Scanning Microscopy


Laser microprobe mass spectrometry (LMMS) provides spot analysis with a lateral resolution of 1-5 μm. Focused laser ionisation, combined with mass spectrometry, yields information on elements, molecular identification of inorganic substances, and structural characterisation of organic molecules of typically less than 2-3 kDa. Quantification in complex heterogeneous systems, such as biological materials, is not possible at the present state of the art. The strength of the method lies in the qualitative information on the molecular composition of the analyte, not just element detection, with a lateral resolution at the light microscopy level. The applications of this technique in the field of biomedicine and biology are illustrated by examples that demonstrate the use of this qualitative information in practical test cases.

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