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MALDI TOF-TOF MS
Matrix-assisted Laser Desorption/Ionization Time-of-flight/Time-of-flight Mass Spectrometry (MALDI-TOF-TOF MS) is a very sensitive analytical technique. The analyte is mixed with a matrix substance. Laser energy vaporizes and ionizes the matrix, which in turns ionizes the analyte. This "soft" ionization method preserves delicate biomolecules that would otherwise fragment if harsher ionization techniques were used. The ionized components in sample move down the time-of-flight tubes. In the first TOF acceleration, the ions of interest are selected, isolated and fragmented by collision with a neutral gas. These fragments are reaccelerated in the second TOF tube for detection. MALDI-TOF-TOF delivers high resolution and accurate mass analysis of biomolecules such as protein digests and intact proteins, and gives precise peptide mapping for protein identification and characterization for proteomics analysis. (Credit: Muhammad Atif Khan)