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Exploiting the Semidestructive Nature of Gas Cluster Ion Beam Time-of-Flight Secondary Ion Mass Spectrometry Imaging for Simultaneous Localization and Confident Lipid Annotations.

ABSTRACT: Lipids have been recognized as key players in cell signaling and disease. Information on their location and distribution within a biological system, under varying conditions, is necessary to understand the contributions of different lipid species to an altered phenotype. Imaging mass spectrometry techniques, such as time-of-flight secondary ion mass spectrometry (ToF-SIMS) and matrix-assisted laser desorption/ionization (MALDI), are capable of revealing global lipid distributions in tissues in an untargeted fashion. However, to confidently identify the species present in a sample, orthogonal analyses like tandem MS (MS/MS) are often required. This can be accomplished by bulk sample analysis with liquid chromatography (LC)-MS/MS, which can provide confident lipid identifications, at the expense of losing location-specific information. Here, using planarian flatworms as a model system, we demonstrate that imaging gas cluster ion beam (GCIB)-ToF-SIMS has the unique capability to simultaneously detect, identify, and image lipid species with subcellular resolution in tissue sections. The parallel detection of both, intact lipids and their respective fragments, allows for unique identification of some species without the need of performing an additional orthogonal MS/MS analysis. This was accomplished by correlating intact lipid and associated fragment SIMS images. The lipid assignments, respective fragment identities, and locations gathered from ToF-SIMS data were confirmed via LC-MS/MS on lipid extracts and ultrahigh mass resolution MALDI-MS imaging. Together, these data show that the semidestructive nature of ToF-SIMS can be utilized advantageously to enable both confident molecular annotations and to determine the locations of species within a biological sample.

PROVIDER: S-EPMC7430256 | BioStudies |

REPOSITORIES: biostudies

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