This Laboratory performs a research and service function for the entire UCLA campus and beyond. Mass spectrometry has become an indispensable tool in biological research because in a qualitative mode it allows unequivocal identification of a wide range of compounds including small (lipids, amino acids, bases, carbohydrates etc) and large (proteins and nucleic acids) molecules from impure samples. In a quantitative mode the measurements can be extra-ordinarily precise. Mass spectrometry is having an increasingly important impact in all areas of biochemistry, but most notably in the detailed characterization of the proteome, and now the metabolome, that have emerged as the successors to the Human Genome Project. While our research has previously been broadly defined within the context of cellular communication, with time has come increasing involvement in other research projects. This was not unexpected and in fact is welcomed because significant expense and effort is required not only to purchase, but to also sustain and operate these complex instruments, and it is not appropriate for all laboratories to have their own instruments. The services that are provided include analyses by combined gas chromatography/mass spectrometry, combined liquid chromatography/mass spectrometry, and the expertise and experience that is necessary to use these techniques to answer questions related to biochemistry, and interpret the data.
More information at http://massspec.chem.ucla.edu