Lipidomics and Metabolomics

About the Lipidomics and Metabolomics Shared Resource

The Lipidomics and Metabolomics Shared Resource (LMSR) is a focal point for the development of a sustainable critical mass of expertise in lipid signaling and state-of-the-art analytical techniques.

Acknowledge the Lipidomics and Metabolomics Shared Resource

All publications that include results, services or products generated by VCU Massey Cancer Center Shared Resources must include the following acknowledgement in the manuscript:

"Services and products in support of the research project were generated by the Lipidomics and Metabolomics Shared Resource, supported, in part, with funding from NIH-NCI Cancer Center Support Grant  P30 CA016059."

PubMed Central (PMC) ID numbers are required for those publications that use CCSG-supported shared resources. All of Massey Cancer Center's Shared Resources are supported by the CCSG. Information to assist you with this process can be found here.

Office of the Vice President for Research and Innovation

This Shared Resource is jointly supported by VCU Massey Cancer Center and the Office of the Vice President for Research and Innovation.

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The Lipidomics and Metabolomics Shared Resource (LMSR) provides highly sensitive and specific analyses of lipids and small-metabolites for investigators at VCU and Massey Cancer Center. The LMSR facilities enable the qualitative and quantitative investigation of the lipidome in both in vitro and in vivo studies involving cell lines, animal models, and/or human samples. This is accomplished using an advanced lipidomic instrumentation suite that is nationally competitive. Specifically, the LMSR maintains 3 advanced quadrupole linear iontrap (QTrap) mass spectrometers, each equipped with an ultra-high performance liquid chromatography (UPLC) system. The core also utilizes a Thermoscientific Q Exactive HF OrbiTrap coupled to a UPLC for untargeted lipidomics and metabolomics with 240,000 resolution. This equipment enables highly sensitive and specific identification and/or quantification of changes to lipids in a high-throughput fashion and over a large dynamic range. Lipid classes analyzed include glycerophospholipids, sphingolipids, sterols, and others; custom analyses are available upon consultation. Untargeted analyses provide data from a database of over 8000 lipids and more than 20000 water-soluble metabolites. The resource is directed by L. Ashley Cowart, PhD, who is supported by the operational director, Jeremy Allegood, PhD, and an additional FTE. Drs. Allegood and Cowart provide consultative services for experimental design and data interpretation and assist with novel method development. The LMSR is a jointly managed (MCC and VCU) resource located in Sanger Hall and within close walking distance of MCC. Standard hours for the facility are 9:00 AM until 5:00 PM, Monday through Friday. The usage of services and equipment is tracked and charged back. The LMSR adds significant value to VCU and MCC research by providing services that otherwise would not be practically obtainable or would be cost prohibitive through alternative vendors or even other non-profit institutions. Overall, the instrumentation and expertise available in the LMSR have facilitated the development of a growing user base of VCU faculty and MCC members, and investigators from other institutions whose research routinely garners peer-reviewed national funding and is published in high-impact scientific journals.

Major instrumentation in the core includes:

Sciex 5500 QTrap: Quadrupole Linear Ion Trap used for most of LMSR’s quantitative lipid methods. Allows for 100 fmol or lower LoQ for sphingolipids, eicosanoids, glycerophospholipids, steroids, and lysophospholipids. Allows of analysis of samples that range from lipid bound to protein pulldowns to cells/tissues/fluids.

Sciex 6500 QTrap: Quadrupole Linear Ion Trap used for LMSR’s quantitative lipid methods that require more sensitivity in negative mode or of higher m/z values. Beneficial for cardiolipins, sulfatides, ganglioside species, and some glycerophospholipids.

Thermoscientific Q Exactive HF OrbiTrap: This is the LMSR’s newest instrument for lipidomics and metabolomics. The OrbiTrap allows identification and relative quantitation of over 8000 lipid species and more than 20000 water-soluble metabolites. Utilizing the OrbiTrap’s 240000 resolution allows significantly increased confidence in qualitative data.