Charlie Trafford, Senior GLP Analyst from our Bedford laboratory walks us though his daily work routine.
22 Apr 2020
When I get to work the first thing I do is check the samples that were run overnight - I check if there are any issues, such as unexpected results, so I can begin troubleshooting asap. Once this task is complete, and the machine is ready to be used again, I start preparing new samples for extraction. I might also review any existing data or help the team to write new study plans and reports. Towards the end of the day, I’ll set up new samples that will be run overnight ready for analysing and reporting the next day.
At RPS we use a Thermo Scientific Q Exactive Focus Orbi-trap which delivers high resolution accurate mass (HRAM) acquisitions to identify unknown compounds.
The Orbi-trap provides data independent acquisitions which allows us to go back to previously acquired data and look for metabolites which might be found later in the study. This allows us to monitor samples and if it becomes apparent that a metabolite is forming, we can propose possible structures with greater degrees of confidence.
We can then go back to previously captured data, reprocess it to look for this new metabolite, and then track how it forms over time. This saves time because we only have to reprocess acquired data - if we were using traditional equipment we would need to start a new study, re-inject the same samples now checking for this extra metabolite.
Because the Orbi-trap can do high resolution accurate mass acquisitions, we can tell the difference between isomers due to their ever so slightly different accurate masses. This is not something that a normal mass spectrometer can do which means we can save a significant amount of time for our clients.
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