Just one example of ingenious innovation: High throughput for LC/MS with staggered injections

Cherry-picking in an orchard: unattended LC/MS analysis from an autosampler with >32,000 samples online.
Ari N, Westling L, Isbell J.


Abstract
The 1,536-well microplate format has widely supplanted the 384-well microplate format for high-throughput screening and for IC(50) assays. Previously, liquid chromatography/mass spectrometry (LC/MS) analyses of such samples required manual transfers of the wells of interest from a 1,536-well plate into a 384-well plate. Because this manual transfer introduced a source of potential error, it became clear that a more appropriate solution would be to sample directly from the 1,536-well plates. Currently, commercially available 1,536-well plate auto samplers are not compatible with Waters LC/MS systems. The authors have modified their CTC PAL autosampler to support injection from up to twenty-four 1,536-well plates. This allows them to cherry-pick any sample from up to 36,864 wells on the autosampler. Because of its success at this Institute, sampling from 1,536-well plates has not only become the preferred method for LC/MS analysis from IC(50) plates but also become the standard format used for the handling of and the sampling from large combinatorial libraries.
J Biomol Screen. 2006 Apr;11(3):318-22

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