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J Biomol Tech. 2005 Jun;16(2):83-90.

Multiple reaction monitoring as a method for identifying protein posttranslational modifications.

Author information

1
Product Application Laboratory, MDS Sciex, 71 Four Valley Drive, Concord, Ontario, Canada L4K 4V8. david.cox@sciex.com

Abstract

The activity of many transcriptional regulators is significantly altered by posttranslational modifications of specific sites. For example, the activity of the muscle-restricted transcription factor family myocyte enhancer factor 2 (MEF2) is tightly controlled by phosphorylation. This modification is responsible for either an increase or a decrease in transcriptional activity, depending on the specific amino acid residues that are phosphorylated by signal-dependent kinases. Although mass spectrometry-based methods, such as precursor ion and neutral loss scans, are extremely useful for identifying unknown phosphopeptides from a complex mixture, they do not take advantage of any prior knowledge about the protein being investigated. Quite often a significant amount of information is available. This may include the primary sequence, type of phosphorylation (serine/threonine vs. tyrosine), or predicted phosphoacceptor sites (consensus peptide that is targeted by a kinase). This information can be used to predict precursor and fragment ion m/z values for a multiple reaction monitoring (MRM) experiment. By using these highly sensitive MRM experiments to trigger dependent product ion scans on a hybrid quadrupole linear ion-trap instrument, we were able to identify low levels of phosphorylation of MEF2A (a member of the MEF2 family), and alpha-casein. This method of monitoring protein phosphorylation at specific phosphoacceptor sites may prove useful in understanding the physiological regulation of protein function.

PMID:
16030315
PMCID:
PMC2291721
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

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