Isotope Ratio Lab

In 2013,  Dale Schoeller transitioned to Faculty Emeritus in the Department of Nutritional Sciences.  He still leads an active lab located in the Biotechnology Center and continues to further his career in the field of obesity prevention.

Along with the Senior Research Specialist, Tim Shriver, M.S., the lab is active in the areas of doubly labeled water analysis and other light element stable isotope tracer analyses in nutrition research.

Product Internal UW Rate External Rate
18O (IRMS) $31.82 $48.68
2H (IRMS) $33.48 $51.22
2H and 18O via CRDS available for water
samples only, please inquire
13C in CO2 $12.07 $18.47
13C & 15N in Dry Matter* $16.75 $25.62
Consumables Fee $220 $336
Urinary Nitrogen $22.93 $35.08
Bomb Calorimetry $36.33 $55.58
Consulting (per hour) $94 $144
  • *Discounts available if sample is received instrument-ready.
  • Prices above do not include fees for internal quality control standards.


Isotope Ratio Lab

Reading for the new user

Applications and methods in the use of isotope ratio mass spectrometry for biological studies

Breath carbon stable isotope ratios identify changes in energy balance and substrate utilization in humans. Whigham LD, Butz DE, Johnson LK, Schoeller DA, Abbott DH, Porter WP, Cook ME. Int J Obes (Lond). 2014 Sep;38(9):1248-50. PMID: 24441037

Doubly labeled water analysis using cavity ring-down spectroscopy. Thorsen T, Shriver T, Racine N, Richman BA, Schoeller DA. Rapid Commun Mass Spectrom. 2011. PMID: 21154648

The natural 13C abundance of plasma glucose is a useful biomarker of recent dietary caloric sweetener intake. Cook CM, Alvig AL, Liu YQ, Schoeller DA. J Nutr. 2010 Feb;140(2):333-7. PMID: 20018804

Insights into energy balance from doubly labeled water. Schoeller DA. Int J Obes (Lond). 2008 Dec;32 Suppl 7:S72-5. PMID: 19136994

Validation of estimates of total body water in pediatric dialysis patients by deuterium dilution. Mendley SR, Majkowski NL, Schoeller DA. Kidney Int. 2005 May;67(5):2056-62. PMID: 15840057

Validation of deuterium-labeled fatty acids for the measurement of dietary fat oxidation during physical activity. Raman A, Blanc S, Adams A, Schoeller DA. J Lipid Res. 2004 Dec;45(12):2339-44. PMID:15342677

Geographical variations in the carbon isotope composition of the diet and hair in contemporary man. Nakamura K, Schoeller DA, Winkler FJ, Schmidt HL. Biomed Mass Spectrom. 1982 Sep;9(9):390-4. PMID: 7139058

Clinical diagnosis with the stable isotope 13C in CO2 breath tests: methodology and fundamental considerations. Schoeller DA, Schneider JF, Solomons NW, Watkins JB, Klein PD. J Lab Clin Med. 1977 Sep;90(3):412-21. PMID: 911387

IAEA Handbook – Assessment of Body Composition and Total Energy Expenditure in Humans Using Stable Isotope Techniques.  IAEA Human Health Series no. 3

Energy expenditure from doubly labeled water: some fundamental considerations in humans. Schoeller DA. Am J Clin Nutr 1983 Dec;38 (6): 999-1005. PMID: 6650456

Measurement of energy expenditure in free-living humans by using doubly labeled water.Schoeller DA. J Nutr. 1988 Nov;118(11):1278-89. PMID: 3142975

Energy expenditure by doubly labeled water: validation in humans and proposed calculation. Schoeller DA, Ravussin E, Schutz Y, Acheson KJ, Baertschi P, Jéquier E. Am J Physiol. 1986 May;250(5 Pt 2):R823-30. PMID: 3085521

Total body water measurement in humans with 180 and 2H labeled water.  Schoeller DA, van Santen E, Peterson DW, Dietz W, Jaspan J, and Klein,PD. Am J Clin Nutr 1980 Dec; (33):2686-2693.

Thermo Delta Plus Isotope Ratio Mass Spectrometer used extensively for the measurement of 2H/1H in water using a chromium reduction inlet.  This magnetic sector instrument is optimized for hydrogen isotope ratio analysis of water samples between 0.2 and 1 g, although analysis of samples as small as 1 uL can be performed. The precision of the d2H measurement is 0.5 permil or 0.08 ppm.

Thermo Delta V Isotope Ratio Mass Spectrometer used extensively for the measurement of 13C/12C, 15N/14N, 18O/16O.  The instrument is equipped with gas bench and elemental analyzer inlets.  The gas bench is used for measurement of 13C/12C in carbon dioxide, and 18O/16O in water by equilibration with carbon dioxide. Specimen size for carbon dioxide is 0.05 mL (STP) and water is 1 g. Precisions are d13C = 0.1 permil (1 ppm) and d18O = 0.1 permil (0.06 ppm).  The elemental analyzer is used for bulk sample analysis of 13C/12C and 15N/14N.  Sample size is 0.5 mg of organic material.  Precisions are d13C = 0.1 permil (1 ppm) and d15N= 0.2 permil (0.6 ppm).

Picarro L2140-i Cavity Ring-down Analyzer used for the analysis of 1H/2H, 18O/16O and 17O/16O in water.  Water specimens of 0.2 g are required, but smaller samples can be analyzed upon special request. Precisions are d2H = 0.1 permil (0.02 ppm) and d18O = 0.03 permil (.02 ppm).