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Anal Chem. 2000 Aug 1;72(15):3436-42.

Prestructured MALDI-MS sample supports.

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Bruker Daltonik GmbH, Bremen, Germany.


Prestructured MALDI-MS sample supports have been developed that simplify high-throughput analysis of biomolecules and improve the detection sensitivity. The mass spectrometric sample support is coated with a thin layer of hydrophobic Teflon that carries an array of 200-microm gold spots, which provide hydrophilic sample anchors. Each transferred sample droplet contacts one anchor, on top of which, after solvent evaporation, the sample is exclusively deposited due to the strongly water repellent nature of the Teflon surface. The initial matrix concentration is kept low, enabling sample up-concentration by more than 2 orders of magnitudes before crystallization commences. As a result, the detection sensitivity is improved as documented by mass spectra recorded from 100 amol of various peptides, 1 fmol of a DNA 20 mer, and 5 fmol of a 130 bp PCR product. Size and spacing of the hydrophilic anchors are optimized for MALDI-MS performance (sample spot size approximately = laser irradiation spot size), for short analysis times (predetermined sample coordinates), and for high throughput sample preparation (sample anchor array according to the 1536 microtiter plate format).

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