2014 Volume 30 Issue 2 Pages 197-203
Two-dimensional mass spectrometry (MS) analysis of biological samples by means of what is called MS imaging (MSI) is now being used to analyze analyte distribution because it facilitates determination of the existence (what is it?) and localization (where is it?) of biomolecules. Reconstruction of mass image by target signal is given after two-dimensional MS measurements on a sample section. From only one section, we can understand the existence and localization of many molecules without the need of an antibody or fluorescent reagent. In this review, we introduce the analysis of localization of functional constituents and nutrients in herbal medicine products via MSI. The ginsenosides were mainly distributed in the periderm and the tip region of the root of Panax ginseng. The capsaicin was found to be more dominantly localized in the placenta than the pericarp and seed in Capsicum fruits. We expect MSI will be a useful technique for optical quality assurance.