Adlershofer Kolloquium Analytik

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Adlershofer Kolloquium Analytik

Tuesday, 28. March 2017 // 14.00

Bundesanstalt für Materialforschung und -prüfung

Richard-Willstätter-Straße 11, 12489 Berlin

Recent developments in single particle/cell ICP-MS

Prof. Dr. Jörg Bettmer, Universidad de Oviedo Facultad de Química, Dpto. de Química Física y Analítica


Inductively coupled plasma-mass spectrometry (ICP-MS) has been an established technique for trace and ultratrace elemental analysis since nearly three decades. Its high elemental sensitivity, selectivity and isotopic information has made it to an indispensable tool in total elemental determination, speciation, isotope ratio measurements and nanoparticle analysis. During the last decade, new challenges have been identified in this field: the analysis of individual (nano)particles and single cells.

After its introduction in 2003 by Degueldre et al., single particle ICP-MS has gained great attention for the detection of nanoparticles. Its simple set-up offers the possibility to characterise nanomaterials in terms of particle size (if particle shape is known), size distribution and particle number concentration. This lecture will give a brief overview on actual developments in single particle ICP-MS and critically reflect the potential and limitations of this technique. In this context, a sample introduction system will be presented that permits both, single particle and single cell ICP-MS analysis. The main advantages of the applied system are the low sample consumption and its high transport efficiency (about 50 % for nanoparticles and 25 % for cells). Examples will be given on single particle and single cell ICP-MS analysis.

The second part of this presentation is dedicated to the possibility ICP-MS/MS may offer in the area of single particle and single cell analysis. Since its introduction in 2012, ICP-MS/MS has gained great attention as it provided a new concept of reducing spectral interferences. Based on the recently introduced iCAP TQ ICP-MS (Thermo Fisher Scientific) some fundamentals of the technology will be briefly summarised. Finally, first experiments on single particle and single cell analysis will be highlighted.