Emerging capabilities of mass spectrometry for natural products
Covering up to the end of 2013
A brief history of mass spectrometry in natural products research serves to identify themes which have driven progress in this area of application and in mass spectrometry itself. This account covers six decades of ionization methods, starting with traditional electron ionization and progressing through today's ambient ionization methods. Corresponding developments in mass analyzers are indicated, ranging from sector magnetic fields, through hybrid quadrupole mass filters to miniature ion traps. Current capabilities of mass spectrometry in natural products studies include direct in situ analysis, mass spectrometry imaging, and the study of biosynthetic pathways using metabolomic information. The survey concludes with a discussion of new experiments and capabilities including ion soft landing, preparative mass spectrometry, and accelerated ionic reactions in confined volumes.
- This article is part of the themed collection: Mass Spectrometry of Small Molecules and Natural Products