Date of Award

Spring 5-12-2017

Degree Type

Honors Thesis



First Advisor

Dr. Franco Basile


The research that I have performed since the Spring 2016 semester is based on a study done by Cotham et al. in 2015, where front-end sprayers are used to mix solutions before they enter a mass spectrometer. One of these solutions contains a peptide, which is positively charged, and the other solution contains the reagent 4-formyl-1,3-benzenedisulfonic acid (FBDSA), which is negatively charged. The charges lead to a reaction in microseconds, with spray droplets, before it enters the instrument. Once inside the mass spectrometer a technique called collision induced dissociation (CID) is implemented in order to completely combine the reactant molecules into a single compound called a Shiff base. We plan to attempt this technique on larger peptides, in order to obtain their amino acid sequence, which we prepare through our own microwave digestion techniques. If this technique works with these larger peptides, it will allow for the analysis of peptides at a much more efficient rate. This has applications in many different biological and biochemical fields. Our work could enhance the capabilities of mass spectrometry in daily protein analysis and identification.