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Chimera spectrum diagnostics for peptides using two-dimensional partial covariance mass spectrometry

Authors
  • Driver, T
  • Bachhawat, N
  • Frasinski, L
  • Marangos, J
  • Averbukh, V
  • Edelson-Averbukh, M
Publication Date
Jun 02, 2021
Source
Spiral - Imperial College Digital Repository
Keywords
License
Green
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Abstract

The rate of successful identification of peptide sequences by tandem mass spectrometry (MS/MS) is adversely affected by the common occurrence of co-isolation and co-fragmentation of two or more isobaric or isomeric parent ions. This results in so-called `chimera spectra’, which feature peaks of the fragment ions from more than a single precursor ion. The totality of the fragment ion peaks in chimera spectra cannot be assigned to a single peptide sequence, which contradicts a fundamental assumption of the standard automated MS/MS spectra analysis tools, such as protein database search engines. This calls for a diagnostic method able to identify chimera spectra to single out the cases where this assumption is not valid. Here, we demonstrate that, within the recently developed two-dimensional partial covariance mass spectrometry (2D-PC-MS), it is possible to reliably identify chimera spectra directly from the two-dimensional fragment ion spectrum, irrespective of whether the co-isolated peptide ions are isobaric up to a finite mass accuracy or isomeric. We introduce ‘3-57 chimera tag’ technique for chimera spectrum diagnostics based on 2D-PC-MS and perform numerical simulations to examine its efficiency. We experimentally demonstrate the detection of a mixture of two isomeric parent ions, even under conditions when one isomeric peptide is at one five-hundredth of the molar concentration of the second isomer.

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