LESA Cyclic Ion Mobility Mass Spectrometry of Intact Proteins from Thin Tissue Sections



Liquid extraction surface analysis (LESA) is an ambient surface sampling technique that allows the analysis of intact proteins directly from tissue samples via mass spectrometry. Integration of ion mobility separation to LESA mass spectrometry workflows has shown significant improvements in the signal-to-noise ratios of the resulting protein mass spectra and hence the number of proteins detected. Here, we report the use of a quadrupole–cyclic ion mobility–time-of-flight mass spectrometer (Q-cIM-ToF) for the analysis of proteins from mouse brain and rat kidney tissues sampled via LESA. Among other features, the instrument allows multiple pass cyclic ion mobility separation, with concomitant increase in resolving power. Single-pass experiments enabled the detection of 30 proteins from mouse brain tissue, rising to 44 when quadrupole isolation was employed. In the absence of ion mobility separation, 21 proteins were detected in rat kidney tissue including the abundant α- and β-globin chains from hemoglobin. Single-pass cyclic ion mobility mass spectrometry enabled the detection of 60 additional proteins. Multipass experiments of a narrow m/z range (m/z 870–920) resulted in the detection of 24 proteins (one pass), 37 proteins (two passes) and 54 proteins (three passes), thus demonstrating the benefits of improved mobility resolving power.

Helen J. Cooper, Emma K. Sisley, Jakub Ujma, Martin Palmer, Kevin Giles, Francisco A. Fernandez-Lima