It is a frequently debated question whether technology drives biology or whether biology drives the development of new technologies. This issue is discussed in this manuscript as an account that covers approximately a decade during which mass spectrometry and protein biochemistry have intersected. It is shown that the capabilities of the mass spectrometric methods, initially developed to address the specific need to identify proteins reliably and at high sensitivity soon transcended the intended task. The rapid development of mass spectrometric technologies applied to protein research has catalyzed entirely new experimental approaches and opened up new types of biological questions to experimentation, culminating in the field of proteomics. Some conclusions from this case study relating to technological research and the environment in which it is carried out are also discussed. © 2003 American Society for Mass Spectrometry.
Aebersold, R. (2003). A mass spectrometric journey into protein and proteome research. Journal of the American Society for Mass Spectrometry, 14(7), 685–695. https://doi.org/10.1016/S1044-0305(03)00289-7