Quantification of Amino Acids and Peptides

Quantification of Amino Acids and Peptides in an Ionic Liquid Based Aqueous Two-Phase System by LC-MS Analysis.


 2018 Apr 25;8(1):66. doi: 10.1186/s13568-018-0596-1.


Aqueous two-phase systems (ATPS) occur by the mixture of two polymers or a polymer and an inorganic salt in water. It was shown that not only polymers but also ionic liquids in combination with inorganic cosmotrophic salts are able to build ATPS. Suitable for the formation of ionic liquid-based ATPS systems are hydrophilic water miscible ionic liquids. To understand the driving force for amino acid and peptide distribution in IL-ATPS at different pH values, the ionic liquid Ammoeng 110™ and K2HPO4 have been chosen as a test system. To quantify the concentration of amino acids and peptides in the different phases, liquid chromatography and mass spectrometry (LC-MS) technologies were used. Therefore the peptides and amino acids have been processed with EZ:faast™-Kit from Phenomenex for an easy and reliable quantification method even in complex sample matrices. Partitioning is a surface-dependent phenomenon, investigations were focused on surface-related amino acid respectively peptide properties such as charge and hydrophobicity. Only a very low dependence between the amino acids or peptides hydrophobicity and the partition coefficient was found. Nevertheless, the presented results show that electrostatic respectively ionic interactions between the ionic liquid and the amino acids or peptides have a strong impact on their partitioning behavior.


  • S Oppermann
  • et al.