In a new development, scientists have created a new method for mapping proteins. This could lead to new discoveries for diseases through biological cell and tissue analysis, and the development of new materials that can be used for next generation medical devices and drug delivery systems.
The first in situ matrix-and – label free assignment of intact proteins is facilitated by state-of-the-art 3-D OrbiSIMS instrument used by scientists at the University of Nottingham in collaboration with the National Physical Laboratory and the University of Birmingham.
Functional Alterations in Experimentation Instrument facilitates study
In fact, the University of Nottingham is the world’s first to own a 3-D OrbiSIMS instrument. The instrument features to facilitate an unparalleled level of mass spectral molecular analysis for a host of materials. In addition, the facility at Nottingham is also equipped for high-pressure freezing cryo-preparation requirements. This enables biological samples to be maintained as close to their native state, thereby complementing the more commonly applied but more disruptive sample fixation and freeze drying.
Meanwhile, combining surface sensitivity with high mass/spatial resolution and a depth profiling sputtering beam, the resultant instrument is extremely powerful for 3-D chemical analysis, demonstrates the recent work.
The design and innovation of next generation biomaterials is underpinned by the ability for accurate characterization of tissue and materials. The unpicking of chemical complexity of such system is the challenge for scientists working in this area. To demonstrate the protein analysis of the approach, extreme examples were used to illustrate the specificity and sensitivity. This involved chemically mapping a protein monolayer and distribution of specific protein on the human skin respectively.