The seventh Berliner LC-MS/MS symposium includes a programme of talks about mass spectrometry methods and applications, from international researchers and analytical scientists.
The day before the symposium will be training courses for users on March 13 and the day after features two discussion rounds with the majority of talks in German.
The event includes a plenary session on trends and new developments in mass spectrometry, followed by an afternoon of talks divided into six parallel themes.
These are food, environmental and drinking water analysis, clinical chemistry, pharmaceutical analysis, toxicology and forensics and biochemistry and omics applications.
Ashley Sage, senior manager, market and business development EMEAI at SCIEX, said the bi-annual user group meeting has in the region of 750 delegates from Germany, Austria and Switzerland.
“It is aimed at our users in different applications. In the training course they can learn general techniques and software processing. The plenary covers largely the basics and in the afternoon sessions we dive into the applications,” he said.
“Speakers include government laboratories, commercial organisations and academic institutions.
“The third day is a discussion forum on migration and packaging so extractables and leachables and future developments from LC-MS libraries, such as the types of compounds to put in the database and what applications they relate to. It is a chance to hear customer challenges and help them do their day to day job better and what the bottlenecks are.
“We do have user meetings in other countries but not to the same level. We had 100-150 for one in France, I was at one in Prague last year with about 150 people and we held one in the Netherlands with about 60 people.”
Speakers include Prof Gérard Hopfgartner, University of Geneva, Switzerland; Prof Jens Brockmeyer, Stuttgart University, Germany; Dr Wolfgang Schulz, Zweckverband Landeswasserversorgung, Stuttgart and Prof. Thomas Hofmann, TUM Freising, Freising, Deutschland.
The symposium will also feature an exhibition with stands from life science companies as well as a poster session.
Exhibitors are Axel Semrau GmbH & Co. KG, Chromsystems Instruments, cmc-Instruments, Evoscience Leasing, Gerstel GmbH & Co. KG, Leica Mikrosysteme Vertrieb, Maylab Analytical Instruments, Merck KGaA, Molecular Devices (UK), Peak Scientific, Phenomenex, Recipe and Restek.
A general outlook
Sage, who recently spoke to us in depth about mass spectrometry, authenticity and allergen testing, said LC-MS/MS is mostly used for pesticides and mycotoxins.
“We are seeing allergen testing have more application with the move from DNA-based methods such as PCR to mass spectrometry based. LC-MS can do multiplexing and is more accurate. Also, vitamin analysis in a single run, QA/QC of product, glyphosate and mycotoxins, ingredients, nutritional aspects and untargeted screening,” he said.
“Proteomics is being used to find biological targets as part of personalised medicine [and] the Capillary Electrophoresis (CE) technique is more routine and has become more robust.
“Customers tend to use a variety of instruments. Volatile compounds have to be done by GC-MS, pesticides more by LC-MS via QuEChERS, MALDI-TOF offers bacterial fingerprinting. The triple quad is here to stay but it will probably get smaller, faster and more accessible in price.”
The conference programme and online registration can be found here.