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Dr G John Langley BSc PhD CChem CSci FRSC

Associate Professor in Mass Spectrometry, Head of Characterisation and Analytics

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Dr G John Langley is Associate Professor in Mass Spectrometry within Chemistry at the University of Southampton.



John Langley has nearly 30 years’ experience in mass spectrometry and chromatography-mass spectrometry. He received a mass spectrometry PhD from the University of London where he started his working career.  He is a Chartered Chemist (1999), a Fellow of the Royal Society of Chemistry (1999) and a Chartered Scientist (2004); he leads the Characterisation and Analytics section in Chemistry at Southampton, heads SCAS (Southampton Chemistry Analytical Solutions (, is Chair of the Separation Science Group of the Royal Society of Chemistry ( and Vice President of the International Mass Spectrometry Foundation 2009-14, Secretary of IMSF ( He was previously Chair, Vice-Chair, General Secretary and Meetings Secretary of the British Mass Spectrometry Society, a member of the Organisation Committee for the International Mass Spectrometry Conference for Edinburgh 2003 and Kyoto 2012, and BMSS Annual Conferences (1999-2010)    

John has been a member of the Organisation Committees for a number of National and International meetings and conferences including the International Mass Spectrometry Conference Edinburgh 2003, Kyoto 2012 and Geneva 2014,and BMSS Annual Conferences 1999, 2001, 2002, 2004, 2005 and 2007 and a number of RSC Separation Science Group meetings. He is currently a member of the BMSS Advisory Board, the Scientific Advisory Group for Microsaic, mass spectrometry consultant for LGC (Teddington) and has previously been an expert witness.

He is a member of the EPSRC Peer Review College, a referee for Research Council and Charity research grant proposals, a member of the Editorial Board for Rapid Communications in Mass Spectrometry and a reviewer for all other leading mass spectrometry, chromatography and chemistry journals; was the European Member of IUPAC Task Group for Standard Definitions of Terms Relating to Mass Spectrometry.

The Langley research group ( are interested in the application of separation science and mass spectrometry as a routine tool for chemistry/chemical biology/oilfield chemistry as well as probing new areas for research using these tools. Specific interests are the application of hyphenated approaches (GC-MS, HPLC-MS & SFC-MS) to analysis of petrochemicals, oilfield, fuels and biofuels, research into analysis and detection of oligonucleotides and understanding fundamental MS/MS fragmentation processes and mechanism, the latter including the use of computational methods. John has been working with SFC-MS since 2004 and has an ongoing collaboration with Waters in this area, applying and developing Ultra Performance Convergence Chromatography-MS.

His innovative and unique research has led to 90+ publications in over 30 leading scientific journals which reflect the multidisciplinary nature of the applications of this research, including Nature, Analytical Chemistry, Analyst, Chem. Sci., Journal of the American Chemical Society, Journal of American Society for Mass Spectrometry, Rapid Communications in Mass Spectrometry and Journal of Chromatography A. Since 2012 John has been invited to speak at ~30 national and international meetings, including 10 invited international and national presentations.

The majority of the Langley group research activity has recently been aligned to the petrochemical industry, upstream, downstream areas and fuels (Energy and renewable fuels, BP and Innospec) though I also maintain innovative research in the active in oligonucleotide analysis (AstraZeneca) and lipid analysis with the Lipidomics Group in Southampton, Medicine. Applying new technologies and research approaches to a range of applications, e.g. impurity determination in therapeutic oligonucleotides. In the early nineties John worked with the Sussex group providing mass spectrometry expertise, analysis and data interpretation in the discovery of and a multitude of developments in the field of Fullerene chemistry.






Research interests

Dr. G. John Langley Research Group

Research keywords

Accurate mass, biofuels, electrospray, FT-MS, FT-ICR MS, GC-MS, high throughput, HPLC-MS, MALDI, mass spectrometry, MS/MS, oligonucleotides, open access, petrochemicals, SFC-MS.

Research funding

12 - 16 Innospec, A Study of Fuels by Separation Science & High Resolution Mass Spectrometry. G. J. Langley, £40,000.

11 - 16 Wellcome Trust, Characterisation of lipid oxidation by high accuracy mass spectrometry. A. Postle, H. Clark, G. J. Langley, V. H. Perry, G. Clough, A. Pringle, R. Djukanovic, A. Smith, £398,152.

09 – 12 BBSRC/Pfizer CASE, Development and implementation of Mass-Tagged Oligonucelotides as Bioanalytical Probes. G. J. Langley, £73,368.

08 - 11 EPSRC/BP CASE, Development and Application of MS and Chromatography Techniques for the Analysis of Bio Derived Components in Fuels and Lubricants. G.J.Langley, £63,789.

08 - 11 AstraZeneca, Mass spectrometry applications in pharmaceutical chemistry. G. J. Langley, £54,000.

06 - 09 BBSRC/Pfizer CASE. Facilitating rapid metabolite identification by using MS to determine fragmentation patterns that may be characteristic of the site of metabolism. G. J. Langley, £47,558


Research group(s)

Characterisation and Analytics

Research project(s)


PhD supervision

S. Powley (Y1), E. Wilmot (y1), A. Nasif (Y2), E. Elia (Y2), K. Patel (Y3) W. Ratsameepakai (Y4)

Key Publication(s)



John is involved in organisation and implementation of the Chemistry's key skills programmes.


Dr G John Langley
Chemistry University of Southampton Highfield Southampton SO17 1BJ

Room Number: 30/1067

Telephone: (023) 8059 2182

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