A Brief Retrospective of the Series

HPCE89Originally established as the International Symposium on High Performance Capillary Electrophoresis (HPCE), the first event was held April 10 – 12, 1989 at the Park Plaza Hotel in Boston, MA. The meeting was founded by Professor Barry Karger from Northeastern University, and sponsored by the Barnett Institute of Northeastern University, the Bay Area Chromatography Committee (BACC, predecessor of California Separation Science Society or CASSS), and chromatography instrument manufacturers. This first meeting featured oral and poster presentations that discussed the principles of separation in capillaries under high electrical fields; instrumentation development; and applications of HPCE, particularly in biotechnology. A summary of this meeting was published in Analytical Chemistry (Anal. Chem., 1989, 61, 413A–415A). 

This symposium was introduced at the moment when capillary electrophoresis branched off from the HPLC community, giving the technology the necessary focus at a time when capillary electrophoresis instrumentation was first being commercialized by Applied Biosystems, Beckman (later Beckman-Coulter), Hewlett-Packard (later Agilent Technologies). The symposium series was driven by the Scientific Advisory Board (SAB) under its diligent chairman Barry Karger until 2000 followed by Frantisek Svec. Leading scientists in the CE field were James Jorgenson, Frans Everaerts, Stellan Hjertén, Shigeru Terabe, Ed Yeung, and Heinz Engelhardt. The series was organized world-wide by Prof. Karger untill 2000 and later by CASSS in the USA. In Europe and Asia, the meetings were organized by separate bodies.

The SAB changed the name of these meetings at HPCE 2004 in Salzburg to MicroScale Bioseparations (MSB), since the attendees’ interests expanded into the related techniques of micro- and nano-HPLC, microfluidic separations, and Lab-on-a-Chip applications while the fascination with pure CE slowly faded. The stylized logo was created at the same time, and captured the acronym MSB in a DNA helix motif given the prominent role that electrical driven microseparations have played in DNA sequencing and early completion of the Human Genome Project.

At MSB 2012 in Geneva, Switzerland, Beckman-Coulter established the prestigious Arnold O. Beckman Medal and Award for Outstanding Scientific Achievements in The Field of Electrodriven Separations Techniques which has become an essential element of the series (see Arnold O. Beckman Award page).

Also, after the MSB 2012 symposium the SAB changed. Not just by including new members but especially by introducing new key concepts by which future meetings of the series will be organized (see Intend and Mission, MSB Essentials and MSB Core Format pages).The board also changed its name to "Strategic Program Committee" (SPC).

In consequence and in order to further broaden the scope of the series to a wider range of scientists, the SPC approved the acronym of MSB to refer to:

"Microscale Separations and Bioanalysis"

In 2016 that name was used the first time as the official conference name for MSB 2016 in Niagara-on-the-Lake, Canada, April 3-7, 2016.


Intent & Mission

The MSB series of symposia intends to be the ....

....leading venue for advances in fundamentals and application of microscale separations in bioanalysis ....

Our Mission is to …..

…. have MSB provide a forum for the discussion of fundamental and application-driven aspects of microscale separations and its application in bio-analysis at an international venue that assembles the thought-leaders from both the academic and industrial communities.

MSB Series Essentials

The strategic planning committee of the MicroScale Separations and Bio-analysis symposium series have developed a six-­point plan to integrate the essential attributes of electrical and pressure driven separations with the practice of coupling them with sample preparation and detection (mass spectrometry!) for practical application in bio-analysis

  1. Discussion of unpublished work
    An environment is provided that helps protect unpublished work through a series of confidentiality measures to be abide by conference attendees, an approach used successfully by the Gordon Conferences.

Past Symposia & Chairs

Past symposium dates and locations with the corresponding chairpersons are listed below:
Date Location Chairperson/s
1989 Boston Barry L. Karger
1990 San Francisco Barry L. Karger
1991 San Diego James W. Jorgenson
1992 Amsterdam Frans Everaerts
1993 Orlando Barry L. Karger
1994 San Diego Shigeru Terabe
1995 Würzburg Heinz Engelhardt
1996 Orlando Barry L.Karger
1997 Anaheim William S. Hancock
1997 Kyoto Shigeru Terabe
1998 Orlando Barry L. Karger, S. Fanali
1999 Palm Springs Edward S. Yeung
2000 Saarbrücken Heinz Engelhardt
2001 Boston Barry L. Karger, William S. Hancock
2002 Stockholm Douglas Westerlund
2003 San Diego Aran Paulus, Andras Guttman
2004 Salzburg Wolfgang Lindner
2005 New Orleans Michael Ramsey
2005 Kobe Y. Baba, K. Otsuka
2006 Amsterdam Gerard Rozing
2007 Vancouver Robert Kennedy
2008 Berlin Andreas Manz
2009 Boston Jonathan V. Sweedler
2009 Dalian Hanfa Zou
2010 Prague Frantisek Foret
2011 San Diego Annelise E. Barron
2012 Geneva F. Kalman, G. Rozing, J-L Veuthey
2012 Shanghai Rong Zeng
2013 Charlottesville Jeff D Chapman, James P Landers
2014 Pécs Ferenc Kilár, Attila Felinger, András Guttman
2015 Shanghai Fukui Zhang, Pengyuan Yang, Norman Dovichi, Amy Y. Guo
2016 Niagara at the Lake Philip Britz-McKibbin, Karen Waldron, Sergey Krylov
2017 Noordwijkerhout Rawi Ramautar, Govert Somsen