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ToF-SIMS imaging of lipids and lipid related compounds in Drosophila brain

Conference paper
Authors Nhu TN Phan
John S. Fletcher
Peter Sjövall
Andrew G Ewing
Published in Surface and Interface Analysis: 19th International Conference on Secondary Ion Mass Spectrometry (SIMS)
ISSN 0142-2421
Publication year 2014
Published at Department of Chemistry and Molecular Biology
Language en
Keywords SIMS, imaging mass spectrometry, Drosophila, lipids
Subject categories Physical Chemistry


Drosophila melanogaster (fruit fly) has a relatively simple nervous system but possesses high order brain functions similar to humans. Therefore, it has been used as a common model system in biological studies, particularly drug addiction. Here, the spatial distribution of biomolecules in the brain of the fly was studied using time-of-flight SIMS. Fly brains were analyzed frozen to prevent molecular redistribution prior to analysis. Different molecules were found to distribute differently in the tissue, particularly the eye pigments, diacylglycerides, and phospholipids, and this is expected to be driven by their biological functions in the brain. Correlations in the localization of these molecules were also observed using principal components analysis of image data, and this was used to identify peaks for further analysis. Furthermore, consecutive analyses following 10keV Ar-2500(+) sputtering showed that different biomolecules respond differently to Ar-2500(+) sputtering. Significant changes in signal intensities between consecutive analyses were observed for high mass molecules including lipids.

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