ICR Science Highlights

23 June 2021

Makeup of Dissolved Organic Matter in Arctic Rivers

Researchers share new insights on the role of seasonality in dissolved organic matter (DOM) composition in large Arctic rivers. 

10 June 2021

FAIR MagLab Data Empowers 'Data Users'

A new type of MagLab user has emerged: A Data User – who accesses MagLab data from public data repositories to advance independent research goals. In this highlight, we feature Data Users working to develop software for improved identification of intact proteins by high resolution mass spectrometry (AKA - top-down proteomics). The original dataset was published in 2017 as a benchmark study on the performance of the 21T FT-ICR system for top-down proteomic analysis of colorectal cancer cells. It has since been cited in a poster and two papers for testing new data analysis algorithms and software packages, demonstrating the enhanced impact realized by of FAIR (Findable, Accessible, Interoperable, & Reusable) MagLab data.

29 March 2021

Sunlight Produces Water-Soluble Chemicals from Asphalt

Road asphalt is made from aggregate (rocks) mixed with a "binder” from the residue remaining after extraction of gasoline and oils from petroleum crude oil. Until recently, this binder was thought to be chemically unreactive. Maglab scientists subjected a thin film of asphalt binder to simulated sunlight in the laboratory and used ultrahigh resolution mass spectrometry to reveal thousands of new, water-soluble chemicals that could be released into the environment by rainfall.

16 October 2020

Prefractionation of Intact Proteins for Mass Spectrometry

Analysis of intact proteins using mass spectrometry is a difficult task that can be simplified by prefractionation, a process in which protein mixtures are separated into simpler fractions based on size. Here, researchers developed a new method, PEPPI-MS, which uses low-cost materials and common lab equipment to make an important protein separation strategy widely available.

22 May 2020

Ultrahigh Performance Molecular Imaging using the 21T ICR Magnet

Combining spatial imaging technology with ultrahigh performance FT-ICR mass spectrometry provides users with the unique ability to create tissue images of identified biomolecules. This technology will be applied to understand human health and disease.

25 February 2020

Corrosion Analysis on Acidic Crude Oils using FT-ICR

A new method to characterize crude oil corrosion shows that corrosion in acidic crude oils depends on the specific structures of the acid molecules, information that can help improve oil valuation and refining.

19 August 2019

Identification of abnormal hemoglobin from human blood

Precise determination of hemoglobin sequence and subunit quantitation from human blood for diagnosis of hemoglobin-based diseases.

1 March 2019

Researchers demonstrate method for analyzing molecules from bacteria cell walls

Scientists will be able to apply the technique to characterize similar molecules, helping develop vaccines and drugs to treat bacterial infection.

19 November 2018

Functionalizing molecular nanocarbon with fluorine atoms

Researchers have discovered a new method to create encapsulated carbon nanomaterials that contain fluorine. Known as fullerenes, these nanocages are promising candidates for clean energy applications.

21 August 2018

Ancient porphyrins indicate far earlier date for photosynthesis

Molecular fossils of chlorophyll (called porphyrins) more than 1.1 billion years old find suggest that photosynthesis began 600 million years earlier than previously established.

27 February 2018

Targeted annotation of peptides by selective infrared multiphoton dissociation mass spectrometry

Protein oxidative damage is a common occurrence in a number of diseases, including cancer, neurodegenerative, and cardiovascular disease. Yet, little is known about its contribution to these illnesses. We developed a new technique, utilizing an infrared laser in combination with a mass spectrometer, to selectively identify sites of oxidation in complex protein mixtures. This sensitive and rapid platform may outperform current techniques and thus shed light on the involvement of oxidative damage in each of these diseases.

9 August 2017

More accurate diagnosis for multiple myeloma

New technique could lead to precise, personalized cancer diagnosis and monitoring.

28 February 2017

Decoding the human proteome with powerful mass spectrometer

The MagLab’s 21-tesla FT-ICR magnet can identify human proteins far more efficiently than commercial instruments, a boon for medical research.

19 December 2016

MagLab develops, shares chemical analysis software

The high-tech tools empower scientists studying petroleum and other molecules to make decisions based on advanced data analysis.

20 October 2016

A new twist on DNA

Research sheds important light on the fundamental process of cell division.

21 March 2016

Removing "water-loving" molecules from petroleum

Scientists have developed a way to isolate emulsion-causing petroleum compounds. The technique may help lower energy costs for both oil companies and consumers.

14 October 2015

Protein modifications in human breast cancer

We have discovered biomarkers that make it possible to distinguish breast cancer cells from non-cancerous cells, based on identifying chemical modifications of histones, the molecules about which DNA strands are wound to keep them in the cell nucleus. The method uses a high-field magnet to spread out the signals from different parts of the histone, to locate the site(s) of chemical modifications.

17 June 2015

FT-ICR Mass Spectrometry Enables Peptide de novo Sequencing

We describe a method for de novo protein sequencing with high accuracy and multiple levels of confidence. Samples are digested separately by two proteases, Lys-C and Lys-N. The resulting complementary pairs of ions combine to improve confidence in the identification.

16 February 2015

Endohedral Metallofullerenes are Formed by Directed by Charge Transfer

An understanding of the formation mechanism of endohedral metallofullerenes may pave the way towards targeted synthesis of these nanomaterials, which are attractive for use in biomedicine and renewable energy. Their bottom-up synthesis is investigated and charge transfer from the encapsulated metal to carbon cage is determined to play a key role in formation.

20 October 2014

Targeted Petroleomics: Macondo Well Oil Oxidation Products on Pensacola Beach

The explosion of the Deepwater Horizon oil rig in April 2012 resulted in the release of ~5 million barrels of crude oil into the Gulf of Mexico ecosystem, a fraction of which washed ashore onto Gulf beaches. We compare the detailed molecular analysis of hydrocarbons in oiled sands from Pensacola Beach to the Macondo wellhead oil (MWO) by Fourier transform ion cyclotron resonance mass spectrometry to identify major environmental transformation products of polar, high molecular weight petrogenic material from Pensacola Beach.