1 Analytical Biosciences, Department of Pharmacy, Faculty of Health and Medical Sciences, Københavns Universitet2 Analytical Biosciences, Department of Pharmacy, Faculty of Health and Medical Sciences, Københavns Universitet
Indirect desorption electrospray ionization mass spectrometry (DESI-MS) imaging is a method for imaging distributions of metabolites in plant materials, in particular leaves and petals. The challenge in direct imaging of such plant materials with DESI-MS is particularly the protective layer of cuticular wax present in leaves and petals. The cuticle protects the plant from drying out, but also makes it difficult for the DESI sprayer to reach the analytes of interest inside the plant material. A solution to this problem is to imprint the plant material onto a surface, thus releasing the analytes of interest from parts of their matrix while preserving the spatial information in the two dimensions. The imprint can then easily be imaged by DESI-MS. The method delivers simple and robust mass spectrometry imaging of plant material with very high success ratios.