Fast Atom Bombardment Mass Spectrometry: Application to Peptide Structural Analysis
Study of structure-function relationships for biological molecules is a central theme of contemporary biomedical research. Once isolated and purified, these molecules require structural characterization before they can be used effectively to study their function in the living organism. One important subset, polypeptides, are often only available in picomole quantities. To structurally analyze these small quantities has been one goal of protein chemistry. Several methods have been developed to determine the amino acid composition, amino, acid sequence, and covalent chemical structure of polypeptides. Amino acid analysis requires only picomoles of polypeptide 1. The amino acid sequence for a polypeptide can be determined from picomole amounts by automated sequential Edman degradation followed by high performance liquid chromatographic identification of the resulting phenylthiohydantoin amino acids 2. The molecular weight and other covalent structures can be inferred from the mass spectrum of picomoles of the polypeptide. Integration of these technologies is useful in providing structural information about these small quantities.
KeywordsHigh Performance Liquid Chromatography Selenium Adduct Lysine Polypeptide
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