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Abstract No.: ThP-135
Session: Instrumentation and Methodologies for Imaging MS
Presentation date: Thu, Aug 31, 2006
Presentation time: 09:50 – 11:20

The Development of a Method for Imaging the Distribution of Agrochemicals in Plants

David M. G. Anderson1, Malcolm R. Clench1, Vikki A. Carolan1, Susan Crosland2, Kate R. Sharples2

1 Sheffield Hallam University, Sheffield, United Kingdom
2 Syngenta, Bracknell, United Kingdom

Correspondence address: David Micheal Germaine Anderson, Sheffield Hallam University, Biomedical Research Center, Howard Street, Sheffield, S1 1WB United Kingdom.

Keywords: Imaging; MALDI; Mass Spectrometry, Time of Flight; Pesticides.

Novel aspect: Detection of xenobiotics in plants using imaging MALDI-TOF MS.


Studying the uptake and translocation of agrochemicals in plants is important in developing new active ingredients for weed and pest management. Agrochemicals can enter the plant via foliar absorption or root uptake. These compounds may then be transported in the xylem or phloem to other areas of the plant.

Imaging Matrix Assisted Laser Desorption Ionisation - Time of flight - Mass Spectrometry (i-MALDI-TOF-MS) has been previously used to detect agrochemicals in soya plants. The distribution of mesotrione and azoxystrobin has been imaged from the surface of leaves by direct application and in the stems of soya plants after uptake of compounds via the root system.

The development of a method for imaging the distribution of mesotrione and azoxystrobin in the plant after foliar uptake is described. MALDI-TOF-MS images have been obtained using an Applied Biosystems/MDS Sciex Q-star pulsar i fitted with an orthogonal MALDI source and an Nd:YaG laser. Solutions of agrochemicals were applied to leaves, incubated at room temperature to allow absorption into the leaf, and translocation of compounds into the stem.

Images of the deprotonated and protonated molecules have been generated, that indicate the distribution of the compound in the plant.