EThcD and 213 nm UVPD for Top-Down Analysis of Bovine Seminal Plasma Proteoforms on Electrophoretic and Chromatographic Time Frames

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Analytical Chemistry


Seminal plasma is a critical and complex fluid that carries sperm to eggs to initiate the fertilization process. Here, we present a top-down mass spectrometry (TDMS) strategy for identifying proteins and posttranslational modifications (PTMs) in bovine seminal plasma. In this study, proteins were separated using sheathless capillary zone electrophoresis (CZE)-MS and reversed-phase liquid chromatography (LC)-MS, and then fragmented using electron-transfer/higher-energy collisional dissociation (EThcD) and 213 nm ultraviolet photodissociation (213 nm UVPD) to provide more comprehensive information about the proteomic landscape of this biological fluid. Four hundred and seventeen proteoforms were identified by sheathless CZE-MS, and one hundred and seventy-two species were unique to this method. LC-MS identified 3090 proteoforms, including 1707 unique species. All identifications were within ±10 ppm (mass error) and with a P-Score ≤1 × 10-04. Pooling results (triplicate measurements) from sheathless CZE-MS and LC-MS resulted in the identification of 1433 proteoforms (EThcD) and 2151 proteoforms (213 nm UVPD) with 612 species unique for EThcD and 1021 for 213 nm UVPD. The average sequence coverage was found to be higher for EThcD (28%) than for 213 nm UVPD (23%). The use of sheathless CZE-MS and LC-MS with EThcD and 213 nm UVPD provided complementary protein profiling and proteoform data that were more comprehensive than those of either method alone.

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