Columbia, MD, United States
Columbia, MD, United States
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Grant
Agency: NSF | Branch: Standard Grant | Program: | Phase: SMALL BUSINESS PHASE I | Award Amount: 146.85K | Year: 2013

This Small Business Innovation Research Program (SBIR) Phase I project is focused on the development of a scalable high performance state of the art computational software platform for simulation of the quasi-static ion optics devices and motion dynamics of many (more than 1 million) charged particles in those devices. While space charge effects due to presence of many ions is currently a major factor limiting the mass accuracy and dynamic range in modern mass spectrometry, there are no widely available software tools to assess this problem. The proposed platform will provide tools for researches in academia and industry to address this and many other problems. The platform will combine a number of advanced features including: implementation of the state of the art parallel processing computational methods such as a parallel Laplaces equation solver, a parallel Poisson equation solver based on a parallel particle-in-cell method and utilization of the parallel 3D fast Fourier transformation method, utilization of the Greens Function method to take ion-electrode interactions into account; support of the heterogeneous high performance computer hardware (starting from a desktop computer equipped with graphics processing unit to heterogeneous computer clusters, cloud computing platforms, and supercomputers).

The broader impact/commercial potential of this project can be achieved by use of the key computational algorithms and tools that will be developed for parallel particle-in-cell -based Poisson equation solver and parallel ion motion simulations in the areas of computational biology, molecular simulations of protein dynamics, molecular medicine, molecular dynamics (MD) simulations for drug discovery, 3D molecular dynamics of protein folding (especially when augmented with the information provided by the mass spectrometry-based methods of protein analysis), MD for clusters analysis of bio-molecular systems, supercomputer-level sampling for protein simulation on desktop computers using graphics processing units, computational nanotechnology (e.g. molecular electronics, charged plasma systems, bio-sensors, etc.). The proposed project is capable of significantly increasing the productivity of the researchers and engineers in the mass spectrometry instrumentation field and, by the virtue of this advancement, to increase the pace of the developments in the other research and application areas, ranging from fundamental physics to biotechnology and medicine, for which mass spectrometry plays key enabling roles.


Grant
Agency: Department of Health and Human Services | Branch: | Program: SBIR | Phase: Phase I | Award Amount: 413.61K | Year: 2012

DESCRIPTION (provided by applicant): Significant increase in the efficiency and speed of electron transfer dissociation (ETD) in tandem mass spectrometry (MS) will have a profound impact on its applications to the entire analytical field of characterization of posttranslational modifications (PTM) in proteins. At present, the applicability of ETD-based MS analysis as a unique analytical tool specifically targeting PTM is limited by its low speed and by inability of ETD to efficiently dissociate proteins orpeptides with low charge density. We plan to build a novel ETD ion source generating an energetic beam of negative ions to significantly improve efficiency and speed of PTM detection of both proteins and peptides. To demonstrate high rate of MS/MS analysisbased on ETD, we plan to utilize capabilities of house-built desktop FTMS instrument equipped with multi-electrode detection system, and record MS/MS mass spectra obtained from fast ETD process with high mass resolution and in a short time. PUBLIC HEALTH RELEVANCE: Utilizing complementary fragmentation methods is a broadly used approach in mass-spectrometry based analysis of complex protein mixtures providing reliable identification of posttranslation modifications in proteins. We plan to developa novel source providing fast fragmentation that will substantially improve and accelerate characterization of posttranslation modifications in proteins analyzed in tandem mass spectrometers. The source can be easily incorporated into a design of a varietyof tandem mass spectrometers. This will allow much better detection of disease-specific biomarkers from biological fluids or tissues.


Grant
Agency: Department of Defense | Branch: Navy | Program: SBIR | Phase: Phase II | Award Amount: 374.15K | Year: 2012

The development of a standoff sensor that can measure 3D components of wind velocity in the downwash of a rotorcraft operating near solid surfaces would enable a better understanding of this complicated flowfield and provide data to validate computational models. The goal of this research is to develop an Aerosol Lidar Velocimeter (ALV) that uses multiple near-parallel lidar beams to track the motion of atmospheric aerosol structures and extract multi-component wind data. In Phase I, the measurement requirements were analyzed and used to develop a numerical model of the performance of a prototype system. In addition, an eye safety analysis was conducted and a conceptual design of the ALV prototype was developed. Studies were conducted with a breadboard in order to demonstrate improvements in spatial and temporal resolution of the system and to obtain more data to further refine the system requirement and algorithm. In Phase II, the ALV design will be finalized and a high power, narrow-pulse laser design that we have developed for another application will be adapted and optimized for this application. The algorithm will be optimized and extended to measurements in all three dimensions using a multi-beam lidar system. At the end of the first year of Phase II, a technology demonstrator that incorporates elements of the ALV prototype will be field tested and evaluated using validation data from ultrasonic anemometers. If the demonstration is successful, the ALV prototype will be integrated and tested.


Grant
Agency: Department of Health and Human Services | Branch: | Program: SBIR | Phase: Phase I | Award Amount: 150.00K | Year: 2013

DESCRIPTION: Significant increase in the efficiency and speed of MS-based tissue imaging (IMS) performed at atmospheric conditions using high-resolution mass spectrometer will have a profound impact on method applications to the entire analytical field ofcharacterization of biomarkers in tissues. At present, the efficiency of the MS-based tissue imaging is limited by low sensitivity. We propose to employ a separate post-ionization step to increase the ion yield from the material ablated by laser from thetissues. To demonstrate high-throughput IMS analysis based on the proposed post-ionization technique, we plan to modify the house-built compact UV laser system capable of generation high-intensity laser pulses at very high repetition rate. PUBLICHEALTH RELEVANCE PUBLIC HEALTH RELEVANCE: Mass spectrometry (MS) analysis of tissues is currently used for profiling of known or search for new biomarkers in cancer-related studies. We plan to develop a novel method that significantly improves sensitivity, dynamics range, and throughput of MS-based tissue imaging. This high-throughput method will operate at atmospheric conditions and can be also applied for a characterization of proteins in 2D gels.


Grant
Agency: Department of Health and Human Services | Branch: National Institutes of Health | Program: SBIR | Phase: Phase I | Award Amount: 144.31K | Year: 2016

DESCRIPTION provided by applicant Significant increase in the efficiency of electrospray ionization ESI and atmospheric pressure chemical ionization APCI sources in tandem mass spectrometry MS MS will have a profound impact on single cell MS based analysis and the entire analytical field of characterization of proteins lipids and metabolites Almost ionization efficiency of nanoflow ESI APCI sources makes it a unique analytical tool specifically applicable to the MS based analysis of zeptomole amounts of chemical and biological substances We plan to build a platform combining subatmospheric nanoflow ESI and APCI sources and very efficient ion collector to drastically improve sensitivity and speed of MS based identification of miniscule amount of biomaterials harvested from single cells PUBLIC HEALTH RELEVANCE A platform combining an ultralow flow liquid chromatography separation platform with nanoflow electrospray ionization source and high mass resolution mass spectrometer will be successfully used in the analysis of complex protein mixtures harvested from single cells The platform will provide reliable protein MS based identification from samples that contain zeptomole amounts of these proteins We plan to develop a novel sub atmospheric interface providing highly efficient collection of ions produced by sub atmospheric pressure ion sAPI sources that can be straightforwardly combined with gas phase separation methods This will drastically improve detection limits and accelerate characterization of proteins and metabolites from single cells using high resolution tandem mass spectrometry The platform can be easily incorporated into a design of a variety of commercial tandem mass spectrometers


Grant
Agency: Department of Health and Human Services | Branch: National Institutes of Health | Program: SBIR | Phase: Phase I | Award Amount: 150.00K | Year: 2016

DESCRIPTION provided by applicant Significant increase in the efficiency of matrix assisted laser desorption ionization MALDI method and utilization of lossless sub atmospheric pressure interface in mass spectrometry MS will have a profound impact on MS based tissue imaging and on the entire analytical field of characterization of proteins lipids and metabolites Proposed increase in ionization efficiency of MALDI sources will make it an indispensable tool for both research laboratories and in clinical settings We plan to build a platform combining atmospheric MALDI source and very efficient ion collector to drastically improve sensitivity and speed of MS based analysis of miniscule amount of biomaterials harvested from tissues PUBLIC HEALTH RELEVANCE A mass spectrometry MS imaging platform utilizing an atmospheric pressure matrix assisted ionization source and ion funnel will be hyphenated with high mass resolution mass spectrometer for the analysis of biological molecules from tissue samples The platform will significantly improve the method sensitivity compared to that achieved using commercial ion sources We plan to develop a novel interface providing highly efficient ionization of analytes harvested from tissue samples and lossless collection of produced ions in the low pressure ion funnel The interface can be straightforwardly combined with gas phase separation methods A use of novel interface will drastically improve detection limits of the MS imaging technology leading to better characterization of protein and metabolite distribution in tissue samples The platform can be easily incorporated into a variety of commercial tandem mass spectrometers


Grant
Agency: National Aeronautics and Space Administration | Branch: | Program: SBIR | Phase: Phase II | Award Amount: 749.99K | Year: 2012

Formaldehyde (HCHO) is a key trace species that is of great interest to atmospheric scientists in NASA and other research institutions. In this SBIR project, we proposed to build an airborne atmospheric formaldehyde (HCHO) profiler implementing a Laser Induced Fluorescence (LIF) technique. This airborne instrument can also be used on the ground for measuring vertical HCHO profiles. To our knowledge, there exists no previous formaldehyde remote sensor that can measure range resolved formaldehyde profile by any technique. The instrument will be able to provide an HCHO profile from an aircraft flying at 20 km altitude to the ground at a 1 km range resolution, and achieve sensitivities better than 70 part-per-trillion-by-volume (pptv) concentration levels at a range of 1 km at nighttime with one second averaging time. In addition, we will explore the feasibility of daytime operation achieving sensitivity of less than 1 part-per-billion-by-volume (ppbv) at a range of 3 km. In Phase I we have built a breadboard formaldehyde profiler instrument and demonstrated the capability of performing highly sensitive nighttime formaldehyde measurements. The outcome of the Phase I work established the feasibility for high sensitivity detection of range resolved HCHO, and provides the design of the prototype sensor.


Grant
Agency: Department of Health and Human Services | Branch: National Institutes of Health | Program: SBIR | Phase: Phase I | Award Amount: 150.00K | Year: 2016

A significant increase in the mass resolving power of Fourier Transform Ion Cyclotron Resonance FTICR mass spectrometers broadly utilized for ion tissue imaging and proteomics studies will have a profound impact on the entire analytical field of characterization of proteins lipids and metabolites A fold increase in the resolving power will create a unique analytical tool specifically applicable to the MS based analysis of trace amounts of chemical and biological substances We plan to build a platform combining the multi electrode ICR cell and novel signal amplification system with the goal to attain the most efficient usage of the FTICR systems with less expensive magnets thus making these instruments the top research tools in biological mass spectrometry Taking into account an availability of moderate field FTICR systems in the laboratories this will enable a wider use of these systems in the variety of the MS based analytical fields Analytical platform utilizing a modified mass analyzer will be used in high resolution mass spectrometer for the analysis of biological molecules The platform has the potential to significantly improve mass resolution and mass accuracy in biological analyses compared to that achieved using commercial systems We plan to develop a novel ion detector operating at moderate magnetic fields that is able to provide a high level of identification accuracy in mass analysis comparable to that attained only in ultra high magnetic fields A use of the novel detector has the potential to drastically improve mass spectrometry based tissue imaging and can lead to better characterization of proteins and metabolites


Grant
Agency: National Science Foundation | Branch: | Program: SBIR | Phase: Phase I | Award Amount: 146.85K | Year: 2013

This Small Business Innovation Research Program (SBIR) Phase I project is focused on the development of a scalable high performance state of the art computational software platform for simulation of the quasi-static ion optics devices and motion dynamics of many (more than 1 million) charged particles in those devices. While space charge effects due to presence of many ions is currently a major factor limiting the mass accuracy and dynamic range in modern mass spectrometry, there are no widely available software tools to assess this problem. The proposed platform will provide tools for researches in academia and industry to address this and many other problems. The platform will combine a number of advanced features including: implementation of the state of the art parallel processing computational methods such as a parallel Laplace's equation solver, a parallel Poisson equation solver based on a parallel particle-in-cell method and utilization of the parallel 3D fast Fourier transformation method, utilization of the Green's Function method to take ion-electrode interactions into account; support of the heterogeneous high performance computer hardware (starting from a desktop computer equipped with graphics processing unit to heterogeneous computer clusters, cloud computing platforms, and supercomputers). The broader impact/commercial potential of this project can be achieved by use of the key computational algorithms and tools that will be developed for parallel particle-in-cell -based Poisson equation solver and parallel ion motion simulations in the areas of computational biology, molecular simulations of protein dynamics, molecular medicine, molecular dynamics (MD) simulations for drug discovery, 3D molecular dynamics of protein folding (especially when augmented with the information provided by the mass spectrometry-based methods of protein analysis), MD for clusters analysis of bio-molecular systems, supercomputer-level sampling for protein simulation on desktop computers using graphics processing units, computational nanotechnology (e.g. molecular electronics, charged plasma systems, bio-sensors, etc.). The proposed project is capable of significantly increasing the productivity of the researchers and engineers in the mass spectrometry instrumentation field and, by the virtue of this advancement, to increase the pace of the developments in the other research and application areas, ranging from fundamental physics to biotechnology and medicine, for which mass spectrometry plays key enabling roles.


Grant
Agency: Department of Health and Human Services | Branch: | Program: SBIR | Phase: Phase I | Award Amount: 164.92K | Year: 2014

DESCRIPTION (provided by applicant): Significant increase in the efficiency and speed of atmospheric pressure chemical ionization (APCI) in tandem mass spectrometry (MS/MS) will have a profound impact on its applications to the entire analytical field of characterization of drugs, metabolites, lipids, steroids, etc. A broad applicability of APCI-based MS analysis makes it a unique analytical tool specifically targeting trace amounts of many chemical and biological substances. We plan to build a novel APCI ion source based on atmospheric dielectric barrier discharge (DBD) to significantly improve efficiency and specificity of ACPI-MS based detection method. PUBLIC HEALTH RELEVANCE PUBLIC HEALTH RELEVANCE: Atmospheric pressure ionization is a broadly used technique in the analysis of complex chemical and biological samples providing reliable identification of drugs, disease-specific metabolites, steroids, antibiotics, etc. utilizing mass-spectrometers. We plan to develop a novel APCI source that

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