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Mass photometry community comes together in Boston, MA

Updated: Feb 19

The mass photometry user meeting took place this year on the US East Coast, bringing together a community of scientists from biopharma and academia to share knowledge and discuss the latest advancements in the field of mass photometry.

The scientific meet-up hosted about 50 scientists who have been using mass photometry for biomolecular and AAV sample characterization. The program included scientific presentations in the morning and interactive sessions in the afternoon.


Scientific talks

The event kicked off with a welcome speech by Paul Davies, VP of Sales and Marketing at Refeyn, who was excited to meet the mass photometry community. He said:

It is amazing to see so many users and prospective users here today; this is a testament to the fact that the adoption of this technique for biophysical characterization has been growing quickly.

Talks at the mass photometry user meeting in Boston

The scientific program started with a keynote talk by Albert Heck, Distinguished professor at Utrecht University chairing the Biomolecular Mass Spectrometry and Proteomics group. Dr. Heck spoke about characterization of biomolecular assemblies with two complementary bioanalytical methods: mass photometry and native charge detection-mass spectrometry (CDMS). He discussed pros and cons of these single-molecule techniques in the context of immune complex characterization as well as gene-delivery vehicles.

One of the many questions the audience asked was whether mass photometry can be confidently used as a replacement for existing analytical technologies, or as a complementary method. Dr. Heck reflected:

This is a question many people ask; if you have evidence for something new confirmed by only one technique, don’t call it evidence yet. I encourage people to have data from two complementary techniques, which show exactly the same answer.

The program also featured presentations by Refeyn technical experts, who shared insights about new software features, new consumables and a new instrument, which will become available later in 2023. Some of the new solutions presented were demoed in the afternoon sessions.

Presentations by mass photometry users focused on how mass photometry fits into the bioanalytical toolbox for antibody discovery. Presentations showed its use in early stage, lead discovery, and lead optimization to check for antibody oligomerization, sample heterogeneity, and binding stoichiometry. Also, deployment of mass photometry in AAV analytics for characterization of empty, partial, full, and overfilled capsids was presented.

Refreshments and gift bags at the mass photometry user meeting

The session concluded with Refeyn co-founder and professor at Oxford University, Justin Benesch, who presented new data from his lab, demonstrating that more value is to be gained from multidimensional information collected with mass photometry.


Interactive sessions and product demos

In the afternoon, delegates had a chance to talk to Refeyn’s mass photometry experts as well as peers and discuss progress and challenges in the field of biophysical characterization of biological samples.

The delegates also had a chance to attend demonstrations of new products reaching the market later this year:

  • The consumables portfolio is expanding in 2023: Refeyn experts demoed a new instrument add-on and a consumable, which will be compatible with TwoMP and OneMP instruments, and will significantly expand the concentration range of samples that can be tested. This means that mass photometry measurements will soon be possible for samples concentrated up to tens of µM. The new solution generated lots of excitement and discussions about all the potential applications for which this could be used.

  • The software portfolio is also growing: Refeyn will be releasing a new software package for GMP-regulated environments for the SamuxMP product line. The delegates gained insight into the solution and how it addresses the requirements posed by the 21CFR11 and Annex 11.

Interactive sessions at the mass photometry user meeting

  • The instrument portfolio is getting a new member, too: A prototype of a brand-new instrument was revealed to the attendees of the user meeting. This instrument will be used for characterization of larger viral vectors used in gene therapy and is expected to enter the market in early 2024. The delegates were extremely interested in seeing the capabilities of the instrument and learning about a new workflow that will apply to this new instrument.


Networking reception

After a day full of stimulating scientific conversation, attendees were able to unwind at a networking reception, held at a rooftop terrace featuring views of the Boston skyline.

Networking Reception of the mass photometry user meeting

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