Mass spectrometry, as a clinical research tool, has been around for quite some time. In the last few years, the rapid pace of product innovations has led to advancements in spectrometer technology. As a result, mass imaging technologies have witnessed significant improvements in resolution, accuracy, and sensitivity, which have remarkably expanded the scope of its applications. The resulting high-resolution and low cost technology has been found useful for clinical diagnostics, environmental testing, and food and beverage testing.
What are the recent technological advancements in mass spectrometry?
A wide assortment of clinical applications has helped microbiologists get a better insight into underlying molecular mechanisms of understanding a variety of biological processes. The matrix-assisted laser desorption/ionization-time of flight (MALDI-TOF)—a potential tool for microbial identification and disease diagnosis—is a quick and low cost microbial species identification technique.
The MALDI TOF imaging mass spectrometry (IMS) is evolving as a viable technique for biomarker identification and cancer diagnostics. Combining the advantages of mass proteomics and the detection of a large number of molecules, it can analyze mass spectrum from whole bacterial cells. In doing so, it helps researchers identify tumors, grade them, and identify biomarkers for different subspecies, thus proving as an effective epidemiological tool. The knowledge is found useful in studying various organ systems and helps in finding therapies for a host of diseases such as cardiovascular, neurologic, joint disorders, inflammatory bowel diseases, and renal diseases.
Another prominent technique is inductively, coupled with plasma mass spectrometry (ICP-MS), which is highly useful for detecting metals and non-metals at very low concentrations.
According to estimation by Transparency Market Research (TMR), currently, MALDI-TOF generates the maximum revenue in the global mass spectrometer market, and is followed by ICP-MS. The product segments are expected to grow at tremendous pace along the forecast period.
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Which regions show lucrative avenues for the manufacturers of mass spectrometers?
Geographically, North America contributed the maximum revenue in the mass spectrometer market in 2015 and was followed closely by Europe. The growth in these regional markets is fueled by impressive technological advancements, product enhancements, and innovations, New product launches by companies such as Thermo Fisher Scientific, Shimadzu Corporation, and Water Corporation have added momentum to the regional markets.
Asia Pacific is rapidly emerging as a prominent region for the growth of the global mass spectrometry market. The impressive growth is attributed to the need for more powerful analytical and bioanalytical techniques for the analysis of several compounds such as amino acids, nucleic acids, peptides, carbohydrates, proteins, and lipids.
Latin America is anticipated to emerge as a lucrative region for the market players due to the expanding applications in diverse areas such as mining, biotechnology, and pharmaceuticals.
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