April 2022 Meeting

Speaker: Glen P. Jackson, West Virginia University

Topic: Hair Reveals what People Conceal: Biometric Traits from the Chemical Analysis of Human Hair

Date: Monday, April 18, 2022

Time: 6:15 pm Dinner, 7:15 pm Presentation

Location: Shimadzu Scientific Instrument, Inc. Training Center 7100 Riverwood Drive, Columbia, MD 21046 (Directions)
This will be an in-person meeting. Attendees are required to show a vaccine card (either at the door or in advance using the web form) . If you have submitted your vaccine card before, your status is already recorded.

Dinner: Please RSVP to Dapeng Chen (cdpumd@gmail.com) by Friday, April 15th if you will be attending the dinner.

Abstract: This presentation reveals the profound ways in which isotope ratio mass spectrometry (IRMS) can provide information about the geographic origin and history of almost everything around us, including our fellow humans. The presentation explains, from an atomic/isotopic perspective, the ways in which we are literally what we eat. The talk also explains how researchers use IRMS measurements of hair to determine the geographic origin and travel histories of animals and humans.
Building upon these established capabilities, our research develops the ability to objectively classify the hair of different human donors into soft biometric grouping factors such as biological sex and alcohol consumption or to predict continuous variables like age. Classification is accomplished either through the quantitation of amino acids in the shafts of human hair, which is comprised mainly of structural proteins named keratins, or through the precise measurement of naturally occurring stable isotopes of 13C/12C of each amino acid in the hair shafts. Our work also demonstrates that amino-acid-specific analysis of human hair can predict type II diabetes in the donors. In other, unrelated applications, we use the same methodology to link individual blowflies to their carrion (flesh) diet and to link Eastern oysters to their harvesting areas.

March 2022 Virtual Meeting

Speaker: Christine A. M. France, Smithsonian Institution

Topic: Soldiers, Slaves, and Cannibalism: Stable Isotope Indications of Historic Life in North America

Date: Monday, March 21, 2022

Time: 6:45 Virtual Social, 7:15 pm Presentation

Location: See Zoom invite in email on March 11 and 17 (sign up)

Abstract: Archaeological studies often include human remains, consisting of only bones and teeth, whose identity has been lost to time. However, with the right biochemical proxies, bones and teeth can yield information about diet, provenance, and demographics of these unknown individuals. The Smithsonian Museum Conservation Institute Stable Isotope Mass Spectrometry Laboratory applies stable isotopes to North American archaeological remains in an effort to better understand the life history and lifestyles of 17th , 18th and 19th century individuals. Examination of carbon, nitrogen, and oxygen stable isotopes from three case studies highlight insights into dietary grain components, geographical provenance and affiliations, meat consumption, and marine dietary inputs. Soldiers from the American Civil War and post-Civil War periods (ca. 1860-1885) show oxygen isotope values indicative of cross-geographical allegiances. Comparative African populations from Ghana show carbon and oxygen isotope values unique to their region, providing means to distinguish enslaved African Americans that were recent arrivals in the Trans-Atlantic Slave trade (late 1700’s). Nitrogen and oxygen isotope values provide insight into the social class and provenance of a young girl cannibalized during the harsh years leading up to Jamestown Colony’s near failure in 1610. All of these examples emphasize the power of this technique to offer some identity to otherwise anonymous individuals, and to provide new insights into our history.

February 2022 Virtual Meeting

Speaker: David Goodlett, University of Victoria

Topic: Lipid A as a Therapeutic and Diagnostic

Date: Monday, February 21, 2022

Time: 6:45 Virtual Social, 7:15 pm Presentation

Location: See Zoom invite in email on February 10 and 17 (sign up)

Abstract: Lipid A is the membrane anchor for Gram-negative bacteria that holds the much larger lipopolysaccharide (LPS) molecule in place in the outer membrane. Importantly in mammals, Toll receptor 4 (TLR4) recognizes lipid A the result of which is activation of a cytokine cascade that can aid the host in clearing the infection or if unchecked lead to a deadly cytokine storm. There are a range of activities from agnostic to antagonistic that are directly related to structure (e.g. Li). To exploit this we are working to better define the lipid A structure activity relationship for use as a vaccine adjuvants and antisepsis therapeutics (e.g. Scott). We are also using lipid A and related Gram-positive molecules to identify bacteria direct from source in under an hour (Leung) and have recently developed an antibiotic susceptibility test that works in concert with microbial identification providing results a day faster than existing methods. At the ICCVS in Gdansk we are interested in investigating the classic use of bacterial extracts as an immunotherapy (i.e. Coley’s toxins late 1800s NYC) that have been recently revived (Kim). We are also working to define protein antigens that can be used as imaging agents, therapeutics and diagnostics in point of care devices (Freiberg). I’ll present the above topics from the perspective of how mass spectrometry is helping to solve these problems. I’ll also mention how we are working to get down to single cell analysis for proteomics and lipidomics (Weke). And I will provide some perspective on our capabilities at the Genome BC Proteomic Centre where we carry out fee-for-service experiments in metabolomics and proteomics.

Bruker Virtual timsTOF Seminar

New Developments in PASEF & 4D-Proteomics™ on the timsTOF Pro 2 and timsTOF SCP

Register here for this informative, new technology, Mass Spectrometry seminar, Tuesday, February 8th from 2:00pm – 3:00pm EST

• This presentation will highlight the latest proteomics applications data from the timsTOF technology.
• We will show how the extra dimension of separation provided by the mobility separation on the timsTOF enables greater depth from less sample and short acquisition times.
• We will highlight the performance of the timsTOF SCP for single cell proteomics and ultra-high sensitivity applications.
• Example DDA, DIA and PRM workflows will be presented.

Tuesday, February 8th, 2022
2:00 pm – 3:00 pm EST
Speaker: Matt Willetts, Ph.D.
NIH/NIA Host: Andy Y. Qi, Ph.D.
For additional information, please contact Ryan Marsico, Technical Sales Representative for Bruker Daltonics.

January 2022 Virtual Meeting

Speaker: Ricardo Arevalo, University of Maryland

Topic: Laser desorption mass spectrometry with an Orbitrap for planetary exploration

Date: Monday, January 10, 2022

Time: 6:45 Virtual Social, 7:15 pm Presentation

Location: See Zoom invite in email on January 6

Abstract: Laser desorption mass spectrometry (LDMS) techniques enable spatially-resolved chemical analysis of planetary materials, including major/minor/trace element abundances and organic inventory. In the search for prospective biomarkers, the Mars Organic Molecule Analyzer (MOMA) onboard the ExoMars Rosalind Franklin rover will be the first LDMS instrument to characterize the composition of another planet in situ. Here, we describe a next-generation LDMS instrument that integrates a pulsed laser source capable of active beam scanning and precisely-controlled attenuation, and an Orbitrap mass analyzer that delivers 100× higher mass resolution and mass accuracy compared to legacy sensors. A partnership between the University of Maryland, NASA GSFC, the French CosmOrbitrap Consortium, and Thermo Scientific has enabled the development of an engineering test unit that meets the form, fit, and function of a flight instrument targeting the surfaces of Europa, Enceladus, and the Moon.