Mass Spectrometry in Innsbruck
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The protein facility established at Innsbruck Medical University is dedicated to provide investigators with equipment, expertise and custom services for the detection, characterization and quantification of proteins and peptides on a recharge basis. The facility maintains a suite of state of the art instrumentation including a MALDI TOF/TOF 4800 plus Analyzer (Applied Biosystems), a Q Exactive HF (ThermoScientific), a Hybrid FT-Mass Spectrometer LTQ Orbitrap XL ThermoScientific), an LTQ VELOS (ThermoScientific), a Procise 492 Protein Sequencer (Applied Biosystems), Nano-LC Gradient Systems UltiMate 3000 (Dionex), a Probot Microfraction Collector (LC-Packings) for on-line MALDI target preparations. Various Capillary Electrophoresis and HPLC Systems and, in addition, a Solaar M6 Dual Zeeman Spectrometer (ThermoScientific) for trace element analysis are operated in the facility.

Contact: Herbert Lindner (



Metabolomics is an integral part of the broader field of systems biology and has attracted increasing interest for studies in important life science disciplines such as pharmacy, toxicology and medicine.

The metabolome is the set of all endo- and exogenous small molecular mass organic compounds (Mr < 1500) found in a given biological media. Asmetabolites are the ultimate downstream products of genomic, transcriptomic, and/or proteomic perturbations, changes in metabolite concentration and/or flux can reveal biologically relevant changes to the system. The primary task of metabolomics is the qualitative and quantitative analysis of the plurality of metabolites to identify markers or signatures that are characteristic for a defined biological system (“phenotype”).

Mass spectrometry usually hyphenated with chromatographic methods is a key analytical technology in metabolomics research.


Design of metabolomics studies

A metabolomics study frequently involves the comparative analysis of sample sets from a normal state and a perturbed state, where the perturbation can be of any nature, such as genetic variation, administration of a drug, or change in diet or lifestyle.

Metabolic profiling (targeted metabolomics) is the multiparallel relative quantification of defined sets of structurally known and biochemically annotated metabolites.

Metabolic fingerprinting is an unbiased approach aimed to characterize as many components of a biological system as possible.


Related areas of research

As the metabolome includes all small molecules introduced and modified by diet, medication, environmental exposure, and coexisting organisms,therapeutic drug monitoring, pharmacokinetics, and toxicology are regarded as research areas closely related to metabolomics.


Core Facility Metabolomics of the Medical University of Innsbruck

The mission of the Core Facility Metabolomics is to serve as an enabling resource for research and development programs. We aim to provide expertise and state-of-the-art technologies for the qualitative and quantitative analysis of small bioorganic molecules. Common targets are drugs, pharmaceuticals, endogenous compounds, and metabolites thereof included in all kinds of biological samples (e.g. biofluids, cells, tissues). The analytical method of choice is mass spectrometry (MS). Usually MS is hyphenated to chromatographic methods (liquid chromatography or gas chromatography).


A detailed description of projects, methods and services is available on our webpage.


For more detailed information please contact

Assoc.Prof. Dr. Herbert Oberacher

Institute of Legal Medicine and Core Facility Metabolomics

Medical University of Innsbruck

Muellerstrasse 44

6020 Innsbruck

Tel: +43-512-9003-70639