Instrumental Analytical Chemistry and Metabolomics
The research group "Instrumental Analytical Chemistry and Metabolomics" addresses separation science and mass spectrometry.
In the field of elemental mass spectrometry the group performs elemental ultratrace analysis down to sub-ng L -1 concentrations via ICP-MS in clean room laboratories. Moreover, it combines efficient separation techniques, i.e. HPLC, CE and GC with ICP-MS for elemental speciation analysis. We implement method developments into environmental projects (iron transport in the ocean, surface water analysis, platinum group elements and compounds), soil/plant research (root exudates, metal complexes in the rhizosphere, plant and microbial siderophores) and bio(techno)logical methods aiming at the investigation of metal/protein interaction.
In the field of metabolomics, the group uses tandem mass spectrometers (LC-MS/MS and GC-MS/MS) for targeted quantification (metabolic profiling) of primary metabolites and intermediates in biological systems focusing mainly on research and applications in biotechnology. In the same context, we use accurate mass time-of-flight systems (LC-QTOFMS, GC-QTOFMS) for development of non-targeted analysis together with highly sophisticated chemometric data analysis methods. Currently ion mobility-mass spectrometry is a central research topic. We are addressing 13C metabolic flux analysis by method development for measurement of accurate isotopologue and tandem mass isotopologue ratios of selected metabolites in cell extracts. After calculation of isotopologue fractions, these data are transferred to bioinformatic modeling of metabolic fluxes.
In several projects, quantitative data is generated by advanced quantification strategies based on elemental labeling or isotope dilution mass spectrometry. Great importance is attached to determination of measurement uncertainty and uncertainty budgeting.