Skip to main content
U.S. flag

An official website of the United States government

Official websites use .gov
A .gov website belongs to an official government organization in the United States.

Secure .gov websites use HTTPS
A lock ( ) or https:// means you’ve safely connected to the .gov website. Share sensitive information only on official, secure websites.

Universal Spectrum Identifier for mass spectra



Eric Deutsch, Yasset Perez-Riverol, Jeremy Carver, Shin Kawano, Luis Mendoza, Tim Van Den Bossche, Ralf Gabriels, Pierre-Alain Binz, Benjamin Pullman, Zhi Sun, Jim Shofstahl, Wout Bittremeieux, Tytus Mak, Joshua Klein, Yunping Zhu, Henry Lam, Juan Antonio Vizcaino, Nuno Bandeira


Mass spectra provide the ultimate evidence to support the findings of mass spectrometry proteomics studies in publications, and it is therefore crucial to be able to trace the conclusions back to the spectra. The Universal Spectrum Identifier (USI) provides a standardized mechanism for encoding a virtual path to any mass spectrum contained in datasets deposited to public proteomics repositories. USI enables greater transparency of spectral evidence, with more than 1 billion USI identifications from over 3 billion spectra already available through ProteomeXchange repositories.
Nature Methods


Proteomics Standards Initiative, PSI, mass spectrometry, proteomics, Universal Spectrum Identifier, USI, standards.


Deutsch, E. , Perez-Riverol, Y. , Carver, J. , Kawano, S. , Mendoza, L. , Van Den Bossche, T. , Gabriels, R. , Binz, P. , Pullman, B. , Sun, Z. , Shofstahl, J. , Bittremeieux, W. , Mak, T. , Klein, J. , Zhu, Y. , Lam, H. , Vizcaino, J. and Bandeira, N. (2021), Universal Spectrum Identifier for mass spectra, Nature Methods, [online],, (Accessed May 27, 2024)


If you have any questions about this publication or are having problems accessing it, please contact

Created July 2, 2021, Updated November 29, 2022