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High Resolution Mass Spectrometric Imaging of Cells and Tissue: MALDI and Surface Enhanced SIMS Put to Work

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Imaging the proteome is a term that is used in many different contexts. The term implies that the entire cohort of proteins and their modifications are visualized. This unfortunately is not the case. In this mini-review, a concise overview is provided on different imaging technologies that are currently used to investigate the structure, function and dynamics of proteins and their organization. These techniques have been selected for review based on the unique insights they provide in subsets of the proteome. These techniques have been illustrated with practical examples of their merits. Mass spectrometry-based imaging technologies are playing a key role in proteome research and have been reviewed in more detail. They hold the promise of detailed molecular insight in the spatial organization of living system.