Tissue Imaging at Atmospheric Pressure Using Desorption Electrospray Ionization (DESI) Mass Spectrometry


  • This work was supported by Prosolia Inc. (Indianapolis, IN) and the Office of Naval Research, and performed in the Bindley Biosciences Center. The authors gratefully thank Candice Kissinger, James Woods, and Peter Kissinger (Bioanalytical Systems Inc., West Lafayette, IN) for advice and for providing rat brain specimens for these studies. The authors also thank Shannon Cornett (Vanderbilt University) for information on data conversion. In addition, we thank Dominik Lenz (Purdue University, Bindley Bioscience Center) for providing optical images of rat brain sections. Frontispiece artwork by D.R.I. and J.M.W.


original image

Images of the masses: Two-dimensional molecular imaging of intact rat brain tissue under ambient conditions was achieved by using the mass spectrometric technique of desorption electrospray ionization (DESI). The distributions of specific lipids, such as sulfatide 24:1, reveal distinctive subanatomical features of the rat brain (cc=corpus callosum; aca=anterior part of anterior commissure) with spatial resolution of less than 500 μm.