Waters Corporation
  • Milford, MA, United States
Recent publications
Introduction: Similar to what it has been reported with preceding viral epidemics (such as MERS, SARS, or influenza), SARS-CoV-2 infection is also affecting the human immunometabolism with long-term consequences. Even with underreporting, an accumulated of almost 650 million people have been infected and 620 million recovered since the start of the pandemic; therefore, the impact of these long-term consequences in the world population could be significant. Recently, the World Health Organization recognized the post-COVID syndrome as a new entity, and guidelines are being established to manage and treat this new condition. However, there is still uncertainty about the molecular mechanisms behind the large number of symptoms reported worldwide. Aims and Methods: In this study we aimed to evaluate the clinical and lipidomic profiles (using non-targeted lipidomics) of recovered patients who had a mild and severe COVID-19 infection (acute phase, first epidemic wave); the assessment was made two years after the initial infection. Results: Fatigue (59%) and musculoskeletal (50%) symptoms as themost relevant and persistent. Functional analyses revealed that sterols, bile acids, isoprenoids, and fatty esters were the predicted metabolic pathways affected in both COVID-19 and post- COVID-19 patients. Principal Component Analysis showed differences between study groups. Several species of phosphatidylcholines and sphingomyelins were identified and expressed in higher levels in post-COVID-19 patients compared to controls. The paired analysis (comparing patients with an active infection and 2 years after recovery) show 170 dysregulated features. The relationship of such metabolic dysregulations with the clinical symptoms, point to the importance of developing diagnostic and therapeuthic markers based on cell signaling pathways.
• The metabolism and pharmacokinetics of fasiglifam (TAK-875, 2-[(3S)-6-[[3-[2,6-dimethyl-4-(3-methylsulfonylpropoxy)phenyl]phenyl]methoxy]-2,3-dihydro-1-benzofuran-3-yl]acetic acid), a selective free fatty acid receptor 1 (FFAR1)/GPR40 agonist, were studied following intravenous (5 mg/kg) and oral administration (10 and 50 mg/kg) to male and female Sprague Dawley rats. • Following intravenous dosing at 5 mg/kg, peak observed plasma concentrations of 8.8/9.2 μg/ml were seen in male and female rats respectively. • Following oral dosing, peak plasma concentrations at 1 h of ca. 12.4/12.9 μg/ml for 10 mg/kg and 76.2/83.7 μg/ml for 50 mg/kg doses were obtained for male and female rats respectively. Drug concentrations then declined in the plasma of both sexes with t1/2’s of 12.4 (male) and 11.2 h (female). Oral bioavailability was estimated to be 85-120% in males and females at both dose levels. • Urinary excretion was low, but in a significant sex-related difference, female rats eliminated ca. 10-fold more drug-related material by this route. • Fasiglifam was the principal drug-related compound in plasma, with 15 metabolites, including the acyl glucuronide, also detected. In addition to previously identified metabolites, a novel biotransformation, that produced a side-chain shortened metabolite via elimination of CH2 from the acetyl side chain was noted with implications for drug toxicity.
Upon recently studying the use of pressure gradients during liquid chromatography (LC), it was noted that pressure differentials across a column can have a significant impact on peak shape, not just retention as has been noted several times before. Theoretical models and thought experiments were performed here to more carefully study these effects. Two situations have been elucidated. The first is one that reflects a protein reversed phase separation wherein solute retention increases with pressure. In this condition, it has been found that a positive pressure gradient will result in band broadening while a negative pressure gradient will help yield sharper peaks. The second case that has come to be better appreciated is when solute retention decreases with pressure, which can occur in protein ion exchange (IEX) and hydrophobic interaction chromatography (HIC). In this situation, a positive pressure gradient will conversely result in peak sharpening, and a negative pressure gradient will introduce band broadening. These observations have facilitated making new fundamental understandings on pressurized separations which has in turn made it possible to begin envisioning new ways of and reasons for applying pressure enhanced LC methods.
In this paper, we describe denaturing and non-denaturing ion-pair reversed-phase liquid chromatography (RPLC) methods for analyzing small interfering ribonucleic acid (siRNA). Drug formulations consisting of one or two siRNA duplexes were analyzed in non-denaturing conditions at a low column temperature to separate intact duplexes from single-stranded oligonucleotide contaminants and quantify them. In a denaturing method, we used an elevated column temperature to ensure the denaturation of siRNA duplexes into their single-stranded oligonucleotide counterparts. The goal of the denaturing LC method was to investigate the impurities in daughter oligonucleotides in siRNA. A column with chemically modified C18 column hardware showed improvements in analytical performance for nucleic acids compared to a conventional C18 stainless-steel column with the same pore size.
Laminin polymerization is the major step in basement membranes assembly. Its failures cause laminin N-terminal domain lamininopathies including Pierson syndrome. We have employed cryo-electron microscopy to determine a 3.7 Å structure of the trimeric laminin polymer node containing α1, β1 and γ1 subunits. The structure reveals the molecular basis of calcium-dependent formation of laminin lattice, and provides insights into polymerization defects manifesting in human disease. In this work the authors report the cryo-EM structure of the laminin polymer node and reveal the molecular basis of calcium-dependent formation of laminin lattice. The work provides insights into laminin polymerization defects manifesting in human disease.
Accurate identification and quantification of drugs and their metabolites (analytes) in biological matrices is an analytical foundation of clinical and forensic toxicology. For decades, liquid chromatography interfaced by electrospray ionization with tandem mass spectrometry (LC-ESI-MS/MS) has been a widely used technology for analysis in the field of toxicology, as well as in many other fields of bioscience. It is also known that ion response in LC-ESI-MS/MS analysis is influenced by coeluting biological compounds and that preanalytical sample clean-up is often insufficient in removing these interferences. As a result, a normalization technique is commonly used for assessment and compensation of matrix effects encountered in routine analysis. Internal standardization with a stable isotope analog of the analyte is the predominant normalization technique used in LC-ESI-MS/MS analysis. The technique, however, requires commercial availability or costly custom synthesis of an isotopic analog specific for each analyte. Here we describe an alternative technique for matrix normalization for use in high-volume, multianalyte testing without the need for isotope analogs. The technique involves analysis of the original sample (neat analysis) followed by analysis of a second sample aliquot (spike analysis) that has been fortified with a controlled amount of reference analyte. A calibration procedure similar to internal standardization is employed, using an ion response ratio of neat to fortified analyte. As a demonstration of the technique in multianalyte testing, we provide a detailed protocol for simultaneous detection and quantification of 102 drugs and drug metabolites in human urine. We also provide a support protocol for addition of new analytes to the multianalyte panel, allowing convenient collection of the validation data during routine testing. The matrix normalization technique and testing principles may be applicable to a wide range of analytes and biological matrices, not only those encountered in toxicology but also in other fields of bioscience. © 2023 Wiley Periodicals LLC. Basic Protocol: Detection and quantification of 102 toxicology analytes in urine by LC-ESI-MS/MS analysis using the threshold accurate calibration technique Support Protocol: Method for addition and validation of new analytes to expand the Basic Protocol.
Background: Ultra-performance liquid chromatography (UPLC)-MSE/quadrupole time-of-flight (QTOF) high-resolution mass spectrometry employs untargeted, data-independent acquisition in a dual mode that simultaneously collects precursor ions and product ions at low and ramped collision energies, respectively. However, algorithmic analysis of large-scale multivariate data of comprehensive drug screening as well as the positivity criteria of drug identification have not been systematically investigated. It is also unclear whether ion ratio (IR), the intensity ratio of a defined product ion divided by the precursor ion, is a stable parameter that can be incorporated into the MSE/QTOF data analysis algorithm. Methods: IR of 91 drugs were experimentally determined and variation of IR was investigated across 5 concentrations measured on 3 different days. A data-driven machine learning approach was employed to develop multivariate linear regression (MLR) models incorporating mass error, retention time, number of detected fragment ions and IR, accuracy of isotope abundance, and peak response using drug-supplemented urine samples. Performance of the models was evaluated in an independent data set of unknown clinical urine samples in comparison with the results of manual analysis. Results: IR of most compounds acquired by MSE/QTOF were low and concentration-dependent (i.e., IR increased at higher concentrations). We developed an MLR model with composite score outputs incorporating 7 parameters to predict positive drug identification. The model achieved a mean accuracy of 89.38% in the validation set and 87.92% agreement in the test set. Conclusions: The MLR model incorporating all contributing parameters can serve as a decision-support tool to facilitate objective drug identification using UPLC-MSE/QTOF.
There are as many measurement values of the true column hold-up volume, V0, as techniques applied to evaluate this most important property in liquid chromatography (LC). The relative errors made on V0 measurements using conventional “non-retained” markers—such as acetone, uracil, or thiourea in reversed-phase liquid chromatography (RPLC), or benzene or acenaphthene in hydrophilic interaction chromatography (HILIC)—can be as large as ±30%. This situation is extremely confusing for LC users who wish to classify and predict the retention behavior of LC columns. In this work, along with advances in mass spectrometry (MS) instrumentation, the hold-up volume of any LC column—including, but not limited to, RPLC, HILIC, ion exchange chromatography (IEX), and mixed-mode columns—is accurately measured by injecting labeled deuterated acetonitrile (CD3CN) molecules and detecting them selectively by MS-single ion reaction (m/z = 45) using non-labeled and pure acetonitrile (CH3CN) as the eluent. This proposed harmonization of all conventional V0 measurement methods is illustrated and successfully applied to RPLC, HILIC, anion exchange (AEX), and RP-AEX mixed-mode chromatography, irrespective of the mobile phase composition selected.
The pandemic readiness toolbox needs to be extended, targeting different biomolecules, using orthogonal experimental set-ups. Here, we build on our Cov-MS effort using LC-MS, adding SISCAPA technology to enrich proteotypic peptides of the SARS-CoV-2 nucleocapsid (N) protein from trypsin-digested patient samples. The Cov2MS assay is compatible with most matrices including nasopharyngeal swabs, saliva, and plasma and has increased sensitivity into the attomole range, a 1000-fold improvement compared to direct detection in a matrix. A strong positive correlation was observed with qPCR detection beyond a quantification cycle of 30-31, the level where no live virus can be cultured. The automatable sample preparation and reduced LC dependency allow analysis of up to 500 samples per day per instrument. Importantly, peptide enrichment allows detection of the N protein in pooled samples without sensitivity loss. Easily multiplexed, we detect variants and propose targets for Influenza A and B detection. Thus, the Cov2MS assay can be adapted to test for many different pathogens in pooled samples, providing longitudinal epidemiological monitoring of large numbers of pathogens within a population as an early warning system.
For high throughput native mass spectrometry (MS) protein characterization, it is advantageous to desalt and separate proteins by size exclusion chromatography (SEC). Sensitivity, resolution, and speed in these methods remain limited by standard SEC columns. Moreover, the efficient packing of small bore columns is notoriously difficult. SEC sensitivity is inherently limited because solutes are not focused into concentrated bands and low affinity native complexes may dissociate on column. Recent work evaluated the suitability of crosslinked gel media in small bore formats for online desalting. Here, small bore format online SEC for native MS studies is again investigated but with alternative materials. We systematically studied the utility of diol and hydroxy terminated polyethylene oxide (PEO) bonded 1.7 μm organosilica particles as packed into 1 mm ID stainless steel (SS) hardware and hardware treated with hydrophilic hybrid surface technology (h-HST). For the equivalent diol-bonded particle and hardware, UV limits of detection (LODs) were reduced 32 to 89% with a microflow separation (15 µL/min) on a 1 × 50 mm column as compared to a 4.6 × 150 mm high-flow separation (300 µL/min) at the same linear velocity. Run times were also shortened by 45%. A switch from SS to h-HST hardware led to a significant reduction in secondary interactions and a corresponding improvement in detection limits for trastuzumab, myoglobin, IgG and albumin for both UV and MS. Coupling of the small bore columns to multichannel microflow emitters resulted in 10 to 100-fold gains in MS sensitivity, depending on the analyte. MS LOD values were significantly reduced into the low attomole ranges. Columns were then evaluated for their effects on the preservation of complexes, including concanavalin A, in its apo and ligand-bound states, and three therapeutically relevant noncovalent systems previously undetected on large column formats. The results suggest that the detection of large complexes by SEC is not just a function of sensitivity but is directly affected by chemical secondary interactions. The ability to detect 0.1 to 1 MDa complexes, with between 1 and 40 micromolar dissociation constants, represents a critical advancement for high-throughput native MS workflows as applied to the analysis of therapeutics.
Mass spectrometry imaging is a frontier technique which connects classical mass spectrometry with ion imaging. Various types of chemicals could be visualized in their native tissues using mass spectrometry imaging. Up to now, the most commonly applied mass spectrometry imaging techniques are matrix assisted laser desorption ionization mass spectrometry imaging, desorption electrospray ionization mass spectrometry imaging and secondary ion mass spectrometry imaging. This review gives an introduction to the principles, development and applications of commonly applied mass spectrometry imaging techniques, and then illustrates the application of mass spectrometry imaging in the investigation of traditional Chinese medicine. Recently, mass spectrometry imaging has been adopted to explore the spatial distribution of endogenous metabolites in traditional Chinese medicine. Data collected from mass spectrometry imaging can be further utilized to search for marker components of traditional Chinese medicine, discover new compounds from traditional herbs, and differentiate between medicinal plants that are similar in botanical features. Moreover, mass spectrometry imaging also plays a role in revealing the pharmacological and toxicological mechanisms of traditional Chinese medicine.
While it is generally accepted that oxidative stress impacts the diabetic kidney and contributes to pathogenesis, there is a substantial lack of knowledge about the molecular entity and anatomic location of a variety of reactive species. Here we provide a novel “oxidative stress map” of the diabetic kidney – the first of its kind, and identify specific, oxidized and other reactive lipids and their location. We used the db/db mouse model and Desorption Electrospray Ionization (DESI) mass spectrometry combined with heatmap image analysis. We analyzed a comprehensive array of phospholipid peroxide species in normal (db/m) and diabetic (db/db) kidneys using DESI imaging. Oxilipidomics heatmaps of the kidneys were generated focusing on phospholipids and their potential peroxidized products. We identified those lipids that undergo peroxidation in diabetic nephropathy. Several phospholipid peroxides and their spatial distribution were identified that were specific to the diabetic kidney, with significant enrichment in oxygenated phosphatidylethanolamines (PE) and lysophosphatidylethanolamine. Beyond qualitative and semi-quantitative information about the targets, the approach also reveals the anatomic location and the extent of lipid peroxide signal propagation across the kidney. Our approach provides novel, in-depth information of the location and molecular entity of reactive lipids in an organ with a very heterogeneous landscape. Many of these reactive lipids have been previously linked to programmed cell death mechanisms. Thus, the findings may be relevant to understand what impact phospholipid peroxidation has on cell and mitochondria membrane integrity and redox lipid signaling in diabetic nephropathy.
Rationale: Isomeric separation of prostanoids is often a challenge and requires chromatography and time-consuming sample preparation. Multiple prostanoid isomers have distinct in vivo functions crucial to understand the inflammation process, including prostaglandins E2 (PGE2 ) and D2 (PGD2 ). High-resolution Ion Mobility Spectrometry (IMS) based on linear ion transport in low-to-moderate electric fields and nonlinear ion transport in strong electric fields emerges as a broad approach for rapid separations prior to mass spectrometry (MS). Methods: Derivatization with Girard's reagent T (GT) was used to overcome inefficient ionization of prostanoids in negative ionization mode due to poor deprotonation of the carboxylic acid group. Three high-resolution IMS techniques including linear cyclic IMS (cIMS), linear Trapped IMS (TIMS), and nonlinear high-Field Asymmetric Waveform IMS (FAIMS) were compared for the isomeric separation and endogenous detection of prostanoids present in intestinal tissue. Results: Direct infusion of GT derivatized prostanoids proved to increase the ionization efficiency in positive ionization mode by a factor of >10, which enabled detection of these molecules in endogenous concentration levels. The high-resolution IMS comparison revealed its potential for rapid isomeric analysis of biologically relevant prostanoids. Strengths and weaknesses of both linear and nonlinear IMS were discussed. Endogenous prostanoid detection in intestinal tissue extracts demonstrated the applicability of our approach in biomedical research. Conclusions: The applied derivatization strategy offers high sensitivity and improved stereoisomeric separation for screening of complex biological systems. The high-resolution IMS comparison indicated that the best sensitivity and resolution are achieved by linear and nonlinear IMS, respectively.
Disulfide bonds in proteins have a substantial impact on protein structure, stability, and biological activity. Localizing disulfide bonds is critical for understanding protein folding and higher-order structure. Conventional top-down mass spectrometry (TD-MS), where only terminal fragments are assigned for disulfide-intact proteins, can access disulfide information, but suffers from low fragmentation efficiency, thereby limiting sequence coverage. Here, we show that assigning internal fragments generated from TD-MS enhances the sequence coverage of disulfide-intact proteins by 20-60% by returning information from the interior of the protein sequence, which cannot be obtained by terminal fragments alone. The inclusion of internal fragments can extend the sequence information of disulfide-intact proteins to near complete sequence coverage. Importantly, the enhanced sequence information that arise from the assignment of internal fragments can be used to determine the relative position of disulfide bonds and the exact disulfide connectivity between cysteines. The data presented here demonstrates the benefits of incorporating internal fragment analysis into the TD-MS workflow for analyzing disulfide-intact proteins, which would be valuable for characterizing biotherapeutic proteins such as monoclonal antibodies and antibody-drug conjugates.
Objectives During 2020, the UK’s Department of Health and Social Care (DHSC) established the Moonshot programme to fund various diagnostic approaches for the detection of SARS-CoV-2, the pathogen behind the COVID-19 pandemic. Mass spectrometry was one of the technologies proposed to increase testing capacity. Methods Moonshot funded a multi-phase development programme, bringing together experts from academia, industry and the NHS to develop a state-of-the-art targeted protein assay utilising enrichment and liquid chromatography tandem mass spectrometry (LC-MS/MS) to capture and detect low levels of tryptic peptides derived from SARS-CoV-2 virus. The assay relies on detection of target peptides, ADETQALPQRK (ADE) and AYNVTQAFGR (AYN), derived from the nucleocapsid protein of SARS-CoV-2, measurement of which allowed the specific, sensitive, and robust detection of the virus from nasopharyngeal (NP) swabs. The diagnostic sensitivity and specificity of LC-MS/MS was compared with reverse transcription quantitative real-time polymerase chain reaction (RT-qPCR) via a prospective study. Results Analysis of NP swabs (n=361) with a median RT-qPCR quantification cycle (Cq) of 27 (range 16.7–39.1) demonstrated diagnostic sensitivity of 92.4% (87.4–95.5), specificity of 97.4% (94.0–98.9) and near total concordance with RT-qPCR (Cohen’s Kappa 0.90). Excluding Cq>32 samples, sensitivity was 97.9% (94.1–99.3), specificity 97.4% (94.0–98.9) and Cohen’s Kappa 0.95. Conclusions This unique collaboration between academia, industry and the NHS enabled development, translation, and validation of a SARS-CoV-2 method in NP swabs to be achieved in 5 months. This pilot provides a model and pipeline for future accelerated development and implementation of LC-MS/MS protein/peptide assays into the routine clinical laboratory.
Rapid evaporative ionization mass spectrometry (REIMS) is a direct tissue metabolic profiling technique used to accurately classify tissues using pre-built mass spectral databases. The reproducibility of the analytical equipment, methodology and tissue classification algorithms has yet to be evaluated over multiple sites, which is an essential step for developing this technique for future clinical applications. In this study, we harmonized REIMS methodology using single-source reference material across four sites with identical equipment: Imperial College London (UK); Waters Research Centre (Hungary); Maastricht University (The Netherlands); and Queen’s University (Canada). We observed that method harmonization resulted in reduced spectral variability across sites. Each site then analyzed four different types of locally-sourced food-grade animal tissue. Tissue recognition models were created at each site using multivariate statistical analysis based on the different metabolic profiles observed in the m/z range of 600–1000, and these models were tested against data obtained at the other sites. Cross-validation by site resulted in 100% correct classification of two reference tissues and 69–100% correct classification for food-grade meat samples. While we were able to successfully minimize between-site variability in REIMS signals, differences in animal tissue from local sources led to significant variability in the accuracy of an individual site’s model. Our results inform future multi-site REIMS studies applied to clinical samples and emphasize the importance of carefully-annotated samples that encompass sufficient population diversity.
The use of vacuum jacketed LC columns (VJC) to minimize on- and post-column band broadening to maximize chromatographic performance has been evaluated as a potential route to improved high throughput (HT) analysis. Here the use of the “VJC” approach has been applied to the HT bioanalysis of the antidiabetic GPR40 agonist drug fasiglifam in rat plasma samples obtained following a 5 mg/kg IV dose. The data obtained from a 1 min. VJC/MS-based analysis showed significant improvements compared to that from a conventional 2 min. UHPLC method for the drug. Notably, using VJC/MS with the rapid 1 min analysis provided a ca. 50% reduction in peak width coupled with a 2–5 fold higher peak response whilst doubling analytical throughput when compared to a conventional UHPLC/MS method. In addition, the increased resolution provided by the VJC system also improved the separation of fasiglifam from common matrix interferences such as co-extracted phospholipids thereby reducing the potential for matrix effects. The concatenation of these improvements suggests that the VJC approach may indeed provide a pathway to more sensitive, robust and high throughput drug bioanalysis, with particular advantages for drug discovery applications.
Concerns regarding the persistence, bioaccumulation behaviour, and toxicity of perfluorooctanoic acid and perfluorooctane sulfonic acid have resulted in the creation of thousands of replacement perfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS). This study reports on the discovery of fluorotelomer ethoxylates (FTEO) in indoor dust (9/15 samples), and industrial effluents (14/37 samples) using gas chromatographic cyclic ion mobility mass spectrometry (GC-cIMS). By filtering the detected unknowns by mass and collision-cross section, a series of FTEO homologues were revealed with the formula F-(CF2)n(C2H4O)xH, where n=6,8,10, and x=4-12. The highest concentrations were observed in samples collected from healthcare facilities, consistent with the potential use of these compounds in anti-fog products, sprays used to prevent condensation on eyeglasses. FTEOs were also detected in c. 40% of industrial effluent samples, with the highest concentrations in electroplating facilities, manufacturers of cosmetics and personal care products, and linen cleaning services for healthcare and work uniforms. These results suggest that FTEOs may well be widespread pollutants that are more persistent than previously thought, underlining the need for further study of their occurrence and potential impact to human health and the environment.
Lipid encapsulated messenger RNA (LNP mRNA) has garnered a significant amount of interest from the pharmaceutical industry and general public alike. This attention has been catalyzed by the clinical success of LNP mRNA for SARS-CoV-2 vaccination as well as future promises that might be fulfilled by the biotechnology pipeline, such as the in vivo delivery of a CRISPR/Cas9 complex that can edit patient cells to reduce levels of low-density lipoprotein. LNP mRNAs are comprised of various chemically diverse molecules brought together in a sophisticated intermolecular complex. This can make it challenging to achieve thorough analytical characterization. Nevertheless, liquid chromatography is becoming an increasingly relied upon technique for LNP mRNA analyses. Although there have been significant advances in all types of LNP mRNA analyses, this review focuses on recent developments and the possibilities of applying anion exchange (AEX) and ion pairing reversed phase (IP-RP) liquid chromatography for intact mRNAs as well as techniques for oligo mapping analysis, 5’ endcap testing and lipid compositional assays.
Institution pages aggregate content on ResearchGate related to an institution. The members listed on this page have self-identified as being affiliated with this institution. Publications listed on this page were identified by our algorithms as relating to this institution. This page was not created or approved by the institution. If you represent an institution and have questions about these pages or wish to report inaccurate content, you can contact us here.
716 members
Kate Yu
  • Pharmaceutical Business
Simon Hird
  • Food and Environment Market Development
34 Maple Street, 01757, Milford, MA, United States