Application of MALDI-TOF Mass Spectrometry in Clinical Virology: A Review

Fernando Cobo*
Section of Microbiology (Integrated Biotechnology Area), Hospital de Poniente. El Ejido, Almería, Spain

© Fernando Cobo; Licensee Bentham Open.

open-access license: This is an open access article licensed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution Non-Commercial License ( which permits unrestricted, non-commercial use, distribution and reproduction in any medium, provided the work is properly cited.

* Address correspondence to this author at the Section of Microbiology Section (Integrated Biotechnology Area), Hospital de Poniente. Ctra de Almerimar S/N, 04700 El Ejido, Almería, Spain; Tel: +34 950 022 638; Fax: +34 950 022 601; E-mail:


MALDI-TOF mass spectrometry is a diagnostic tool of microbial identification and characterization based on the detection of the mass of molecules. In the majority of clinical laboratories, this technology is currently being used mainly for bacterial diagnosis, but several approaches in the field of virology have been investigated. The introduction of this technology in clinical virology will improve the diagnosis of infections produced by viruses but also the discovery of mutations and variants of these microorganisms as well as the detection of antiviral resistance. This review is focused on the main current applications of MALDI-TOF MS techniques in clinical virology showing the state of the art with respect to this exciting new technology.

Keywords: : MALDI-TOF, mass spectrometry, viral diagnosis, genotyping.