An exiting new paper on demonstrating the advantages of using gas cluster ion beams (GCIBs) in combination with trifluoracetic acid (TFA) vapor exposure for the imaging of lipids in mouse brain sections. There is an optimum exposure to TFA that is beneficial for increasing high mass signal as well as producing signal from previously unobserved species in the mass spectrum. Cholesterol enrichment and crystallization on the sample surface is removed by TFA exposure uncovering a wider range of lipid species in the white matter regions of the tissue, greatly expanding the chemical coverage and the potential application of TOF-SIMS imaging in neurological studies. Ar4000+ (40 keV) in combination with TFA treatment facilitates high resolution, high mass imaging closing the gap between TOF-SIMS and matrix-assisted laser desorption ionization (MALDI).
Read the paper by Tina B. Angerer, Masoumeh Dowlatshahi Pour, Per Malmberg, and John S. Fletcher in Analytical Chemistry.