ClipsMS: An Algorithm for Analyzing Internal Fragments Resulting from Top-Down Mass Spectrometry
Here we describe ClipsMS, an algorithm that can assign both terminal and internal fragments generated by top-down MS fragmentation. Further, ClipsMS can be used to locate various modifications on the protein sequence. Using ClipsMS to assign TD-MS generated product ions, we demonstrate that for apo-myoglobin, the inclusion of internal fragments increases the sequence coverage up to 78%. Interestingly, many internal fragments cover complimentary regions to the terminal fragments that enhance the information that is extracted from a single top-down mass spectrum. Analysis of oxidized apo-myoglobin using terminal and internal fragment matching by ClipsMS confirmed the locations of oxidation sites on the two methionine residues. Internal fragments can be beneficial for top-down protein fragmentation analysis, and ClipsMS can be a valuable tool for assigning both terminal and internal fragments present in a top-down mass spectrum.