The U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) yesterday announced plans to award a sole source contract to AB Sciex LLC to acquire nano-flow systems to interface with existing detection instruments at CBP laboratories in New York, Chicago, Houston and Savannah.
There are currently four ‘4000 Qtrap’ mass spectrometers at these locations that are capable of advanced liquid chromatography/mass spectrometry measurements including intact protein analysis (multicharge and top-down proteomics), and bottom-up proteomics analysis (digested compliment of proteins of a sample or system).
The contracting action is to acquire the ‘Nanospray III’ and associated software to enable nano-flow high performance, pressure liquid chromatography analysis with existing mass spectrometer instruments.
CPB estimates their existing system allows flows from approximately 20 μL/min. to 1 mL/min. The nano-flow system will allow flows from approximately 2 nL/min. to 2 μL/min, with an improvement in sensitivity from 100 times to 1000 times.
The intended use of the systems will be to improve homeland security food safety analysis, determination of Country of Origin of agricultural products, and investigation of commercial fraud of food importation. The upgrade is expected to provide a substantial increase in protein measurement and identification ability, and increased sensitivity for food toxin contamination analysis.
The contracting action was announced under Solicitation Number: HSBP20068651. The anticipated award date is June 8, 2012.