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Label free biochemical 2D and 3D imaging using secondary ion mass spectrometry.

Review article
Authors John S. Fletcher
John C Vickerman
Nicholas Winograd
Published in Current opinion in chemical biology
Volume 15
Issue 5
Pages 733-40
ISSN 1879-0402
Publication year 2011
Published at
Pages 733-40
Language en
Keywords Amino Acids, analysis, Animals, Cell Membrane, chemistry, HeLa Cells, Humans, Imaging, Three-Dimensional, instrumentation, methods, Ions, chemistry, Molecular Imaging, instrumentation, methods, Phospholipids, analysis, Principal Component Analysis, Software, Spectrometry, Mass, Secondary Ion, instrumentation, methods, Xenopus laevis
Subject categories Analytical Chemistry


Time-of-flight secondary ion mass spectrometry (ToF-SIMS) provides a method for the detection of native and exogenous compounds in biological samples on a cellular scale. Through the development of novel ion beams the amount of molecular signal available from the sample surface has been increased. Through the introduction of polyatomic ion beams, particularly C(60), ToF-SIMS can now be used to monitor molecular signals as a function of depth as the sample is eroded thus proving the ability to generate 3D molecular images. Here we describe how this new capability has led to the development of novel instrumentation for 3D molecular imaging while also highlighting the importance of sample preparation and discuss the challenges that still need to be overcome to maximise the impact of the technique.

Page Manager: Webmaster|Last update: 9/11/2012

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