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Anal Chem. 2000 Nov 1;72(21):5158-61.

Corona discharge in charge reduction electrospray mass spectrometry.

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  • 1Department of Chemistry, University of Wisconsin-Madison 53706, USA.


Corona discharge is applied to charge reduction electrospray mass spectrometry for the analysis of complex mixtures of biological molecules. Recent work has described a method of charge reduction (reducing the charge states of analyte ions generated by the electrospray process) employing the radioactive isotope 210Po to produce neutralizing species. A variation to this approach is presented, in which charge neutralization is mediated by ions produced in a corona discharge. Varying the corona discharge voltage controls the current and the degree of charge reduction, providing predominantly singly charged ions that are detected by a commercial electrospray time-of-flight mass spectrometer. This technique provides charge reduction for the simplification of ESI spectra, without need for any radioactive material.

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