Mass spectrometry tools and workflows for revealing microbial chemistry

Tal Luzzatto-Knaan, Alexey V. Melnik, Pieter C. Dorrestein

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review


Since the time Van Leeuwenhoek was able to observe microbes through a microscope, an innovation that led to the birth of the field of microbiology, we have aimed to understand how microorganisms function, interact and communicate. The exciting progress in the development of analytical technologies and workflows has demonstrated that mass spectrometry is a very powerful technique for the interrogation of microbiology at the molecular level. In this review, we aim to highlight the available and emerging tools in mass spectrometry for microbial analysis by overviewing the methods and workflow advances for taxonomic identification, microbial interaction, dereplication and drug discovery. We emphasize their potential for future development and point out unsolved problems and future directions that would aid in the analysis of the chemistry produced by microbes.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)4949-4966
Number of pages18
JournalThe Analyst
Issue number15
StatePublished - 5 Feb 2015
Externally publishedYes

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2015 The Royal Society of Chemistry.

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Analytical Chemistry
  • Biochemistry
  • Spectroscopy
  • Electrochemistry
  • Environmental Chemistry


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