Mass spectrometry microbial identification system

VITEK® MS is an automated mass spectrometry microbial identification system that uses Matrix Assisted Laser Desorption Ionization Time-of-Flight (MALDI-TOF) technology. VITEK® MS contains a comprehensive IVD-CE marked database for bacteria and fungi, including mycobacteria, Nocardia and moulds.

  • Robust & accurate ID with Advanced Spectra Classifier
  • Seamless integration of ID/AST results for optimized workflow
  • Complete traceability & flexibility
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Rapid & clear identification

In just minutes the VITEK® MS can provide single-choice identification at the species, genus, or group level. Clinicians receive quick information to adjust therapy for better overall patient care and outcomes.


  1. The target slide is prepared and introduced to a high-vacuum environment.
  2. A precise laser burst ionizes the sample.
  3. A “cloud” of proteins is released and accelerated by an electric charge.
  4. After passing through the ring electrode, the proteins’ Time of Flight is recorded using a formula from the time recorded.
  5. Proteins are detected with a sensor to create a spectrum that represents the protein makeup of each sample.


Accurate, robust results

bioMerieux’s proprietary Advanced Spectra Classifier offers robust and accurate results needed for optimal patient-care decisions. The VITEK® MS system reads each spectrum as a series of peaks that are detected and sorted by mass and intensity. With the use of the Advance Spectra Classifier, better discrimination is provided as every peak is considered in the calculation of the identification result. There are no spectra comparisons, and the reference spectra are not embedded in the commercial software.

The VITEK® MS contains a population built database, accounting for diversity among strains within the same species, leading to  robust and accurate performance without the need to modify scores

The database is built to allow for better discrimination between species.  This is accomplished by including spectra for each species generated from:

  • An average of >14 isolates/species and average of 36 spectra/species
  • Geographical diversity of isolates
  • Isolates of different sample origins (e.g. blood, tissue, etc.)
  • Isolates subcultured on different media
  • Isolates with different incubation times

VITEK® MS V3: A comprehensive database update for mycobacteria, Nocardia, and moulds

The new VITEK® MS V3 IVD-CE marked database for bacteria and fungi now contains mycobacteria, Nocardia and moulds.  This enhanced database includes Mycobacteria tuberculosis (TB), non-tuberculous mycobacteria (NTM), dermatophytes and dymorphic fungi, including the most prevalent species relevant to patient infections. The ability to quickly identify these difficult organisms on a mass spectrometry system allows microbiologists to provide clinicians with actionable results to aid in quicker treatment for diseases such as tuberculosis, osteomyelitis caused by NTM, and serious fungal infections.

VITEK® MS’s excellent performance in identifying mycobacteria, Nocardia and moulds, allows results to be rapidly released to physicians for better patient care. This helps hospitals save both money (molecular probes, sequencing, send-outs) and time (ability to bring testing in-house, and faster identification of these difficult organisms).

Optimized workflow and Seamless ID/AST integration

VITEK® MS is designed specifically for optimized workflow in the microbiology laboratory. Its 4-slide capacity enables parallel preparation of samples by four different technologists at separate workstations, with placement on the instrument at the same time. With 48 sample spots per target slide, 192 isolates can be tested per run

  • Guided slide preparation for both ID and AST built into the VITEK® MS Prep Station
  • Very few steps to obtain a result – same day ID and AST results
  • Less hands-on time to focus on more value added tasks
  • High capacity for large volume labs (192 samples/run) and small sections of 16 for small to medium size labs


Myla®, bioMérieux’s advanced middleware solution, offers real-time reporting and seamless integration of the ID and AST results from VITEK® MS and VITEK® 2.

Easy-to-read results viewed in Myla®

Easy-to-read results viewed in Myla®


VITEK® SOLUTIONS: Complete traceability and flexibility

VITEK® MS provides complete traceability and flexibility that contributes to overall lab efficiency and confidence.

  • Barcodes on reagents and disposables provide traceability by automatically linking ID with AST results for each isolate.
  • Disposable slides:
    • Reduce risk of erroneous results from contamination
    • Reduce chemical safety hazard issues.
    • 3 acquisition areas or groups, each with a calibration spot
  • Automatic verification of operation, tuning and alignment is transparent to the user.


Broad technical specifications and reference numbers

VITEK® MS Technical Data


  • 337 nm nitrogen laser, fixed focus
  • Maximum pulse rate - 50 Hz (50 laser shots per second)
  • Near normal (on-axis) incidence of the laser beam to the sample
  • Laser power and laser aim under software control


  • Linear flight tube of 1.2 m drift length
  • Vacuum maintained by two turbomolecular pumps (nominal 250 l/s) with rotary backing
  • Beam blanking to deflect unwanted high intensity signals e.g. matrix ions


  • Size (w h d) - 0.7 m x 1.92 m x 0.85 m, minimum distance to wall at back is 100 mm
  • Weight - 330 kg excluding data system

Installation Requirements

  • Electrical
    • 200 VAC, 50/60 Hz, 1000 VA single phase OR
    • 230 VAC, 50/60 Hz, 1000 VA single phase
  • A ‘clean’, stable and continuous mains supply is required for reliable operation
  • Temperature - ambient 18° to 26° C
  • Relative humidity - less than 70% non condensing
  • Vibration free, firm, level floor, at least 330 kg supported at four points

Mass Range

  • 1 to 500 kDa


VITEK® MS Components

The VITEK® MS Prep station is used to prepare the VITEK® MS target slides and
VITEK® 2 AST cards. Simple scanning integrates the ID and AST preparation at the bench with complete barcoded traceability. Easy to use software keeps track of which spots have been prepared by the user.


The VITEK® MS Acquisition Station is directly connected to the VITEK® MS instrument. It displays the instrument status and acquires the sample spectra from the instrument. The spectra are then sent to Myla from the acquisition station for analysis.



Myla® Server contains the MYLA® software and is a middleware solution. For VITEK® MS, MYLA® is connected to both the VITEK® MS Prep Station and VITEK® MS Acquisition Station providing complete integration and traceability of all individual patient samples and their results. Connectivity to the LIS and other instruments in the laboratory allows all laboratory data to be grouped together and viewed in one place.


Pioneering diagnostics