• Mass spectrometry 'is essential' to analyse biologically active substances
    Mass spectrometry plays an essential role in analysing biologically active substances, researchers say


Mass spectrometry 'is essential' to analyse biologically active substances

Oct 19 2010

Analysing biologically active substances in proteomic research relies on mass spectrometry as an "essential technique", according to scientists at the Universita degli Studi di Pavia in Italy.

Writing in BMC Bioinformatics, which carries the latest research findings in statistical and computational analysis of biological data, they explain that the proteins of biologically active substances can be identified and compared using mass spectrometry.

Now the pair - Nicola Barbarini and Paolo Magni of the university's Dipartimento di Informatica e Sistemistica - have developed an original algorithm they say can extract peak lists from either high or low-resolution mass spectra.

Their solution tackles the problem of overlapping distributions as one of a number of innovative features they say are incorporated into the algorithm.

With the peak list produced through mass spectrometry, they explain that the mass, intensity and charge of each biomolecule detected in the biologically active substances investigated can be extracted, with peak detection and extraction two of the main applications of the process.

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