Mass Spectrometry: theory and emerging research applications


Mass spectrometry is an essential analytical technique in biochemistry research, allowing numerous research questions to be investigated including identification of chemicals (small molecules or macromolecules) associated with particular phenomenon, comparison of metabolomic or proteomic signatures, identification and location of protein modifications, highly sensitive quantification of chemicals for assay purposes, and much more.

This module will consist of an initial lecture covering the basic principles and history of mass spectrometry, and then will focus on specialized topics chosen by student vote. Topics such as proteomics, quantitative analysis, metabolomics, imaging mass spectrometry, single cell mass spectrometry, accelerator mass spectrometry, structure elucidation, can be covered. These topics will be primarily covered by student presentations, and will consist of theory presentations followed by interesting examples of research applications from the literature. During each class two students will be required to prepare and present one theory seminar, and two students will present one literature example of a research application.

There will also be an assignment, to prepare a research proposal that proposes applying a mass spec technique to a research question of the students choice (such as their graduate area of research). The proposal will be two pages long, single spaced, not including figures or references.

Course Next Offered

June-July 2020

Course Time and Location

Tuesdays 10AM – 12PM
All classes are delivered remotely.

Class #1: June 9th
Class #2: June 23rd
Class #3: July 7th
Class #4: July 14th
Class #5: July 21st
Class #6: July 28th

Enrollment Limit

Yes — 10

Method of Student Evaluation

Two presentations (based on literature research) 60%
Class participation 20%
Mass spectrometry experiment proposal related to student’s research 20%


Justin Nodwell

Justin Nodwell

Medical Sciences Building
1 King's College Circle

Glenna Kramer

Kirsten Meyer

Last Updated 22 May 2020