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Capillary Electrophoresis-Mass Spectrometry for Metabolomics


Admission requirements

Master students BPS. The course is also open to third-year BFW students and to other MSc students with a basic background in analytical chemistry or separation sciences.


The main objective of this course is to provide you with an overview of the main capillary electrophoresis-mass spectrometry (CE-MS) approaches used for metabolomics, including their working/separation mechanisms.
The course will be composed of both lectures and a grant writing assignment. The course will include lectures focused on capillary electrophoresis separation modes (including capillary coatings), electrospray ionization mass spectrometry, interfacing techniques for coupling CE to MS, CE-MS systems for the profiling of basic and acidic metabolites, CE-MS in comparison to other analytical techniques for metabolomics, volume-restricted metabolomics and the use of CE-MS for high-throughput metabolomics studies. The utility of CE-MS for metabolomics will be demonstrated by relevant biomedical/clinical examples, and the strengths and limitations of this approach in comparison to other techniques will also be highlighted.
Apart from (following) lectures, you will work individually on writing a research grant proposal using the criteria as set out for constructing a Veni research proposal for the Dutch Organization for Scientific Research (NWO). The scientific approach should be at least contain capillary electrophoresis as one of the approaches. You are totally free to come up with a challenging and innovative biological/clinical question or application. For the effective design of such a research proposal, a proper background in the basics of CE-MS is required.

Course objectives

At the end of the course, the candidate is able to:

  • explain the basics of capillary electrophoresis-mass spectrometry (CE-MS)

  • explain the concept of metabolomics and how to set-up a CE-MS-based analytical workflow to address a biological/clinical question

  • discuss the strengths and limitations of CE-MS for metabolomics studies

  • design a Veni grant proposal, in which CE(-MS) plays a key role, according to NWO guidelines


January 2021. For the specific course schedule, please go to Brightspace.

Mode of instruction

Lectures, self-study and student presentations.

Assessment method

The assessment is based on the scientific quality of your research proposal (70% of final grade) and of your presentation of the research proposal (30% of final grade).
For each component, the grade should be ≥ 5.0, and the final/average grade should be ≥ 5.5 to successfully complete this course.

Reading list

The following book is recommended for this course: Capillary Electrophoresis-Mass Spectrometry for Metabolomics by Rawi Ramautar, ISBN: 9781788012737, publisher: The Royal Society of Chemistry (


Application via uSis. Registration closes 1 month before the start of the course or earlier if the maximum number of students is reached.


Coordinator: Dr. Rawi Ramautar (, group leader Biomedical Microscale Analytics (


A minimum of 5 and a maximum of 24 participants applies to this course. Placement is based on the registration date.
The lectures will be partially online and on campus.

This information is without prejudice. Alterations can be made for next year.