Comparison of inert supports in laser desorption/ionization mass spectrometry of peptides: pencil lead, porous silica gel, DIOS-chip and NALDI target.
ABSTRACT In the search for alternative inert surfaces replacing silicon chips in Desorption/Ionization On porous Silicon (DIOS)-like mass spectrometry analyses, nanostructured silicon-based NALDI chips were evaluated in Laser Desorption/Ionization (LDI) of peptides. Comparisons were made using commercially available DIOS chips (MassPREP-DIOS-target), amorphous carbon powder from lead pencil and porous silica gel used for chromatographic purposes as reference supports. A set of synthetic model peptides presenting variable amino acid sequences of various lengths was analyzed under all conditions. The LDI responses of the four 'matrix-free' techniques were compared, especially in terms of peptide detection sensitivity and overall experiment robustness.
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ABSTRACT: Analysis of low molecular weight compounds with matrix-assisted laser desorption/ionization time-of-flight mass spectrometry (MALDI-TOFMS) has been developed by using carbon nanotubes obtained from coal by arc discharge as the matrix. The carbon nanotube matrix functions as substrate to trap analytes of peptides, organic compounds, and beta-cyclodextrin deposited on its surface. It has been found that carbon nanotubes can transfer energy to the analyte under laser irradiation, which makes analytes well desorbed/ionized, and the interference of intrinsic matrix ions can be eliminated. At the same time, the fragmentation of the analyte can be avoided. A good sensitivity and excellent reproducibility of the spectrum signals are achieved. It is believed that this work not only will open a new field for applications of carbon nanotubes, but also will offer a new technique for high-speed analysis of low molecular weight compounds in areas such as metabolism research and characterization of natural products.Analytical Chemistry 12/2003; 75(22):6191-5. · 5.70 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: Dynamic electrowetting on nanostructured silicon surfaces is demonstrated as an effective method for improving detection sensitivity in matrix-free laser desorption/ionization mass spectrometry. Without electrowetting, silicon surfaces comprising dense fields of oriented nanofilaments are shown to provide efficient ion generation and high spectral peak intensities for deposited peptides bound to the nanofilaments through hydrophobic interactions. By applying an electrical bias to the silicon substrate, the surface energy of the oxidized nanofilaments can be dynamically controlled by electrowetting, thereby allowing aqueous buffer to penetrate deep into the nanofilament matrix. The use of electrowetting is shown to result in enhanced interactions between deposited peptides and the nanofilament silicon surface, with improved signal-to-noise ratio for detected spectral peaks. An essential feature contributing to the observed performance enhancement is the open-cell nature of the nanofilament surfaces, which prevents air from becoming trapped within the pores and limiting solvent penetration during electrowetting. The combination of nanofilament silicon and dynamic electrowetting is shown to provide routine detection limits on the order of several attomoles for a panel of model peptides.Analytical Chemistry 05/2008; 80(8):2973-81. · 5.70 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: Dense arrays of single-crystal silicon nanowires (SiNWs) have been used as a platform for laser desorption/ionization mass spectrometry of small molecules, peptides, protein digests, and endogenous and xenobiotic metabolites in biofluids. Sensitivity down to the attomole level has been achieved on the nanowire surfaces by optimizing laser energy, surface chemistry, nanowire diameter, length, and growth orientation. An interesting feature of the nanowire surface is that it requires lower laser energy as compared to porous silicon and MALDI to desorb/ionize small molecules, therefore reducing background ion interference. Taking advantage of their high surface area and fluid wicking capabilities, SiNWs were used to perform chromatographic separation followed by mass analysis of the separated molecules providing a unique platform that can integrate separation and mass spectrometric detection on a single surface.Analytical Chemistry 04/2005; 77(6):1641-6. · 5.70 Impact Factor