The purpose of this article is to underline the possibility of efficiently using electron ionization (EI) in liquid chromatography (LC) and mass spectrometry (MS). From a historical perspective, EI accompanied the first attempts in LC-MS but, owing to several technical shortcomings, it was soon outshined by soft, atmospheric pressure ionization (API) techniques. Nowadays, two modern approaches, supersonic molecular beam LC-MS and direct-EI LC-MS, offer a valid alterative to API, and preserve the advantages of EI also in LC-MS applications. These advantages can be summarized in three crucial aspects: automated library identification; identification of unknown compounds, owing to EI extensive fragment information; inertness to coeluted matrix interferences owing to very unlikely ion–ion and ion–molecule interactions in the EI gas-phase environment. The direct-EI LCMS interface is a simple and efficient solution able to produce high-quality, interpretable EI spectra from a wide range of low molecular weight molecules of different polarity. Because of the low operative flow rates, this interface relies on a nano-LC technology that helps in reducing the impact of the mobile phase on the gas-phase environment of EI. This review provides an extensive discussion on the role of EI in LC-MS interfacing, and presents in detail several performance aspects of the direct- EI LC-MS interface, especially in terms of response, massspectral quality, and matrix effects. In addition, several key applications are also reported.

Electron Ionization in LC-MS: Recent Developments and Applications of the Direct-EI LC-MS Interface.

PALMA, PIERANGELA;FAMIGLINI, GIORGIO;TRUFELLI, HELGA;PIERINI, ELISABETTA;TERMOPOLI, VERONICA;CAPPIELLO, ACHILLE
2011-01-01

Abstract

The purpose of this article is to underline the possibility of efficiently using electron ionization (EI) in liquid chromatography (LC) and mass spectrometry (MS). From a historical perspective, EI accompanied the first attempts in LC-MS but, owing to several technical shortcomings, it was soon outshined by soft, atmospheric pressure ionization (API) techniques. Nowadays, two modern approaches, supersonic molecular beam LC-MS and direct-EI LC-MS, offer a valid alterative to API, and preserve the advantages of EI also in LC-MS applications. These advantages can be summarized in three crucial aspects: automated library identification; identification of unknown compounds, owing to EI extensive fragment information; inertness to coeluted matrix interferences owing to very unlikely ion–ion and ion–molecule interactions in the EI gas-phase environment. The direct-EI LCMS interface is a simple and efficient solution able to produce high-quality, interpretable EI spectra from a wide range of low molecular weight molecules of different polarity. Because of the low operative flow rates, this interface relies on a nano-LC technology that helps in reducing the impact of the mobile phase on the gas-phase environment of EI. This review provides an extensive discussion on the role of EI in LC-MS interfacing, and presents in detail several performance aspects of the direct- EI LC-MS interface, especially in terms of response, massspectral quality, and matrix effects. In addition, several key applications are also reported.
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/11576/2504129
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