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Appl Environ Microbiol. 2003 Feb;69(2):1100-7.

Small, acid-soluble proteins as biomarkers in mass spectrometry analysis of Bacillus spores.

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Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry, University of Maryland, College Park, Maryland 20704, USA.

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  • Appl Environ Microbiol. 2005 Sep;71(9):5663.


The use of 1 N HCl for extraction of small, acid-soluble proteins (SASP) from different Bacillus spore species was examined. The extracts were analyzed by high-performance liquid chromatography and matrix-assisted laser desorption mass spectrometry and were found to be both qualitatively and quantitatively superior to extraction by acetonitrile-5% trifluoroacetic acid (70:30, vol/vol). Both major and minor alpha/beta- and gamma-type SASP were characterized by their molecular masses or tryptic peptide maps and by searches of both protein and unannotated genome databases. For all but 1 pair (B. cereus T and B. thuringiensis subsp. Kurstaki) among the 11 variants studied the suites of SASP masses are distinctive, consistent with the use of these proteins as potential biomarkers for spore identification by mass spectrometry.

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