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Techniques & Tools Mass Spectrometry, Spectroscopy

In Sync

Mass Spec’s March on Clinical Diagnostics 

Who: Thermo Fisher Scientific and Immundiagnostik.

What: Immundiagnostik’s antibody technology will be used to optimize sample preparation by isolating low-level analytes ahead of Thermo Fisher Scientific's LC-triple quadrupole mass spectrometry systems. 

Why: To create new commercial assays of complex mixtures for the diagnosis of cardiovascular diseases and bone metabolism disorders.

How: Thermo will contribute several bits of kit (high-throughput mass spectrometric immunoassay technology, TSQ Vantage triple quadrupole MS, Orbitrap Elite high-resolution accurate mass MS) while Immundiagnostik will worry about the details: identification of diagnostic parameters, validation of LC-MS/MS products and making headway on commercial development.

Texas Two-Step, Part One: The IRT 

Who: University of Texas at Arlington and Shimadzu Scientific Instruments.

What: A $25.2 million collaboration, the Institute for Research Technologies (IRT) builds on the existing Shimadzu Center for Advanced Analytical Chemistry to introduce a Center for Imaging and the new Center for Environmental, Forensic and Material Analysis. 

What draws the Japanese giant to Texas? According to Shimadzu president Shuzo Maruyama, “Shimadzu sees in UT Arlington an exciting energy, great vision and the potential to transform scientific research and education”. 

Selling point: The deal brings in analytical equipment to IRT that is not found elsewhere in North America, some of which will be made available to nearby UT Dallas and UT Southwestern Medical Center.

Texas Two-Step, Part Two: Quantifying Crude

 Who: Agilent Technologies and University of Houston’s Department of Earth and Atmospheric Sciences.

What: Agilent is providing $1 million worth of state-of-the-art analytical systems to researchers to further study the geology and composition of crude oil. 

How: Microwave plasma-atomic emission spectroscopy (MP-AES), inductively coupled plasma-optical emission spectroscopy (ICP-OES), and several advanced GC-MS instruments will all be used to study geological specimens and to separate and quantify the thousands of compounds found in crude oil.

Plus: The three-year research project will also look into currently controversial shale gas extraction – better known as fracking – to evaluate potential but also to provide insight into any detrimental environmental impact. 

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About the Author
Rich Whitworth

Rich Whitworth completed his studies in medical biochemistry at the University of Leicester, UK, in 1998. To cut a long story short, he escaped to Tokyo to spend five years working for the largest English language publisher in Japan. "Carving out a career in the megalopolis that is Tokyo changed my outlook forever. When seeing life through such a kaleidoscopic lens, it's hard not to get truly caught up in the moment." On returning to the UK, after a few false starts with grey, corporate publishers, Rich was snapped up by Texere Publishing, where he spearheaded the editorial development of The Analytical Scientist. "I feel honored to be part of the close-knit team that forged The Analytical Scientist – we've created a very fresh and forward-thinking publication." Rich is now also Content Director of Texere Publishing, the company behind The Analytical Scientist.

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