Ligand-metal ion binding to proteins: investigation by ESI mass spectrometry.

Research paper by Noelle N Potier, Hélène H Rogniaux, Guillaume G Chevreux, Alain A Van Dorsselaer

Indexed on: 13 Jan '06Published on: 13 Jan '06Published in: Methods in enzymology


The objective of this chapter is to show the general mass spectrometry (MS)-based strategies that can be used to retrieve information regarding protein-metal and protein-ligand noncovalent complexes. Indeed, when using carefully controlled conditions in the atmospheric pressure-vacuum interface of the mass spectrometer, and when sample preparation is optimized, it is possible to preserve large specific multiprotein-metal-ligand noncovalent complexes during MS analysis. Examples describing the possibilities of electrospray ionization MS (ESI-MS) are shown. For instance, it can be used to probe cooperativity in the binding of a ligand or a metal to a protein or may constitute a new methodology for a more rational approach for drug discovery and for human genome annotation. Thanks to its ability to directly give information on stoichiometry or dynamics of the interactions formed in solution, MS offers new possibilities to tackle more and more various applications.