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Rapid metabolite identification with sub parts-per-million mass accuracy from biological matrices by direct infusion nanoelectrospray ionization after clean-up on a ZipTip and LTQ/Orbitrap mass spectrometry

Reputable Mentor II
Reputable Mentor II
Erve JC, Demaio W, Talaat RE.
Rapid Commun Mass Spectrom. 2008 Oct;22(19):3015-26.
Metabolite identification studies remain an integral part of pre-clinical and clinical drug development programs. Analysis of biological matrices, such as plasma, urine, feces and bile, pose challenges due to the large amounts of endogenous components that can mask a drug and its metabolites. Although direct infusion nanoelectrospray using capillaries has been used routinely for proteomic studies, metabolite identification has traditionally employed liquid chromatographic (LC) separation prior to analysis. A method is described here for rapid metabolite profiling in biological fluids that involves initial sample clean-up using pipette tips packed with reversed-phase material (i.e. ZipTips) to remove matrix components followed by direct infusion nanoelectrospray on an LTQ/Orbitrap mass spectrometer using a protonated polydimethylcyclosiloxane cluster ion for internal calibration. We re-examined samples collected from a prazosin metabolism study in the rat. Results are presented that demonstrate that sub parts-per-million accuracies can be achieved on molecular ions, facilitating identification of metabolites, and on product ions, facilitating structural assignments. The data also show that the high-resolution measurements (R = 100,000 at m/z 400) enable metabolites of interest to be resolved from endogenous components. The extended analysis times available with nanospray enables signal averaging for 1 min or more that is valuable when metabolites are present in low concentrations as encountered here in plasma and brain. Using this approach, the metabolic fate of a drug can be quickly obtained. A limitation of this approach is that metabolites that are structural isomers cannot be distinguished, although such information can be collected by LC/MS during follow-on experiments.
Drug Safety and Metabolism, Wyeth Research, Collegeville, PA 19426, USA.
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