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QE-Map Mission

Our goal is to develop novel analytical and imaging technologies that enable biomedical research teams to image changes in metal localization in a quantitative manner from cells to tissues and whole animals. The Quantitative Elemental Mapping for the Life Sciences Resource will integrate multiple technologies to create transformative approaches to answer compelling biological questions about the functions of metals and other essential elements in health and disease.


This National Research Resource for Quantitative Elemental Mapping in the Life Sciences (QE-MAP) was founded at Northwestern University in the Chemistry of Life Processes (CLP) Institute in 2019 with funds provided by the National Institute of General Medical Sciences (NIGMS). The Resource was moved to the Elemental Health Institute (EHI) at Michigan State University in 2021 and resides on the 1st and 3rd floors of the Interdisciplinary Sciences and Technology Building (ISTB) as well as Northwestern University which combined houses some of the most advanced elemental analysis and mapping facilities in the nation. The Resource has dedicated space of over 2000 sq. ft. between NU and MSU and has access to 2 LA-ICP-TOF-MS systems equipped with single cell autosamplers and cryogenic stages for laser ablation, ICP-MS, QQQ-ICP-MS, ICP-OES, HR-ICP-MS, microwave digestion, HPLC, IC, and elemental analysis. 20 scientists work in the Resource labs on technology research and development (TRD) projects as well as driving biology projects (DBPs). Many significant developments in elemental mapping have occurred over the last few years from work performed in the Resource.