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Neutral mass spectrometry of virus capsids above 100 megadaltons with nanomechanical resonators

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Science  23 Nov 2018:
Vol. 362, Issue 6417, pp. 918-922
DOI: 10.1126/science.aat6457

Bridging the mass gap

Viruses and many large biomolecule complexes are in a mass range that is challenging to measure with conventional mass spectrometry methods. Nanomechanical resonators can determine masses of impacting molecules, but separation methods often lose too much of the sample to be efficient. Dominguez-Medina et al. used an aerodynamic lens that improved separation and focusing of nebulized molecules with increasing mass. The mass of both filled and empty viral capsids was determined with an array of 20 nanoresonators.

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