Collect. Czech. Chem. Commun. 2009, 74, 1101-1116
Published online 2009-07-16 11:26:41

Surface analysis by imaging mass spectrometry

Veronika Vidováa,b, Michael Volnýa, Karel Lemra,b and Vladimír Havlíčeka,b,*

a Laboratory of Molecular Structure Characterization, Institute of Microbiology, Academy of Sciences of the Czech Republic, v.v.i., Vídeňská 1083, 142 20 Prague 4, Czech Republic
b Department of Analytical Chemistry, Faculty of Science, Palacký University, Tř. Svobody 8, 771 46 Olomouc, Czech Republic


A review of four MS-based techniques available for molecular surface imaging is presented. The main focus is on the commercially available mass spectrometry imaging techniques: secondary ion mass spectrometry (SIMS), matrix assisted laser desorption ionization mass spectrometry (MALDI-MS), desorption electrospray ionization mass spectrometry (DESI-MS) and laser ablation inductively-coupled plasma mass spectrometry (LA-ICP-MS). A short historical perspective is presented and traditional desorption ionization techniques are also briefly described. The four techniques are compared mainly with respect to their usage for imaging of biological surfaces. MALDI is evaluated as the most successful in life sciences and the only technique usable for imaging of large biopolymers. SIMS is less common but offers superior spatial lateral resolution and DESI is considered to be an emerging alternative approach in mass spectrometry imaging. LA-ICP ionization is unbeatable in terms of limits of detection but does not provide structural information. All techniques are considered extremely useful, representing a new wave of expansion of mass spectrometry into surface science and bioanalysis. A minireview with 121 references.

Keywords: Secondary ion mass spectrometry (SIMS); Matrix assisted laser desorption ionization (MALDI); Desorption electrospray ionization (DESI); Laser ablation inductively-coupled plasma mass spectrometry (LA-ICP-MS); Surface imaging; Mass spectrometry; Desorption ionization.

References: 121 live references.