate mass for novel organic synthesis products, quantitation of known metabolites, and for biophysical studies such as hydrogen-deuterium exchange of proteins.

Agilent 6520 Q-TOF with Agilent 1100 nano-HPLC

Like the micrOTOF, the 6520 QTOF has an ESI source and TOF analyzer, but it has expanded functionality from several unique features. The QTOF is capable of MS/MS fragmentation, which is invaluable for determining the identification of unknown compounds. The 6520 also has improved resolution compared to the micrOTOF, and can be equipped with either 1290 UHPLC for rapid high-performance chromatography or 1100 nano-HPLC with ChipCube.  When used in the nano-HPLC/ChipCube configuration, the 6520 QTOF is ideal for high-sensitivity identification of proteins.

  Agilent 6538 Q-TOF with Agilent 1290 UHPLC

The 6538 QTOF is an ultrahigh resolution mass analyzer that can be operated in high-resolution or high dynamic range modes. When interfaced with the 1290 ultrahigh pressure HPLC this system is ideal for quantitative analysis of complex metabolite extracts.  Metabolomics data analysis is supported by XCMS, metaXCMS, MassHunter and MassProfilerPro software packages, and the METLIN database.

 Bruker maXis Impact with Dionex 3000 nano-uHPLC

For applications which require additional performance or features, the maXs offers extremely high mass accuracy, resolution, sensitivity, dynamic range, and speed.  By using a TOF mass analyzer, the maXis shares the rapid-chromatography capabilities of the 6520, but adds improved resolution and accuracy, sensitivity-enhancing ion funnel optics, and a high-throughput CaptiveSpray ionization source.  To complement the technical capabilities of the maXis, the sample introduction is performed with a splitterless Dionex nano-UHPLC capable of analyzing tens of thousands of compounds in a single run: this system is excellent for shotgun proteomics.

 Bruker Autoflex

MALDI analyses are currently conducted on a Bruker Autoflex. This instrument is extremely functional for applications ranging from peptide identification to large polymer analysis. The Autoflex has MS/MS capabilities and can be used in an automated mode to collect MS and MS/MS data. In addition, the Autoflex can perform MALDI imaging: cross sections of tissue, environmental, and fabricated samples can be analyzed to obtain 4D datasets to quantify individual compounds spatially distributed through the sample.  MALDI-TOF instruments provide an extremely low entry barrier for new users and are ideally suited for high-throughput screening.

 GC-MS Agilent and Shimadzu instruments

For GC analyses, we have two systems. An Agilent GCMS 5975 XL EI/CI MSD/DS and a Shimadzu QP-2010 GC with quadrapole mass analyzer. Both instruments have NIST compound libraries for identification of unknown molecules. The Agilent GCMS system also has MassHunter Data Analysis for GCMS and the new Fiehn GC/MS Metabolomics RTL Library.

 Waters Synapt G2S-i Q-TOF with ion mobility

The Synapt QTOF is a next generation electrospray TOF instrument and is our most recent acquisition. In addition to high mass accuracy and resolution, the Synapt is equipped with an ion mobility chamber.  Ion mobility measurements facilitate determenation of molecular cross-sectional area. This can be used to detect the difference between structural isomers of a single chemical formula, measure the folded or unfolded state of proteins, and detect assembly states of macromolecular complexes.  Sample introduction can be performed via classic electrospray, online nanospray with direct infusion or HPLC, and offline nanospray using as little as microliters of sample.  The high performance, sensitivity, and ion mobility capability of the Synapt makes it unrivaled for the biophysical study of complex systems.

 2D Gel DIGE and Image Analysis Equipment

 The Facility possesses a full range of gel electrophoresis equipment including two DALT 2, 24cm gel tanks with capacity for 12 gels and a 24cm, six gel tank. Scanners include the GE Typhoon Trio (TM) variable mode scanner / imager with advanced spot evaluation software and a state of the art hyper-spectral imager for full wavelength data collection on a pixel by pixel basis.