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Anal Sci. 2010;26(7):821-5.

Visualization of spatial distribution of gamma-aminobutyric acid in eggplant (Solanum melongena) by matrix-assisted laser desorption/ionization imaging mass spectrometry.

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  • 1Department of Molecular Anatomy, Hamamatsu University School of Medicine, 1-20-1 Handayama, Higashi, Hamamatsu, Shizuoka 431-3192, Japan.


We applied imaging mass spectrometry (IMS) to determine the spatial distribution of gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA). We found that GABA had a specific localization in seeds. We also visualized various biomolecules as well as GABA with higher spatial resolution than in the previous report. Our work suggests that IMS might be a powerful tool for exploring functional food factors, investigating the specific distribution of nutrients in unused natural resources, and evaluating the quality of functional foods.

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