Colors for Molecular Masses: Fusion of Spectroscopy and Mass Spectrometry for Identification of Biomolecules
We present an approach that integrates ultraviolet (UV) photofragmentation spectroscopy of cold ions with high-resolution Orbitrap mass spectrometry (MS) and uses mathematical analysis of the recorded 2D data arrays for structural identification of biomolecules. The synergy of the two orthogonal techniques makes these arrays unique fingerprints of molecular ions, enabling their reliable identifications. Using preliminary created libraries of fingerprints, the UV-MS approach was successfully applied for quantitative identification of exact isobaric molecules in their mixtures, which is one of the challenging cases for mass spectrometry. We also demonstrate how the UV and fragmentation mass spectra of unknown chemical components of a mixture can be recovered from its fingerprint even without a use of library.