Quantitative electrospray ionization efficiency scale: 10 years after
Merit Oss, Sofja Tshepelevitsh, Anneli Kruve, Piia Liigand, Jaanus Liigand, Riin Rebane, Sigrid Selberg, Kristel Ets, Koit Herodes, Ivo Leito
Rapid Commun Mass Spectrum 2021
The first comprehensive quantitative scale of the efficiency of electrospray ionization (ESI) in the positive mode by monoprotonation, containing 62 compounds, was published in 2010. Several trends were found between the compound structure and ionization efficiency (IE) but, possibly because of the limited diversity of the compounds, some questions remained. This work undertakes to align the new data with the originally published IE scale and carry out statistical analysis of the resulting more extensive and diverse data set to derive more grounded relationships and offer a possibility of predicting logIE values.
Recently, several new IE studies with numerous compounds have been conducted. In several of them, more detailed investigations of the influence of compound structure, solvent properties, or instrument settings have been conducted. IE data from these studies and results from this work were combined, and the multilinear regression method was applied to relate IE to various compound parameters.
The most comprehensive IE scale available, containing 334 compounds of highly diverse chemical nature and spanning 6 orders of magnitude of IE, has been compiled. Several useful trends were revealed.
The ESI ionization efficiency of a compound by protonation is mainly affected by three factors: basicity (expressed by pKaH in water), molecular size (expressed by molar volume or surface area), and hydrophobicity of the ion (expressed by charge delocalization in the ion or its partition coefficient between a water–acetonitrile mixture and hexane). The presented models can be used for tentative prediction of logIE of new compounds (under the used conditions) from parameters that can be computed using commercially available software. The root mean square error of prediction is in the range of 0.7–0.8 log units.
Risk-based prioritization of suspects detected in riverine water using complementary chromatographic techniques
Frederic Been, Anneli Kruve, Dennis Vughs, Nienke Meekel, Astrid Reus, Anne Zwartsen, Arnoud Wessel, Astrid Fischer, Thomas ter Laak, Andrea M. Brunner
Water Research 2021
Surface waters are widely used as drinking water sources and hence their quality needs to be continuously monitored. However, current routine monitoring programs are not comprehensive as they generally cover only a limited number of known pollutants and emerging contaminants. This study presents a risk-based approach combining suspect and non-target screening (NTS) to help extend the coverage of current monitoring schemes. In particular, the coverage of NTS was widened by combining three complementary separations modes: Reverse phase (RP), Hydrophilic interaction liquid chromatography (HILIC) and Mixed-mode chromatography (MMC). Suspect lists used were compiled from databases of relevant substances of very high concern (e.g., SVHCs) and the concentration of detected suspects was evaluated based on ionization efficiency prediction. Results show that suspect candidates can be prioritized based on their potential risk (i.e., hazard and exposure) by combining ionization efficiency-based concentration estimation, in vitro toxicity data or, if not available, structural alerts and QSAR.based toxicity predictions. The acquired information shows that NTS analyses have the potential to complement target analyses, allowing to update and adapt current monitoring programs, ultimately leading to improved monitoring of drinking water sources.
Guide to Semi-Quantitative Non-Targeted Screening Using LC/ESI/HRMS
Louise Malm, Emma Palm, Amina Souihi, Merle Plassmann, Jaanus Liigand, Anneli Kruve
Molecules 2021, 26(12), 3524
Non-targeted screening (NTS) with reversed phase liquid chromatography electrospray ionization high resolution mass spectrometry (LC/ESI/HRMS) is increasingly employed as an alternative to targeted analysis; however, it is not possible to quantify all compounds found in a sample with analytical standards. As an alternative, semi-quantification strategies are, or at least should be, used to estimate the concentrations of the unknown compounds before final decision making. All steps in the analytical chain, from sample preparation to ionization conditions and data processing can influence the signals obtained, and thus the estimated concentrations. Therefore, each step needs to be considered carefully. Generally, less is more when it comes to choosing sample preparation as well as chromatographic and ionization conditions in NTS. By combining the positive and negative ionization mode, the performance of NTS can be improved, since different compounds ionize better in one or the other mode. Furthermore, NTS gives opportunities for retrospective analysis. In this tutorial, strategies for semi-quantification are described, sources potentially decreasing the signals are identified and possibilities to improve NTS are discussed. Additionally, examples of retrospective analysis are presented. Finally, we present a checklist for carrying out semi-quantitative NTS.
Presentations from conferences can be found here.
30 Years of research on ESI/MS response: Trends, contradictions and applications
Piia Liigand, Jaanus Liigand, Karl Kaupmees and Anneli Kruve
Analytica Chimica Acta 2021, 1152, 238117
The variation of ionization efficiency for different compounds has puzzled researchers since the invention of the electrospray mass spectrometry (ESI/MS). Ionization depends on the properties of the compound, eluent, matrix, and instrument. Despite significant research, some aspects have remained unclear. For example, research groups have reached contradicting conclusions regarding the ionization processes. One of the best-known is the significance of the logP value for predicting the ionization efficiency. In this tutorial review, we analyse the methodology used for ionization efficiency measurements as well as the most important trends observed in the data. Additionally, we give suggestions regarding the measurement methodology and modelling strategies to yield meaningful and consistent ionization efficiency data. Finally, we have collected a wide range of ionization efficiency values from the literature and evaluated the consistency of these data. We also make this collection available for everyone for downloading as well as for uploading additional and new ionization efficiency data. We hope this GitHub based ionization efficiency repository will allow a joined community effort to collect and unify the current knowledge about the ionization processes.
Benchmarking of the quantification approaches for the non-targeted screening of micropollutants and their transformation products in groundwater
Anneli Kruve, Karin Kiefer, Juliane Hollender
Analytical and Bioanalytical Chemistry 2021, 413(6), 1549-1559
A wide range of micropollutants can be monitored with non-targeted screening; however, the quantification of the newly discovered compounds is challenging. Transformation products (TPs) are especially problematic because analytical standards are rarely available. Here, we compared three quantification approaches for non-target compounds that do not require the availability of analytical standards. The comparison is based on a unique set of concentration data for 341 compounds, mainly pesticides, pharmaceuticals, and their TPs in 31 groundwater samples from Switzerland. The best accuracy was observed with the predicted ionization efficiency-based quantification, the mean error of concentration prediction for the groundwater samples was a factor of 1.8, and all of the 74 micropollutants detected in the groundwater were quantified with an error less than a factor of 10. The quantification of TPs with the parent compounds had significantly lower accuracy (mean error of a factor of 3.8) and could only be applied to a fraction of the detected compounds, while the mean performance (mean error of a factor of 3.2) of the closest eluting standard approach was similar to the parent compound approach.