Development of a calibration and standardization procedure for LA-ICP-MS using a conventional ink-jet printer for quantification of proteins in electro- and Western-blot assays†
We developed new procedures for internal standardization and calibration to be used for laser ablation inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometry (LA-ICP-MS) for elemental micro mapping imaging of biological samples like Western blot membranes and tissue sections. These procedures are based on printing of metal spiked inks onto the top of thin layer samples for simultaneous internal standardization and calibration of LA-ICP-MS. In the case of internal standardization the ink is spiked with indium as an internal standard and homogenously printed over the entire membrane (size 56 cm2) prior to LA-ICP-MS detection, a standard deviation (RSD) value of 2% was achieved. In the second approach the metal content of lanthanide tagged proteins and antibodies after biological work flows was quantified by LA-ICP-MS on nitro-cellulose membranes. In this case the inks spiked with varying metals were printed with different densities on the same nitrocellulose membranes in well-defined squares to produce matrix-matched calibration standards. For validation and calibration the ink squares were excised and the specific metal content was measured by liquid ICP-MS after solubilization of the membrane slice. For the printed calibration standard limits of detection (LOD) of <4 fmol for different metals and relative process standard deviations of 1–2% only were determined via LA-ICP-MS.
- This article is part of the themed collection: 2014 Winter Conference on Plasma Spectrochemistry