Andrew Meehan

It's been 20 years since Hillenkamp and Karas developed MALDI. In that time, the soft ionization method, coupled with time-of-flight (TOF) mass spectrometry, has distinguished itself as the enabling technology of proteomics. If you need to identify the proteins in a two-dimensional gel electrophoresis spot, or identify and quantify the relative abundance of thousands of proteins in a cell lysate, take a look at MALDI-TOF.

In 2002 Applied Biosystems began offering a commercial MALDI-tandem time-of-flight system, the 4700 MALDI TOF/TOF Analyzer. In a tandem mass spectrometer, ions are mass analyzed just as they would be in a standard instrument. The difference is that users can select particular ions for further analysis, in which the ions are fragmented and analyzed again in the second mass analyzer. The result is sequence information – and greater confidence in protein assignments.

This year, with its partner MDS SCIEX, Applied Biosystems released...

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