The 30th issue of the "Forum Analytik" took place on February 12 and 13, 2013, in the Austria Trendhotel Schloss Wilhelminenberg in Vienna. This, almost traditional, event is organized by Agilent Technologies Austria together with the Austrian Society of Analytical Chemists. The forum aims to bring together prominent scientists who review their specific fields of work and tutorial talks from Agilent scientists providing insights in the practice of Agilent's chemical and bio-analysis systems. In addition the newest Agilent analysis equipment is shown together with consumables and software solutions. 

 

Divided over both days there were about 220 attendees. It was striking to see quite some retired analytical chemists and old customers, who obvious took the free opportunity to hear the talks, meet with Franz Weigang, GM Agilent Technologies Austria and who came despite the horrible snow during two days. 

Most prominent speakers in this year's issue of the forum were e.g. Prof. G√ľnther Bonn of Innsbruck University, Dr. Fritz Erni, retired senior scientist of Novartis, Dr. Friedrich Lottspeich, who recently retired from the MPI for Biochemistry in Martinsried, Prof. Herbert Lindner, also of Innsbruck University, Prof. Christopher Gerner, successor of Prof. Wolfgang Lindner on the renowned chair for Analytical Chemistry at Vienna University, and Prof. Alois Jungbauer from the University of Natural Resources and Applied Life Sciences Vienna. 

Prof. Bonn gave a broad overview of the work in his Institute of Analytical Chemistry and Radiochemistry is involved in, Dr. Erni talked and built a convincing case for method development using "Quality by Design". Since his retirement, Dr. Erni has focused on this field allowing him to share his life long experience in the pharmaceutical industry through tutorials and courses in this field. 

Dr. Lottspeich gave an impressive account of the status in proteomics especially focusing on expectations not met in this field. He clearly expressed his preference for top-down proteomics but emphasized the necessity to reduce complexity while going down. He demonstrated the usage isotope code protein labeling towards that end. As usual, besides being competent, Dr. Lottspeich likes to provocate especially regarding several approaches for biomarker discovery by proteomics. 

Prof. Lindner has been working in proteomics as well but using CE-MS as the measurement tool. For benchmarking his methods he promoted the usage of the UPS2 Proteomics Dynamic Range Standard Set. He worked with standard triple-tube CE-MS IF, with the Beckman CESI and with prototypes from Prof. David Chen (no data presented). He prefers the usage of PEI-coatings and talked favourably about a deactivation process introduced by Righetti, 5 years ago.  It was striking to see how the sensitivity of his CE-MS methods was quite comparable with LC-MS. However one needs to realize that only 1/1000th of the amount of peptide is needed in CE to achieve this sensitivity while at the same time the CE-MS method is very much orthogonal to LC-MS delivering complementary information on the proteomes under investigation. 

Agilent collaboration partner, Assoc. Prof. Hanno Stutz, University of Salzburg gave an overview of his work in charaterization of allergens with CE. 

From Agilent Technologies, Dr. Udo Huber contributed with tutorial style talks about UHPLC and optimization of UV-VIS detector optimization in UHPLC. It has been my priviledge to give an historical account of the development of HPLC from its infancy to the current status of UHPLC. My specific take on this task was to illustrate the HPLC development bycontributions, teamwork and innovation through Hupe & Busch, Hewlett Packard and nowadays Agilent Technologies. A copy of my talk is available from the menu "My Publications" on this web site.