A novel precursor ion discovery method on a hybrid quadrupole orthogonal acceleration time-of-flight (Q-TOF) mass spectrometer for studying protein phosphorylation
- Cite this article as:
- Bateman, R.H., Carruthers, R., Hoyes, J.B. et al. J Am Soc Mass Spectrom (2002) 13: 792. doi:10.1016/S1044-0305(02)00420-8
A tandem quadrupole time-of-flight (Q-TOF) mass spectrometer has been programmed such that phosphorylated peptides can automatically be discovered and identified in a way similar to that of the use of precursor ion or neutral loss scanning, but without the need to scan the quadrupole mass filter. Instead, the method capitalizes on the innate capability of the Q-TOF to record mass spectra and product ion spectra quickly, with good sensitivity and with good mass accuracy. Alternate mass spectra, with and without fragmentation, are recorded at high and low collision energy with the quadrupole operating in wideband mode. The method of analysis is both compatible with and dependant on liquid chromatography for separation of complex mixtures. The method has been demonstrated by searching for the neutral loss of 98 Da (H3PO4) from phosphoserine and phosphothreonine residues, or for the phosphorylated immonium ion at m/z 216 from phosphotyrosine. The method also incorporates acquisition of the product ion spectrum from any candidate precursor ions, thereby allowing confirmation of the neutral loss or product ion and providing additional sequence information to assist identification of the protein and assign the site of phosphorylation.