Spatially resolved chemical analysis of cicada wings using laser-ablation electrospray ionization (LAESI) imaging mass spectrometry (IMS)

Jessica K. Román, Callee M. Walsh, Junho Oh, Catherine E. Dana, Sungmin Hong, Kyoo D. Jo, Marianne Alleyne, Nenad Miljkovic, Donald M. Cropek

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Laser-ablation electrospray ionization (LAESI) imaging mass spectrometry (IMS) is an emerging bioanalytical tool for direct imaging and analysis of biological tissues. Performing ionization in an ambient environment, this technique requires little sample preparation and no additional matrix, and can be performed on natural, uneven surfaces. When combined with optical microscopy, the investigation of biological samples by LAESI allows for spatially resolved compositional analysis. We demonstrate here the applicability of LAESI-IMS for the chemical analysis of thin, desiccated biological samples, specifically Neotibicen pruinosus cicada wings. Positive-ion LAESI-IMS accurate ion-map data was acquired from several wing cells and superimposed onto optical images allowing for compositional comparisons across areas of the wing. Various putative chemical identifications were made indicating the presence of hydrocarbons, lipids/esters, amines/amides, and sulfonated/phosphorylated compounds. With the spatial resolution capability, surprising chemical distribution patterns were observed across the cicada wing, which may assist in correlating trends in surface properties with chemical distribution. Observed ions were either (1) equally dispersed across the wing, (2) more concentrated closer to the body of the insect (proximal end), or (3) more concentrated toward the tip of the wing (distal end). These findings demonstrate LAESI-IMS as a tool for the acquisition of spatially resolved chemical information from fragile, dried insect wings. This LAESI-IMS technique has important implications for the study of functional biomaterials, where understanding the correlation between chemical composition, physical structure, and biological function is critical. [Figure not available: see fulltext.].

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1911-1921
Number of pages11
JournalAnalytical and bioanalytical chemistry
Volume410
Issue number7
DOIs
StatePublished - Mar 1 2018

Keywords

  • Cicada wings
  • Imaging
  • Insect hydrocarbons
  • Laser-ablation electrospray ionization
  • Mass spectrometry
  • Spatial resolution

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Analytical Chemistry
  • Biochemistry

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