Quantitation of relative or absolute amounts of proteins by mass spectrometry can be prone to large errors. The use of MS/MS ion intensities and stable isotope labeling, which we term stable isotope labeling tandem mass spectrometry (SILT), decreases the effects of contamination from unrelated compounds. We present a software package (SILTmass) that automates protein identification and quantification by the SILT method. SILTmass has the ability to analyze the kinetics of protein turnover, in addition to relative and absolute protein quantitation. Instead of extracting chromatograms to find elution peaks, SILTmass uses only scans in which a peptide is identified and that meet an ion intensity threshold. Using only scans with identified peptides, the accuracy and precision of SILT is shown to be superior to precursor ion intensities, particularly at high or low dilutions of the isotope labeled compounds or with low amounts of protein. Using example scans, we demonstrate likely reasons for the improvements in quantitation by SILT. The appropriate use of variable modifications in peptide identification is described for measurement of protein turnover kinetics. The combination of identification with SILT facilitates quantitation without peak detection and helps to ensure the appropriate use of variable modifications for kinetics experiments.
- Error analysis
- Quantitative mass spectrometry
ASJC Scopus subject areas