MS-LaserLab: Analytics of Biomolecular Interactions

Structure and structural changes dictate function. In our research, we probe and unravel molecular structure to understand biological processes at the molecular level. Within this theme, the MS-LaserLab: Analtics of BioMolecular Interactions team has a special interest in peptide and protein aggregation, the transition from soluble native structures to insoluble organized nanostructures. This process is mainly associated with human neurodegenerative diseases, but my research also relates to biopharmaceuticals, biological function and bio-engineering of smart materials.

We specialize in ion mobility mass spectrometry interfaced with molecular spectroscopy (infrared and UV action spectroscopy) and apply and advance these methods to study large and complex biological systems. We are currently commissioning, a unique, 4-dimensional IR-MS based spectrometer allowing us to probe both structure and kinetics in one single experiment. This will be achieved by combining droplet-based microfluidics electrospray ionization and ion mobility mass spectrometry with IR spectroscopy. Initially, we will use this novel approach to understand the aggregation mechanism of Parkinson’s disease in order to ultimately control and inhibit the aggregation process.

Within the Division of BioAnalytical Chemistry, we join forces with the Biomolecular Analysis/ Analytical Chemistry (Somsen) group to develop and apply novel, multidimensional analytics for the molecular understanding of biological and chemical processes and the elucidation of biopharmaceutical and drug characteristics.