Measurements of protein stability by H/D exchange and matrix-assisted laser desorption/ionization mass spectrometry using picomoles of material.
Recently, we reported on a new H/D exchange- and matrix-assisted laser desorption/ionization (MALDI)-based technique, termed SUPREX, that can be used to measure the thermodynamic stability of a protein (Ghaemmaghami, S.; Fitzgerald, M. C.; Oas, T. G. Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. U.S.A. 2000, 97, 8296-8301). In the work described here, we report on our efforts to optimize the sensitivity of SUPREX analyses. We describe a new sample handling protocol for SUPREX that involves the use of batch chromatography methods with reversed-phase chromatographic media for the microconcentration and desalting of SUPREX samples. Using ribonuclease A as a model protein system, we demonstrate that our new protocol permits the SUPREX analysis of as little as 10 pmol of protein. This amount of protein is 100-fold less than the amount of material required in our initial SUPREX protocol, and it is 1-2 orders of magnitude less than the amount of material required in conventional spectroscopy-based methods for measuring the thermodynamic stability of a protein.
Powell, KD; Fitzgerald, MC
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