Noncovalent complexes involving a single-stranded DNA oligonucleotide and a polybasic compound (spermine, penta-L-lysine, penta-L-arginine, or polydisperse poly-L-lysine) were detected by nanospray-MS. Several control experiments tended to show that these complexes preexisted in solution and that the interactions were initially ionic ones between oligonucleotide phosphates and protonated basic sites of the polybasic compound. Collision-induced dissociation (CID) experiments carried out with these complexes allowed us to identify some differences in the nature of the interactions between the solution and the gas phase, arising from possible proton transfers. Different dissociation pathways were observed according to the nature of the polybasic compound and to the initial charge state of the complex. The complex involving spermine dissociated by cleavage of noncovalent bonds leading to the separation of the two components, whereas the one involving penta-L-arginine underwent fragmentations of covalent bonds. Both behaviors were independent of the initial charge state of the complex. On the other hand, the dissociation pathway of the complex involving penta-L-lysine has been shown to be clearly charge state dependent. Noncovalent dissociation (separation of the two components) driven by coulomb repulsion occurred for the higher charged complexes, whereas fragmentation of covalent bonds was the main pathway of the lower charged complexes. In the latter case, differences in CID behavior were observed for different lengths of poly-L-lysine. © 2007 American Society for Mass Spectrometry.
Terrier, P., Tortajada, J., & Buchmann, W. (2007). A Study of Noncovalent Complexes Involving Single-Stranded DNA and Polybasic Compounds Using Nanospray Mass Spectrometry. Journal of the American Society for Mass Spectrometry, 18(2), 346–358. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jasms.2006.09.027