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Anal Chem. 2010 Nov 1;82(21):9090-9. doi: 10.1021/ac102387t. Epub 2010 Oct 8.

Molecular detection of targeted major histocompatibility complex I-bound peptides using a probabilistic measure and nanospray MS3 on a hybrid quadrupole-linear ion trap.

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Cancer Vaccine Center and Laboratory of Immunobiology, Department of Medical Oncology, Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, Harvard Medical School, Boston, Massachusetts, United States.


A nanospray MS(3) method deployed on a quadrupole linear ion trap hybrid can detect targeted peptides with high dynamic range and high sensitivity from complex mixtures without separations. The method uses a recognition algorithm that is a modification of the relative (Kullback-Leibler, KL) entropy characterization of probabilistic distance to detect if reference MS(3) fragmentation patterns are components of acquired MS(3) spectra. The recognition reflects the probabilistic structure of physical MS measurements unlike the Euclidean or inner product metrics widely used for comparing spectra. It capably handles spectra with a significant chemical ion background in contrast to the Euclidean metric or the direct relative entropy. The full nanospray MS(3) method allows both the detection and quantitation of targets without the need to obtain isotopically labeled standards. By avoiding chromatographic separations and its associated surface losses, the detection can be applied to complex samples on a very limited material scale. The methodology is illustrated by applications to the medically important problem of detecting targeted major histocompatibility complex (MHC) I associated peptides extracted from limited cell numbers.

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