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Wednesday 01 December 1999

Chip-based capillary electrophoresis with an electrodeless nanospray interface.

By: Vrouwe EX, Gysler J, Tjaden UR, van der Greef J.

Rapid Commun Mass Spectrom 2000;14(18):1682-8

A sheathless and electrodeless nanospray interface has been used to interface a polycarbonate capillary electrophoresis (CE) chip to a mass spectrometer (MS). The chip was made of two flat polycarbonate plates which were bolted together. Channels were imprinted in one of the plates with metal wires, using a hydraulic press. A short tapered capillary connected to the chip was used as the nanospray emitter. The advantage of this electrodeless interface is that it was not necessary to apply a electrospray voltage to the chip or the nanospray emitter. Instead, the CE voltage already applied to the buffer compartment on the chip, to drive the electrophoresis, was used to generate the spray also. A low conductivity buffer of 1.25 mmol/L ammonium acetate in 80% methanol was used to obtain a large electric field across the buffer channel. The performance of the device was evaluated by analyzing a mixture of three beta-agonists Relative standard deviation (RSD) values obtained were between 4.8 and 5.0%. A sample concentration of 40 nmol/L resulted in a signal-to-noise ratio of 2 to 5 for the different components. Compared to a conventional CE analysis in a fused silica capillary with UV detection, only a minor loss of resolution was observed, which can be attributed to the design of the chip. Copyright 2000 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

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