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Analysis of Liquid Samples By Desorption Electrospray Ionization-Mass Spectrometry


Mass Spectrometry (MS) works by converting molecules into ions which can then be detected and analyzed. DESI-MS applications were previously restricted to analyzing solid samples on surfaces. Researchers at Ohio University have discovered a novel application of DESI by fostering the technology to analyze liquid samples. In this technique, titled as liquid sample desorption electrospray ionization mass spectrometry (LS-DESI-MS), liquid samples such as urine are driven to the surface where ionization occurs. In addition, the technology can be modified to provide a platform where ionic reactions occur and could be used with separation techniques such as electrophoresis and micro-fluids for widespread applications.

Ion sprayer and liquid sample


The new technique was successfully tested by using several types of amino acids, peptides, protein digests and proteins as well as drug-containing urine samples its high sensitivity, selectivity and speed for chemical analysis. Additional research activities may be needed to couple the proposed technique to chromatography, electrophoresis and microfluidics to facilitate high quality of separation in sample analysis. chemical imaging using LS-DESI-MS is another sought after research area. The patent for the proposed technology is 7,915,579. Licensing opportunities are available.

OU Ref: 08023 View PDF

Issued Patent: 7,915,579


Hao Chen, Ph.D. received his doctoral degree in Chemistry from Purdue University in 2005. He is an associate professor in chemistry at Ohio University. Dr. Chen performs research on organic and biological mass spectrometry for bioanalysis and instrument development. He has received over $800,000 in research funding and has published over 60 journal papers.