December 15, 2008 WBMSDG Meeting

Speaker: Dr. Justin Hettick; CDC NIOSH in Morgantown

Topic: Discrimination of microorganisms by MALDI-TOF MS

Abstract: Unambiguous identification of microorganisms such as bacteria or fungi is essential for effective surveillance and treatment of disease.  Unfortunately, diagnosis by classical microbiological methods often requires lengthy culture procedures or subjective micro-and macroscopic evaluations.  To stem the spread of disease, rapid procedures for the accurate identification of microorganisms are necessary.  To that end, we have been developing mass spectrometry-based tools for the analysis of bacteria and fungi.

Matrix-assisted laser desorption/ionization (MALDI) time-of-flight mass spectrometry (TOF-MS) can be used to generate highly reproducible, characteristic “fingerprint” mass spectra.  These “fingerprint” mass spectra may be reduced to a subset of significant mass-to-charge values through statistical tools and compared against a reference library.  Using this technique, microorganisms can be easily identified at the species and strain level with error rates approaching zero.

Time: 7:30 pm

: Shimadzu Scientific Instruments, Inc. Training Center, 7100 Riverwood Drive, Columbia, MD 21046

: Shimadzu Scientific Instruments