The dissociation chemistry of the ortho-, meta- or para-isomers of protonated S-methyl methoxyl- (or chloro-) benzenylmethylenehydrazine dithiocarboxylate, RPhCHN-NHC(S)-SCH3(R=MeO- or Cl-), has been investigated by collision induced dissociation experiments and DFT theoretical calculations. The three methoxyl-substituted isomers were easily differentiated according to the different abundance of the characteristic ion at m/z 136, resulting from the varying reactivity of the (NSC)SCH3elimination. This fragmentation is triggered by the positive charge upon protonation on the imine N2. Relative to the meta isomer, the positive charge on N2 in the para isomer is dispersed due to the electron donating resonance of the methoxyl group, which leads to higher energy barrier in the dissociation reaction and the less abundant product ion (m/z 136) in the MS/MS. (NSC)SCH3elimination of the ortho- isomer is further suppressed due to both the resonance effect and the " ortho effect" (an intramolecular hydrogen bond), with much higher energy barrier and extremely lower abundance of the fragment ion (m/z 136, 0.4%). The chloro substituted isomers, however, are short of the above positional effects due to the weak electronic effect of the substituent, and share the similar tandem mass spectrum. © 2010 Elsevier B.V.
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