Analytical Tools


TSQ Vantage (Thermo Fisher)

For LC-MS analyses, we use an UltiMate3000 Ultra High Performance Liquid Chromatography system connected to a TSQ Vantage triple quadrupole mass spectrometer. A heated electrospray ionization interface (HESI, by Thermo Fisher Scientific) proved to be a suitable ion source for a broad variety of analytes in both negative and positive ionization mode.

Chromeleon™ Chromatography Data System Software and Xcalibur™ Software are used for instrument control and data acquisition. Data evaluation is performed using TraceFinder™ Software and parameter for compound ionization and mass analysis are tuned and optimized using Thermo TSQ Tune Master. (All by Thermo Fisher Scientific.)

Mass spectrometry has gained more and more attention in the last decades as the tool of choice for the identification and quantification of many food constituents and contaminants. Mostly, by targeted tandem MS analysis (SRM mode), but possibly also by untargeted analysis (fullscan mode), a wide range of substances can be detected, e.g. mycotoxins, their metabolites, but also food constituents.

Rather simple, but also very sophisticated sample preparation procedures (including liquid and solid phase extraction) can be necessary prior to LC-MS analysis.

Exemplary applications performed in our research group are for instance the analysis of food and feed extracts (e.g. contamination studies, quality control), the analysis of human and animal body fluids or tissue samples (in vivo studies, exposure studies), and the analysis of culture extracts (fungi or human cell cultures, in vitro experiments).


C. Tiessen, D. Ellmer, H. Mikula, G. Pahlke, B. Warth, H. Gehrke, K. Zimmermann, E. Heiss, J. Fröhlich, D. Marko, Archives of Toxicology 2016, 1-14;

B. Warth, D. Braun, C. N. Ezekiel, P. C. Turner, G. H. Degen, D. Marko, Chem. Res. Toxicol. 2016, 29,087-1097;

B. Warth, G. Del Favero, G. Wiesenberger, H. Puntscher, L. Woelflingseder, P. Fruhmann, B. Sarkanj, R. Krska, R. Schuhmacher, G. Adam, Sci Rep 2016, 6.


Agilent 1200 series HPLC system

The Agilent 1200 series HPLC system equipped with a quaternary pump, an auto sampler and a DAD detector is mainly used for qualitative and quantitative analysis of food constituents and contaminants. Our research group currently works on the analysis of cellular uptake and metabolization mechanisms of polyphenols and mycotoxins [1; 2].

[1] Baechler, S. A., Schroeter, A., Walker, J., Aichinger, G., Marko, D. (2014). Oxidative metabolism enhances the cytotoxic and genotoxic properties of the soy isoflavone daidzein. Mol. Nutr. Food Res., 58(6), pp 1269–1281

[2] Schwarz, C., Kreutzer, M., Marko, D. (2012). Minor contribution of alternariol, alternariol monomethyl ether and tenuazonic acid to the genotoxic properties of extracts from Alternaria alternata infested rice. Toxicology Letters, 214(1), pp 46–52

Prep. HPLC

Preparative LC series Knauer Smartline

The Knauer Smartline binary pump 1000 and static mixing chamber manager 5000 are compatible with Agilent HPLC system. The preparative LC system is mainly used for the purification and fractionation of complex biological mixtures, e.g. mycotoxin-containing extracts obtained from Alternaria spp. infested rice cultures [1].

[1] Schwarz, C., Tiessen, C., Kreutzer, M., Stark, T., Hofmann, T., Marko, D. (2012). Characterization of a genotoxic impact compound in Alternaria alternata infested rice as Altertoxin II. Arch Toxicol, 86(12), pp 1911–1925