Charting the Future of Mass Spectrometry at the 72nd ASMS Annual Conference

by | Jun 3, 2024

Hear from ASMS Vice President of Programs as we find out what to expect from this year's conference.

It's that time of year again when analytical scientists from across the globe gather at the ASMS Annual Conference. This year's event is the 72nd of its kind and takes place at the Anaheim Convention Center in Anaheim, California. Bringing together industry specialists, researchers, educators, instrument manufacturers, and other mass spectrometry enthusiasts, this conference promises to provide rich learning opportunities and showcase the latest in mass spectrometry and allied technologies.

The American Society for Mass Spectrometry (ASMS) was formed in 1969 and takes on the role of promoting and disseminating knowledge about mass spectrometry and related technologies and topics. The society boasts a membership of more than 7,000, hailing from academia, industry, and government institutions. The annual conference is the world's largest mass spectrometry conference and typically draws around 6,500 attendees. It entices both new and experienced mass spectrometry enthusiasts with short courses, lectures, poster sessions, competitions, evening workshops, vendor exhibits, job opportunities, and more. 

Key themes at the 2024 ASMS Annual Conference

Joseph Loo, Vice President of Programs, predicts that many of the key themes at this year's conference will represent a continuation of those we saw in 2023. These include increasing analysis throughput and sample capacity, particularly through on-line separation strategies, and the showcase of new mass spectrometers with increased dynamic range, resolution, and sensitivity.

Loo notes that while he doesn't expect the debut of any major trends in 2024, he anticipates that new instrumentation announcements will create lots of buzz at the conference. "Last year, Thermo Fisher Scientific announced their new sensitive, high-throughput Astral mass spectrometer. I'm expecting similar bombshell announcements at this year's conference from other vendors. All of the omics application areas continue to grow, including single-cell MS. Environmental sciences continue to represent prominent applications for mass spectrometry, especially with the current work on PFAS detection."

Expected future trends in mass spectrometry

In 2023, Loo underscored the intersection of mass spectrometry and computation sciences (including AI and machine learning) as an area in which he expected to see significant advancements. He highlighted the vast amounts of data produced by mass spectrometers and the expansion of the technique into an increasing number of fields. Computational tools are required to process large datasets and convert them into knowledge that can be applied in the respective areas. 

Speaking to Loo again this year, he predicts that these trends will continue in 2024 and beyond. "AI and machine learning are growing in all areas of mass spectrometry sciences, and you're starting to see this in application areas such as biopharma," says Loo. "The raw data generated by mass spectrometry is used to train new AI and machine learning algorithms to enhance decision-making processes. ASMS 2024 will have new oral sessions on immunopeptidomics and chemoproteomics, currently very active fields utilizing mass spectrometry." He adds that nucleic acids represent a rapidly growing area for mass spectrometry because of the current trend found in drug development applications.

Discover more about these topics and many more at the 72nd ASMS Conference in Anaheim, California, June 2–6. +

Cover of PFAS analysis magazineThis article is featured in our June 2024 publication, Innovation and Sustainability in Modern Analysis. Find out about the latest innovations and sustainable advances in mass spectrometry, chromatography, and related techniques.

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