July 01, 2007
Here we describe a new compact device for electron-capture dissociation (ECD) analysis of large peptides and posttranslational modifications of proteins, which can be difficult to analyze via conventional dissociation techniques such as collision-induced dissociation (CID). The new compact device realizes ECD in a radio frequency (RF) linear ion trap equipped with a small permanent magnet, which is significantly different than the large and maintenance-intensive superconducting magnet required for conventional ECD in Fourier-transform ion cyclotron resonance mass spectrometers. In addition to its compactness and ease of operation, an additional merit of an RF linear ion trap ECD is that its reaction speed is fast, comparable to CID, enabling data acquisition on the liquid-chromatography (LC) time scale. We interfaced the linear-trap ECD device to a time-of-flight mass spectrometer to obtain ECD spectra of phosphorylated peptides injected into a liquid chromatograph, infused glycopeptides, and intact small..