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J Am Soc Mass Spectrom. 2004 Jun;15(6):832-9.

Mass spectrometric detection of affinity purified crosslinked peptides.

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Chemical Sciences Division, Oak Ridge National Laboratory, Oak Ridge, Tennessee 37831-6131, USA.


Chemical crosslinking of proteins combined with mass spectrometric analysis of the tryptic digest of the products shows considerable promise as a tool for interrogating structure and geometry of proteins and protein complexes. An impediment to the use of this tool has been the difficulty of distinguishing crosslinked peptide pairs from non-crosslinked peptides, and from the products of side reactions. We describe the use of a commercially available biotinylated crosslinking reagent, sulfo-SBED, that allows affinity-based enrichment of crosslinked species. An intramolecular crosslink is prepared using the peptide neurotensin as a model system. Matrix-assisted laser desorption/ionization time-of-flight (MALDI-TOF) mass spectra show the predicted crosslinking product, as well as several side products. Finally, we describe the optimized enrichment of biotinylated species, and reduction of non-specific binding, for a batch-mode affinity separation based on immobilized monomeric avidin.

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