Agilent Technologies has announced the acquisition of e-MSion, an early-stage company behind innovative electron capture dissociation (ECD) technology known as the ExD cell. The ExD cell is a compact device for mass spectrometers that enables biological researchers to develop biotherapeutic products more quickly. This is done by more comprehensively and precisely breaking the chemical bonds of complex biomolecules, enabling more complete, accurate and detailed structural information to be obtained from them.
The ExD cell is compatible with instruments common in many labs, which will make this powerful characterisation technology—previously limited to only a few high-end mass spectrometers—more accessible to a larger share of labs and biopharma researchers worldwide. The ExD cell enables electron capture dissociation (ECD) and other modes of electron-induced fragmentation in benchtop mass spectrometers. Because of its superior characterisation of larger proteins, protein fragments and their amino-acid modifications, ECD is preferred over other dissociation techniques including collision-induced dissociation (CID), which is the dominant methodology used today.