SAN FRANCISCO, Sept. 6 - The US Department of Energy's Pacific Northwest National Laboratory is collaborating with Bruker Daltonics on a souped-up mass spectrometer, the lab told GenomeWeb this week.
By adding its own custom-built hardware and software to a Bruker 9.4 tesla Fourier-transform ion cyclotron resonance, PNNL has boosted the range of proteins detected in proteome-wide measurements to more than five orders of magnitude, said Richard Smith, a PNNL principal investigator.
Smith said almost half of the original Bruker instrument was replaced with PNNL-designed ion optics, an interface to the ionization source, and separations based on high-pressure liquid chromatography. Additional software was also created to allow a higher level of automation, said Smith.
Smith would not disclose details of the cooperative research agreement between the organizations, though he said Bruker gave PNNL technical information on instrumentation that was necessary for PNNL to make its modifications. Bruker may be interested in the commercialization of the modified system, said Smith.
The modified Bruker is currently one-of-a-kind, he said, and PNNL continues to tweak it with the goal of reaching 24/7 operation 95 percent of the time.