High Pressure MALDI-FTMS

The demonstration of High Pressure MALDI on a quadrupole time-of-flight mass spectrometer by Werner Ens’ group in Manitoba in 1999 clearly showed that use of a high background pressure of gas during the MALDI process can cool the internal vibrational energy of the laser desorbed ions.

This result convinced us to modify our MALDI-FTMS to allow us to pulse the gas pressure in the MALDI region up to 1-10 mbar during the laser pulse, which (after much tinkering) worked as predicted to cool the internal vibrational energy of the ions. This experiment has, so far, resulted in two publications and one grant being funded.

The publications are:

  • O’Connor, P. B.; Costello, C. E. A High Pressure Matrix-Assisted Laser Desorption/Ionization Fourier Transform Mass Spectrometry Ion Source for Thermal Stabilization of Labile Biomolecules Rapid Commun. Mass Spectrom. 2001, 15, 1862-1868. Link
  • O’Connor, P. B.; Mirgorodskaya, E.; Costello, C. E. High Pressure Matrix-Assisted Laser Desorption/Ionization Fourier Transform Mass Spectrometry for Minimization of Ganglioside Fragmentation J. Am. Soc. Mass Spectrom. 2002, 13, 402-407. Link

This project continues with exploration of coupling of Thin Layer Chromatography to High Pressure MALDI-FTMS, and further application of this experiment to other fragile biomolecules.

Primary teaching affiliate
of BU School of Medicine