Asthma Drug Salbutamol
The asthma drug Salbutamol is commercially produced as a coating on micron sized sugar beads and packaged in an aerosol container. A sample was prepared for analysis
by spraying it onto a silicon substrate in order to disperse the beads.
A large area containing many beads was imaged using Bi3++ (illustrated left) and the image of one bead enlarged (right).
The distribution of the molecular ion of Salbutamol, mass 240 u, on the bead surface is clearly seen.
The pixel size in the image is 100 nm x 100 nm, and the mass spectrum from the pixel selected shows significant intensity for the Salbutamol molecular ion peak (20 counts detected).
Calculation shows that the amount of Salbutamol in this pixel area was in the range of 2 x 10-20 mol.
Field of view 52,7 x 52,7 µm2
Field of view 9,5 x 9,5 µm2
Salbutanol (M+H+) 2.1 E5 counts
Tablet Cross Section
The example below shows mass resolved secondary ion images from a tablet cross section.
This technique can be used to determine the distribution of the different ingredients, including the drug itself, within the tablet.
Pixel Size: 100 x 100 nm2
Mass spectrum reconstructed from
a single image pixel
(100 x 100 nm2).
Images from a tablet cross section showing
the lateral distribution
of various components.