ASMS 2024: Pioneering the Future of Mass Spectrometry

by | Jul 9, 2024

Discover the latest breakthroughs and emerging trends from the ASMS annual conference

The 72nd American Society for Mass Spectrometry (ASMS) annual conference took place in Anaheim, California, June 2–6, 2024. This exciting event brought together experts and enthusiasts from around the globe to explore the latest advancements and trends in mass spectrometry. This year’s conference was a hub of innovation, featuring cutting-edge research, new technologies, and insightful discussions.

Show attendees enjoyed rich learning through seminars, short courses, and poster presentations, covering everything from basic methodologies and troubleshooting to the latest groundbreaking advancements. Meanwhile, instrument and consumable manufacturers, software solution providers, and other vendors showcased their latest products and shed light on the future of the industry. We heard from many representatives at the show to learn about recent product news and the evolving scope of the broader mass spectrometry landscape. Read on to discover highlights from those announcements and discussions.


Bruker’s big ASMS news centered around the introduction of the neofleX™ Imaging Profiler. This groundbreaking MALDI-TOF/TOF system for mass spectrometry-based tissue imaging is designed for multiomics mass spectrometry imaging (MSI) applications in biopharma, translational, and clinical research. The high-performance neofleX system is designed to be versatile and user-friendly.

“The unique selling point of the new neofleX is the combination of a benchtop model with  MALDI HiPLEX-IHC technology,” says Stefan Foser, Vice President of Global Pharma at Bruker. “It means we are able to really get into the multimodality perspective and have the ability to not only understand from a pathway perspective but also from a functionality perspective.”

Bruker also launched the timsTOF Ultra 2, a state-of-the-art mass spectrometer designed to significantly enhance sensitivity in single-cell and subcellular proteomics. This instrument enables deep, high-fidelity 4D-Proteomics™ of a range of samples including mammalian cells, cancer cell lines, and tissue biopsies, measuring over 1,000 proteins from just 25 pg of sample. 


Shimadzu’s major announcement at ASMS was the global release of its LCMS-TQ RX Series of triple quadrupole (TQ) high-performance liquid chromatograph mass spectrometers (LC-MS). The series comprises three models, including the LCMS-8060RX, LCMS-8050RX, and LCMS-8045RX. 

Intended for use in a range of industries including pharmaceutical, environmental, and food, the LCMS-TQ RX Series can help users meet increasingly strict regulations through accurate, stable data. Shimadzu highlighted some of the key features of these instruments which include enhanced sensitivity, improved stability, ease of operation, enhanced data reliability, automatic calibration, and energy efficiency.


Sciex leveraged the platform of ASMS 2024 to introduce the SCIEX 7500+ system, the latest addition to its quantitative mass spectrometry portfolio. This new mass spectrometer boasts high sensitivity, resilience, and user serviceability while addressing the increasing demands of complex sample types and rapid analysis.

“One of the key benefits of the 7500+ is the robustness of the system,” says Jose Castro-Perez, Vice President of Product Management at SCIEX. “For any lab that’s running a high number of samples, it will allow a significant improvement in uptime, which equates to better productivity.” Castro-Perez adds that another key benefit of the 7500+ system is the speed, which can reach 800 MRM per second. He explains that this is particularly useful for labs running residual analysis, for example, on pesticide residue analysis, which deal with a very large panel.

Standout features of the SCIEX 7500+ system include Mass Guard Technology, which filters out potentially contaminating ions, and DJet+ Assembly, a fully removable assembly enabling front-end serviceability. Other notable features include an enhanced SCIEX OS (which enables instrument performance tracking and automated decision-making) and compatibility with dry pumps (which can drastically reduce electricity consumption compared to oil-sealed pumps).


Agilent Technologies took the opportunity to unveil two innovative products at this year’s ASMS conference. The first is the Agilent 7010D Triple Quadrupole GC/MS System, which is designed for the food and environmental markets. The 7010D GC/TQ features the new High Efficiency ion Source (HES 2.0) and boasts improved sensitivity and robustness over previous models. As we’re seeing with many companies, Agilent is making a push to provide comprehensive analytical solutions.

"Our mission is more than simplifying lab operations; we provide solutions that enhance performance, streamline workflows, and provide powerful data insights, opening doors to new research frontiers,” says Jennifer Gushue, Associate Vice President of Marketing, Mass Spectrometry Division at Agilent Technologies.

In accordance with this theme, the 7010D GC/MS System includes built-in intelligence tools such as AI powered SWARM autotune and Early Maintenance Feedback (EMF) diagnostic features to streamline workflows and reduce downtime. It also incorporates environmentally conscious manufacturing practices and advanced compliance software.

Agilent’s second key product launch was the Agilent ExD Cell for the 6545XT AdvanceBio LC/Q-TOF system. This system enhances peptide and protein characterization with electron capture dissociation (ECD), addressing the needs of complex biotherapeutics. This field-installable addition is ideal for researchers tackling diverse analytical challenges, particularly in studying large proteins and fragile modifications.

The company also discussed its recently launched 8850 Gas Chromatograph (GC) System. This new compact, single-channel GC merges the legacy features of the 6850 GC with the advanced capabilities and system intelligence of the 8890 GC. “We’re constantly talking with our customers in the market,” advises Jim Gearing, Associate Vice President of Marketing, Gas Phase Separations Division at Agilent Technologies. He explains that there were requests for a replacement for the popular 6850 GC model and the 8850 GC System was the outcome. 

Designed to enhance productivity and efficiency in laboratories across various markets, including energy, chemicals, food, and pharmaceuticals, the 8850 GC also boasts energy consumption reduction of up to 30%.

Thermo Fisher Scientific

Following a major product launch (of the Thermo Scientific™ Orbitrap™ Astral™ mass spectrometer) at the 2023 ASMS annual conference, Thermo Fisher Scientific had another big announcement in store for us this year. The new Thermo Scientific Stellar™ mass spectrometer is an advanced instrument designed to enhance precision medicine by combining rapid throughput with high sensitivity. As Aaron Robitaille, Director of Marketing, Mass Spectrometry, Thermo Fisher Scientific, explains, the Stellar MS sits in the verification stage of the drug development process and is ideal for verifying biomarkers including proteins, metabolites, and lipids (such as those identified in the discovery stage by the Orbitrap Astral MS).

“Stellar MS delivers 10X the quantitative sensitivity while analyzing five times more compounds, and was developed specifically for translational omics workflows with unique capabilities that enable fast, sensitive, and high-throughput biomarker verification—generating excitement from our customers about the productivity they can achieve in their lab.”

Thermo Fisher continues to expand its mass spectrometry suite, catering to a broad range of needs throughout the analytical workflow. “Customers are not just looking for a box or a consumable,” says John Lesica, President, Chromatography and Mass Spectrometry business, Thermo Fisher Scientific. “They’re really looking for a solution across their entire workflow.”

The company announced 10 new products in total, with highlights including the Thermo Scientific Vanquish™ Neo UHPLC system with Tandem Direct Injection workflow, which significantly boosts sample throughput, and three new editions of the Thermo Scientific Orbitrap Ascend Editions Tribrid™ mass spectrometers—MultiOmics, Structural Biology, and BioPharma, as well as several updates to the Thermo Scientific Ardia™ software platform.


This year, Waters unveiled the Xevo™ MRT Mass Spectrometer, which leverages advanced multi-reflecting time-of-flight (TOF) technology to provide superior resolution and speed. The Xevo MRT enables scientists to process samples efficiently, making it ideal for large-scale biomedical research and epidemiological studies. Additionally, it supports comprehensive workflows for metabolomic, lipidomic, and metabolite identification. The system is compatible with Waters™ software, columns, and other instruments, facilitating high-throughput separations as well as seamless data integration.

Waters also announced that it has obtained the ACT™ Ecolabel Certification from My Green Lab for 42 of its liquid chromatography (LC) columns. This certification independently validates the environmental impact of the company’s columns, including manufacturing, use, packaging, and disposal. The ACT Ecolabel helps scientists and purchasers select products that align with their sustainability objectives.

"Today, sustainability is very much a part of our customers' decision-making process,” says Erin Chambers, Vice President, Consumables and Lab Automation, Waters Corporation. “Certifying Waters columns with ACT Ecolabels makes it easier for customers to make an environmentally conscious choice without having to sacrifice analytical performance and results."


ACD/Labs continues to leverage its advanced informatics capabilities to build partnerships within the industry. Richard Lee, Director of Core Technology and Capabilities at ACD/Labs, expanded on the scope of the company’s work.

ACD/Labs specializes in analytical data management, integrating data from various instruments and vendors into a single accessible platform for scientists. Lee explained that this capability is particularly valuable for pharmaceutical companies that need to share and contextualize data across multiple departments and phases of drug development. ACD/Labs’ data connectors are highly regarded for their compatibility with numerous vendors and data formats, which is crucial given the diverse and evolving nature of scientific instruments. The ACD/Labs’ Spectrus platform supports discrete data files but also all major chromatography data systems (CDS) such as Empower, Openlab/Chemstation, Chromeleon, and LabSolutions. It extracts native meta data and all analytical traces/spectra maintaining data fidelity for reanalysis within the Spectrus platform. While around 70% of the company’s customers are in the pharmaceutical industry, ACD/Labs also serves many clients working with specialty chemicals, including agrichemicals. 

Lee noted that the company also supports machine learning and AI applications by ensuring data is clean and in the correct format, making it suitable for computational analysis. He added that the integration of legacy data into machine learning models is a significant focus for many pharma companies aiming to enhance drug discovery. The shift to cloud-native solutions, accelerated by the COVID-19 pandemic, has underscored the importance of platforms like AWS for data accessibility and deployment. Indeed, ACD/Labs collaborates with AI and machine learning companies, often through introductions via AWS.


Phenomenex attended ASMS this year with a focus on showcasing some exciting new innovations in workflows and chromatographic capabilities. President Kaveh Kahen recently joined Phenomenex, and his expertise and experience will undoubtedly contribute to the company's success. In particular, Kahen shed light on the state of the analytical science market and emerging trends.

The softening of market growth in pharma and biopharma, along with the increasing focus on advancing cell and gene therapies, has posed challenges for small molecule application funding, explained Kahen. Startups, especially in biopharma, are facing shutdowns due to a lack of funds and the need to demonstrate unrealized results.

Kahen also highlighted the complex macro environment in China, which has affected the global business growth in the life science industry. Enhancing the security of the supply chain has become crucial for Phenomenex and other laboratory suppliers in the life science field. However, Kahen mentions that markets are stabilizing, and the growth of environmental regulations, particularly regarding per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS), is driving opportunities.

Kahen noted that Phenomenex’s PFAS-related workflow solutions, involving collaboration with SCIEX (another Danaher company), and comprehensive consumables portfolio address the most stringent quality standards and emerging regulations, aiming to tackle PFAS contamination and its impact on human and environmental health. Kahen also emphasizes that Phenomenex will continue to innovate and deliver solutions in areas such as biotherapeutics, cell and gene therapy, and advanced protein analysis, similar to those showcased at ASMS 2024.

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