Proteomics has largely been practiced through the separation of proteins by two dimensional gel electrophoresis. In the first dimension, the proteins are separated by isoelectric focusing, which resolves proteins on the basis of charge. In the second dimension, proteins are separated by molecular weight using SDS-PAGE. The gel is dyed with Coomassie Blue or silver to visualize the proteins. Spots on the gel are proteins that have migrated to specific locations.
The mass spectrometer has augmented proteomics. Mass mapping identifies a protein by cleaving it into short peptides and then deduces the protein's identity by matching the observed peptide masses against a sequence database. Tandem mass spectrometry, on the other hand, can get sequence information from individual peptides by isolating them, colliding them with a nonreactive gas, and then cataloging the fragment ions produced.
See also: Proteomics