Improving the resolution of neuropeptides in rat brain with on-line HILIC-RP compared to on-line SCX-RP



Our two already established on-line 2-D LC systems, a strong cation exchange-RP chromatography (SCX-RP) system and a hydrophilic interaction LC (HILIC)-RP 2-D LC system, were compared to explore which system is best suited for our further studies of differences in cerebral neuropeptide expression as a function of hypoxia-caused stress. The same mass spectrometer and database search parameters were applied in both systems. In total, 19 first dimension fractions were collected with the novel on-line HILIC-RP system, including a Hypercarb SPE column that was applied to trap the compounds not retained on a Kromasil C18 enrichment column. In contrast, six fractions were collected in the SCX-RP method, due to practical limitations of this traditional on-line 2-D LC system. With the on-line HILIC-RP system three times more peaks were detected. It was observed that most of the compounds eluted in the first two fractions in the SCX-RP method, while in the 2-D HILIC-RP method there seemed to be no correlation between peaks detected and fraction number. Thus, from this systematic study it seems that on-line HILIC-RP chromatography is the method of choice for comparative “peptidomics” of cerebral neuropeptides in future studies.