Lab Matters Spring 2021 | Page 12


Harnessing the Power of High Resolution Mass Spectrometry for Identification of Unknown Compounds

by Nicholas Ancona , MPH , specialist , Opioids Biosurveillance
countermeasures and law enforcement .”
As HRMS continues to expand , CDC will continue to :
• Enhance library sharing
• Develop protease-based and fentanyl analog screening ( FAS ) kit-based methods
• Refine just-in-time ( JIT ) protocols
• Engage with the US Drug Enforcement Administration , the US Environmental Protection Agency , the US Food and Drug Administration and the US Department of Agriculture to create an LRN-C framework for testing clinical and environmental samples for unknown compounds .
“ Not Just a Cool Toy ”: HRMS Success Stories
Research Scientist Mark Lunda poses next to the Sciex instrumentation used to perform HRMS analyses on clinical and environmental samples . Photo : MN PHL
Matthew Wogen Minnesota Department of Health Public Health Laboratory
High-resolution mass spectrometry ( HRMS ) is a valuable analytical technique that rapidly identifies environmental contaminants and exogenous compounds with a high level of mass accuracy . Laboratory Response Network for Chemical Threats ( LRN-C ) laboratories are uniquely poised to use HRMS for a variety of applications , including non-targeted analysis for PFAS , drugs of abuse and pesticides .
Building HRMS Capability and Capacity in the LRN-C Network
Through funding opportunities , data collection efforts , and training events and conference sessions for member laboratories , APHL and the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention ( CDC ) are committed to HRMS . Data from a recent APHL HRMS survey show that 56 % ( n = 25 ) of 45 responding jurisdictions have an HRMS instrument . Twenty-five percent
( n = 5 ) of 20 responding jurisdictions who do not currently have an HRMS instrument plan on obtaining one within then next two years . To address this growing need , APHL collaborated with Sustaining Member companies and other vendors to provide analytical training for beginner , intermediate and advanced scientists at the three-day LRN-C Technical Meeting in April . An APHL 2021 Annual Conference session also highlighted HRMS in May .
CDC LRN-C Program Director Amy Watson , PhD , sees HRMS as a promising opportunity for the network .
“ The introduction of HRMS capabilities would mean an entirely new , non-targeted approach to chemical threat analysis ,” she said . “ We hope that non-targeted testing capabilities will enable LRN-C laboratories to detect a broader range of known agents , unknown and emerging chemical threats in humans , both in support of medical
The Minnesota Biomonitoring / Emerging Contaminants group added HRMS technology in 2017 with a SCIEX LC-QTOF , and augmented their capacity in 2019 with a Thermo LC-Orbitrap . During an LRN-C surge exercise , the quantitative capability of the LC-QTOF was demonstrated by conducting a JIT method validation . The LC-QTOF analyzed 120 of the 500 clinical samples , providing accuracy and precision similar to two LC-MS / MS instruments also used during the exercise . Another project utilized the LC-QTOF for non-targeted analysis of surface water samples to assess suitability of water reuse . 1 A qualitative targeted screening method was developed on the Orbitrap with a list of over 800 + drugs — it identified novel opioids , benzodiazepines and suspected adulterants in clinical samples .
10 LAB MATTERS Spring 2021
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