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R&D 100 Award Goes to Waters ionKey/MS System

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Waters Corporation has announced that the Waters® ionKey/MS™ System has received an R&D Magazine R&D 100 Award as one of the 100 most technologically innovative products to be introduced over the past year.

“I’d like to thank the publisher and editors of R&D Magazine and the judges for choosing our ionKey/MS System for this award,” said Ian King, Vice President – Separations Science, Waters Division. “The response of scientists to the product has been extremely gratifying and our development team and our collaborators deserve all the credit for bringing this product to market despite the technological challenges this novel approach presented.”

Intended for use with Waters ACQUITY® UPLC® M-Class System and a range of Waters mass spectrometers, including the Xevo® TQ-S , Xevo G2-XS and the Synapt® G2-Si, the Waters ionKey/MS System physically integrates a UPLC separation into the mass spectrometer producing up to a 40x improvement in sensitivity, enabling scientists to achieve unparalleled separation and detection of compounds.

The ionKey/MS System’s iKey Microfluidic Separation Device, which is about the size of a smart phone, contains the fluidic connections, electronics, ESI interface, column heater, eCord™ Intelligent Chip Technology and the 1.7 micron UPLC grade particles packed inside a 150 micron I.D. channel to perform hundreds upon hundreds of UPLC separations reproducibly and reliably without a degradation in performance.

For quantifying extremely low abundant analytes, researchers often turn to microscale LC techniques employing microfluidics because of their ability to optimize ionization efficiency and improve MS sampling. In their 2014 article in the journal Bioanalysis, Merck scientists beta-testing the ionKey/MS System reported that the method they developed achieved an overall 20-fold increase in sensitivity (0.5 picomoles vs. 11 picomoles) for endogenous levels of GLP-1 in human plasma, a faster run time (nine minutes vs. 35 minutes), increased specificity and resolution over a more traditional LC-MS/MS method.

Since the R&D 100 award competition began, Waters has won nine R&D 100 awards, most recently for its CORTECS® 1.6 micron analytical columns, Oasis® 96-Well (micro) Elution Extraction Plate, XTERRA® Columns, ACQUITY UPLC System and the ACQUITY UPC2® System.