Microfluidic chips for mass spectrometry-based proteomics

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Microfluidic devices coupled to mass spectrometers have emerged as excellent tools for solving the complex analytical challenges associated with the field of proteomics. Current proteome identification procedures are accomplished through a series of steps that require many hours of labor-intensive work. Microfluidics can play an important role in proteomic sample preparation steps prior to mass spectral identification such as sample cleanup, digestion, and separations due to its ability to handle small sample quantities with the potential for high-throughput parallel analysis. To utilize microfluidic devices for proteomic analysis, an efficient interface between the microchip and the mass spectrometer is required. This tutorial provides an overview of the technologies and applications of microfluidic chips coupled to mass spectrometry for proteome analysis. Various approaches for combining microfluidic devices with electrospray ionization (ESI) and matrix-assisted laser desorption/ionization (MALDI) are summarized and applications of chip-based separations and digestion technologies to proteomic analysis are presented. Copyright © 2009 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

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Journal of Mass Spectrometry

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