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Microsecond Time-Resolved Mass Spectrometry


At this time the predominant method for a pharmaceutical chemist to characterize reaction kinetics is to employ spectroscopy. The main issue with this technique is that spectroscopy produces an absorption/Emission spectrum and it is possible for multiple different compounds to have the same spectrum peak, making it difficult to differentiate. Microsecond Time-Resolved Mass-Spectrometry was developed to collect high time resolution and chemical specificity for analysis of biochemical reactions. A T-mixer allows two separate chemicals in solution to be mixed together to form a free high-speed jet stream. Along the liquid jet, DESI spray ionizes the stream and the resulting ions are then monitored by the MS. The distance the jet travels is indicative of reaction time, so this technology is capable of collecting mass spectra at different time points in the reaction.



A working prototype of this technology has been developed. A higher time resolution in microsecond timescale is thought to be possible and is currently being tested. Also, other chemical and biological reactions are being explored for kinetics investigation. A provisional patent application has been filed; licensing opportunities are available

OU Ref: 10004 View PDF

Issued Patent:


Hao Chen, Ph.D. Associate Fellow, Edison Biotechnology Institute
Director, Bioanalytics Center
Associate Professor, Chemistry and Biochemistry