, Volume 387, Issue 2, pp 525-527
Date: 12 Aug 2006

Comparing and combining NMR spectroscopy and mass spectrometry in metabolomics

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The rapidly expanding field of metabolomics has been driven in recent years by advances in the analytical methods of high-resolution nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) spectroscopy and mass spectrometry (MS), and their combination with multivariate statistics [1, 2]. Widespread application of metabolomics has been achieved in the areas of system biology, drug discovery, pharmaceutical research, early disease detection, toxicology, food and nutrition science and others [36]. The potential scientific payoff is also driving the development of new methodologies that promise to fuel a further expansion of the field. In addition, because of the complementary analytical features of NMR and MS, opportunities for leveraging both methods are being considered which will create more comprehensive metabolic profiling. While only a few studies to date have combined both analytical techniques with statistical analysis [7], this approach has exciting potential for the field.

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