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RP HPLC VYDAChandbook Powered By Docstoc
					                               Third Edition, 2002

                               T   his handbook presents the basic principles of reversed-phase HPLC for the
                                   analysis and purification of polypeptides. For further details regarding
                               reversed-phase HPLC separations of polypeptides please refer to the technical
                               references at the back of the Handbook or contact the Grace Vydac Technical
                               Support Group.

                               Table of Contents
                               Introduction . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .2
                               Mechanism of Interaction . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .4

          The Handbook of      The Role of the Column in Polypeptide Separations . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .8
                               Analytical Conditions: The Role of the Mobile Phase and Temperature . . . .17
                               Reversed-Phase HPLC/Mass Spectrometry . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .26
Analysis and Purification of   The Role of Reversed-Phase HPLC in Proteomic Analysis . . . . . . . . . . . . . .30
                               Examples of the Use of Reversed-Phase HPLC
  Peptides and Proteins by     in the Analysis of Polypeptides . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .32
                               HPLC as a Tool to Purify and Isolate Polypeptides . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .40
    Reversed-Phase HPLC        Viral Inactivation During Reversed-Phase HPLC Purification . . . . . . . . . . . .50

                               Appendix A: Column Characteristics . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .52
                               Appendix B: The Care and Maintenance of Reversed-Phase Columns . . . . .53
                               Appendix C: The Effect of Surfactants on Reversed-Phase Separations . . . .56
                               Appendix D: Ion Exchange Chromatography:
                               Orthogonal Analytical Techniques . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .58
                               Appendix E: The Effect of System Hardware
                               on Reversed-Phase HPLC Polypeptide Separations . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .60
                               Technical References . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .62

                               The Grace Vydac Technical Support Group is available for discussions
                               regarding your bio-separation questions.

                               Please contact us at:
                               Phone 1.800.247.0924 (USA) • 1.760.244.6107 (International)
                               Fax 1.760.244.1984 (USA) • 1.888.244.1984 (International)


     Introduction: Analysis and Purification of
Proteins and Peptides by Reversed-Phase HPLC
                                                                                             In the process they demonstrated the
R    eversed-Phase High Performance
     Liquid Chromatography
(RP-HPLC) has become a widely
                                         have been separated from each
                                         other3. In the latter paper, Kunitani
                                         and colleagues proposed that
                                                                                             resolving power of the technique for
                                                                                             similar polypeptides.
                                                                                                                                     Reversed-Phase HPLC is widely used
                                                                                                                                     in the biopharmaceutical field for
                                                                                                                                     analysis of protein therapeutic
used, well-established tool for the      RP-HPLC retention could provide                                                             products. Enzymatic digests of
analysis and purification of             information on the conformation                     RP-HPLC is used for the separation      protein therapeutics are analyzed for
biomolecules. The reason for the         of retained proteins on the                         of peptide fragments from enzymatic     protein identity and to detect genetic
central role that RP-HPLC now            reversed-phase surface. They studied                digests10-16 and for purification of    changes and protein degradation
plays in analyzing and purifying         thirty interleukin-2 muteins and                    natural and synthetic peptides17.       (deamidation and oxidation) products.
proteins and peptides is Resolution:     were able to separate muteins that                  Preparative RP-HPLC is frequently       Intact proteins are analyzed by
RP-HPLC is able to separate              were nearly identical. Interleukin in               used to purifiy synthetic peptides in   RP-HPLC to verify conformation and
polypeptides of nearly identical         which a methionine was oxidized                     milligram and gram quantities46-50.     to determine degradation products.
sequences, not only for small            was separated from the native form                  RP-HPLC is used to separate             As the biotechnology revolution has
peptides such as those obtained          and in other cases single amino                     hemoglobin variants34, 35, identify     expanded so have the technique's
through trypsin digestion, but even      acid substitutions were separated                   grain varieties32, study enzyme         applications. The number of patents
for much larger proteins. Polypeptides   from native forms. They concluded                   subunits21 and research cell            referencing VYDAC® reversed-phase
which differ by a single amino acid      that protein conformation was                       functions33. RP-HPLC is used to         columns alone has grown
residue can often be separated by        very important in reversed-phase                    purify micro-quantities of peptides     exponentially over the past few
RP-HPLC as illustrated in Figure 1       separations and that RP-HPLC could                  for sequencing45 and to purify          years as illustrated in Figure 2
showing the separation of insulin        be used to study protein conformation.              milligram to kilogram quantities of     (Also see Reference 74).
variants.1 Insulin variants have                                                             biotechnology-derived polypeptides
molecular weights of around 5,300                                                            for therapeutic use59-62.
with only slightly different amino
acid sequences, yet most variants        Separation of Closely Related                                                               Number of Patents Issued Using
can be separated by RP-HPLC.             Insulin Variants by RP-HPLC                                                                 Grace Vydac Reversed-Phase
In particular, reversed-phase                                                                                                        HPLC Columns
chromatography is able to separate                              Threonine
human and rabbit insulin which                                                Serine
                                                              bovine          human
only differ by a methylene group—
                                                              ovine                                                                                                                                     406
rabbit insulin has a threonine                    chicken

where human insulin has a serine!                                                   rat II                                                                                                        289
                                                                            rat I                                                                                                     172
The scientific literature has many                                                                                                                                   97

examples where RP-HPLC has been                                                                                                                         40 32
used to separate similar polypeptides.                                                                                                  15 13 19
Insulin-like growth factor with an
                                                                                                                                      84 85 86 87 88 89 90 91 92 93 94 95 96 97 98 99-00
oxidized methionine has been
separated from its non-oxidized          Figure 1. RP-HPLC separates rabbit and                                                      Figure 2. The number of patents issued by
analogue2 and interleukin-2 muteins      human insulin that differ by only a single                                                  the United States Patent Office in the years
                                         amino acid. Column: VYDAC® 214TP54                                                          1984–2000 in which VYDAC® Reversed-Phase
                                         Eluent: 27–30% acetonitrile (ACN) in 0.1%                                                   HPLC columns are referenced in the
                                         TFA over 25 minutes at 1.5 mL/minute.                                                       patented process.

2                                                                                                                                                                                                                   3
                     Mechanism of Interaction Between
                    Polypeptides and RP-HPLC Columns
                                                                                                                                                Molecule Retention Versus
U     nderstanding the mechanism
      by which polypeptides interact
with the reversed-phase surface is
                                                       Polypeptides may be thought of as
                                                       “sitting” on the stationary phase, with
                                                       most of the molecule exposed to the
                                                                                                         Important aspects of the
                                                                                                         adsorption/desorption mechanism
                                                                                                         of interactions between polypeptides
                                                                                                                                                Organic Modifier Concentration

important in understanding RP-HPLC                     mobile phase and only a part of the               and the hydrophobic phase.                              25
polypeptide separations. The separation                molecule—the “hydrophobic foot”—                                                                                                         Biphenyl
of small molecules involves continuous                 in contact with the RP surface.                   Because the number of organic                           20

partitioning of the molecules between                  RP-HPLC separates polypeptides                    modifier molecules required to

                                                                                                                                                k1 (retention)
the mobile phase and the hydrophobic                   based on subtle differences in                    desorb a polypeptide—called the ‘Z’
stationary phase. Polypeptides,                        the “hydrophobic foot” of the                     number by Geng and Regnier4—is                          10
however, are too large to partition                    polypeptide being separated.                      very precise, desorption takes place
into the hydrophobic phase; they                       Differences in the “hydrophobic                   within a very narrow window of                           5

adsorb to the hydrophobic surface                      foot” result from differences in                  organic modifier concentration.
after entering the column and remain                   amino acid sequences and differences              This results in complete retention                        0      10   20   30     40    50    60   70 80 90
adsorbed until the concentration of                    in conformation.                                  until the critical organic modifier                                             Acetonitrile (%)
organic modifier reaches the critical                                                                    concentration is reached and sudden
concentration necessary to cause                                                                         desorption of the polypeptide takes                          B
desorption (Figure 3). They then                                                                         place (Figure 4). The sensitivity of                    25
                                                                                                                                                                               Lysozyme         Biphenyl
desorb and interact only slightly                                                                        polypeptide desorption to precise
with the surface as they elute down                                                                      concentrations of organic modifier

                                                                                                                                                k1 (retention)
the column4.                                                                                             accounts for the selectivity of                         15
                                                                                                         RP-HPLC in the separation of
                                                                                                         polypeptides. The sudden desorption                     10

Adsorption/Desorption Model of                                                                           of polypeptides when the critical
Polypeptide/Reversed-Phase Interaction                                                                   organic concentration is reached
                                                                                                         produces sharp peaks. The                                0
                                                                                                         sensitivity of the ‘Z’ number to                          0      10   20   30     40    50    60   70 80 90
           Polypeptide enters the                                                                        protein conformation3 and the                                                   Acetonitrile (%)
           column in the mobile phase
                                                                                                         sudden desorption at the critical      Figure 4. A: The retention of small molecules
                                        Polypeptide adsorbs to                                                                                  such as biphenyl decreases gradually as the
                                        the reversed-phase surface                                       modifier concentration give RP-HPLC
                                                                                                                                                organic modifier concentration increases
                                                                                                         the ability to separate very closely   because they are retained by partitioning.
                                                                        Polypeptide desorbs from
                                                                        the RP surface when the          related polypeptides (see Page 2).     B: The retention of polypeptides such as
                                                                        organic modifier concentration                                          lysozyme changes suddenly and drastically
                                                                        reaches the critical value                                              as the organic modifier reaches the critical
                                                                                                                                                concentration needed to desorb the polypeptide,
                                                                                                                                                evidence of the adsorption/desorption model of
                                                                                                                                                polypeptide-reversed-phase surface interactions.

Figure 3. Polypeptide enters the column in the mobile phase. The hydrophobic “foot”
of the polypeptide adsorbs to the hydrophobic surface of the reversed-phase material
where it remains until the organic modifier concentration rises to the critical concentration
and desorbs the polypeptide.

4                                                                                                                                                                                                                  5
The “hydrophobic foot” of a               the organic modifier concentration             Shallow gradients can be used             Retention Behavior of Peptides
polypeptide, which is responsible         is illustrated in Figure 5. Large              very effectively to separate similar
for the separation, is very sensitive     changes occur in the retention time            polypeptides where isocratic
to molecular conformation. This           of lysozyme with relatively small              separation would be impractical.
sensitivity of RP-HPLC to protein         changes in the acetonitrile                                                                                          Lysozyme            Biphenyl
conformation results in the separation    concentration. The sensitivity of              Small peptides appear to                                   20
of polypeptides that differ not only in   polypeptide retention to subtle                chromatograph by a hybrid of

                                                                                                                                   k' (retention)
the hydrophobic foot but elsewhere        changes in the modifier concentration          partitioning and adsorption. They                          15

in the molecule as well. Kunitani         makes isocratic elution difficult              desorb more quickly with changes in
and Johnson3 found that, due to           because the organic modifier                   organic modifier concentration than
conformational differences, very          concentration must be maintained               small molecules which partition,                            5
similar interleukin-2 muteins could       very precisely. Gradient elution is            however they desorb more gradually
be separated, including those             usually preferred for RP-HPLC                  than proteins (Figure 6), suggesting                        0
                                                                                                                                                      0   10   20     30    40    50    60    70 80 90
differing in an oxidized methionine       polypeptide separations, even if the           a hybrid separation mechanism.
                                                                                                                                                                           Acetonitrile (%)
or in single amino acid substitutions.    gradient is very shallow—i.e., a               Attempts to correlate peptide retention
Geng and Regnier4 found that the ‘Z’      small change in organic modifier               with side chain hydrophobicity have       Figure 6. The retention behavior on RP-HPLC
                                                                                                                                   of many peptides is midway between that
number correlates with molecular          concentration per unit time.                   been partially successful, however        of proteins and of small molecules.
weight for denatured proteins,                                                           tertiary structure in many peptides       Pentaphenylalanine, a small peptide, desorbs
                                                                                                                                   more quickly than biphenyl, a small molecule,
however, proteins with intact tertiary                                                   limit interactions to only a portion of   but more gradually than lysozyme. Small
structure elute earlier than expected                                                    the molecule and cause discrepancies      peptides appear to chromatograph by a
                                                                                         in the predictions of most models.        mixed mechanism.
because only the “hydrophobic foot”       Effect of Acetonitrile
is involved in the interaction, while     Concentration on Elution                       It has been shown that the exact
the rest of the protein is in contact                                                    location of hydrophobic residues
with the mobile phase.                        42% ACN                                    in a helical peptide is important in
                                                                                         predicting peptide retention5.            myoglobin having column efficiencies
                                                    40% ACN
The adsorption/desorption step                                                                                                     only 5–10% of the efficiencies
takes place only once while the                                                          Because large polypeptides                obtained with small molecules such
polypeptide is on the column. After                                    39% ACN           diffuse slowly, RP-HPLC results           as biphenyl. Gradient elution of
desorption, very little interaction                                                      in broader peaks than obtained            polypeptides, even with shallow
takes place between the polypeptide                                                      with small molecules. Peak widths         gradients, is preferred, since it results
and the reversed-phase surface and                                                       of polypeptides eluted isocratically      in much sharper peaks than isocratic
                                          0               Time (min)               20    are a function of molecular weight,       elution. Isocratic elution is rarely
subsequent interactions have little
affect on the separation.                                                                with large proteins such as               used for polypeptide separations.
                                          Figure 5. At 39% ACN, the retention time of
                                          lysozyme is nearly 18 minutes. Increasing
A practical consequence of this           the ACN concentration to 40% reduces the
                                          retention time by more than half, to 7.6
mechanism of interaction is that          minutes. Increasing the ACN concentration to
polypeptides are very sensitive to        42% reduces the retention time of lysozyme
                                          again by more than half, to 3.1 mintues.
organic modifier concentration. The       Column: VYDAC® 214TP54 Eluent: ACN at
sensitivity of polypeptide elution to     39, 40 and 42% in 0.1% aqueous TFA.

6                                                                                                                                                                                                    7
            The Role of the Column in Polypeptide
             Separations by Reversed-Phase HPLC
                                                                                                                                         Subtle differences in reversed-phase
T    he HPLC column provides the
     hydrophobic surface onto which
the polypeptides adsorb. Columns
                                          Adsorbent Particle Size
                                          The particle size of the adsorbents
                                                                                               Adsorbent Phase Type
                                                                                               Reversed-phase HPLC adsorbents
                                                                                                                                         surfaces sometimes result in
                                                                                                                                         differences in RP-HPLC selectivity
consist of stainless steel tubes filled   in the column affect the narrowness                  are formed by bonding a hydrophobic       for peptides that can be used to
with small diameter, spherical            of the eluting peaks. Smaller                        phase to the silica matrix by means       optimize specific peptide separations.
adsorbent particles, generally            diameter particles generally produce                 of chlorosilanes, silicon-based
composed of silica whose surface          sharper peaks and better resolution.                 molecules with chlorine as the            As illustrated in Figure 8, peptide
has been reacted with silane reagents                                                          reactive group and to which a             separation selectivity may be affected
to make them hydrophobic. Spherical       Five micrometer materials are                        hydrocarbon group is attached.            by the nature of the hydrophobic
particles of synthetic polymers, such     recommended for capillary analytical                                                           surface. Selectivity for the five peptides
as polystyrene-divinylbenzene can         and small scale preparative separations              The hydrocarbon group forming the         shown is about the same on the C18
also serve as HPLC adsorbents             (columns up to 10 mm i.d.). Larger                   hydrophobic phase is usually a linear     and C4 columns, although the C4
for polypeptides.                         diameter laboratory columns are                      aliphatic hydrocarbon of eighteen         column has slightly shorter retention.
                                          usually packed with 10 µm materials.                 (C18), eight (C8) or four (C4) carbons.   The phenyl column exhibits shorter
                                          Process chromatography columns of                    The length of the hydrocarbon chain       retention times and a different
Adsorbent Pore Diameter
                                          greater than 22 mm i.d. are normally                 often makes little difference in the      selectivity than the C18 column.
HPLC adsorbents are porous                packed with particles of 15 µm or                    effectiveness of protein separations.     Bradykinin, with two phenylalanines,
particles and the majority of the         greater and have wider particle size                 There are guidelines as to which          is retained somewhat longer, relative
interactive surface is inside the         distributions than the particles                     phase is likely to be most effective in   to the other peptides, on the phenyl
pores. Consequently, polypeptides         used in analytical columns                           separating polypeptides of a given        column than on the C18 column.
must enter a pore in order to be          (see Pages 40–42).                                   size and hydrophobicity. These are
adsorbed and separated.                                                                        summarized in Figure 7. C18 columns
                                          Column Selection and                                 are generally preferred for peptides      Peptide Separation on Different
For many years, HPLC was performed        Characteristics of Sample Molecule                   and small proteins less than about        Reversed-Phase Columns
with small molecules on particles                                                              5,000 daltons. The smallest and most
                                                                                                                                          C18 (VYDAC® 218TP54)
having pores of about 100 Å diameter.                   Decreasing Hydrophobicity Increasing   hydrophilic peptides are often best
Polypeptides chromatographed poorly,          MW                                               separated on small pore C18 columns.
                                              100     Small Pore C18
in part because many polypeptides                                                              Proteins larger than 5,000 daltons
                                                        Large Pore C18                         or small polypeptides that are             Phenyl (VYDAC® 219TP54)
are too large to enter pores of this         1,000
diameter. The development by Grace                             Large Pore C8                   particularly hydrophobic are best
                                            10,000                                             chromatographed on C4 columns.
Vydac of large pore (~300 Å) spherical
silica particles for HPLC heralded                                                             C8 columns are similar to C18
                                                                       Large Pore C4                                                      C4 (VYDAC® 214TP54)
the beginning of effective separations                                                         columns in their application but
of polypeptides by RP-HPLC. Today                                                              sometimes offer a different
most polypeptide separations are            100,000                                            selectivity or ability to separate
performed on columns with particles                                                            particular peptides. Phenyl columns       Figure 8. Peptide separation on different
                                                                                                                                         reversed-phase columns Columns: VYDAC®
with pores of about 300 Å, although       Figure 7. This chart indicates the pore
                                                                                               are slightly less hydrophobic than        218TP54 (C18); 214TP54 (C4); 219TP54
some peptides (<~2,000 MW) may            size and bonding recommended for various             C4 columns and may offer unique           (phenyl); Eluent: 15–30 % ACN in 0.1%
                                          molecular weights and hydrophobicities.              selectivity for some polypeptides.        aqueous TFA over 30 minutes at 1.0 mL/min.
also be separated on particles of                                                                                                        Sample: 1. oxytocin, 2. bradykinin, 3.
100 Å pores.                                                                                                                             angiotensin II, 4. neurotensin, 5. angiotensin I.

8                                                                                                                                                                                        9
Angiotensin I—with one histidine—                  peptide separations are very sensitive    somewhat different peptide fragment                                        These form what are called
and angiotensin II—with two                        to the density and uniformity of the      elution pattern than the more commonly                                     monomerically bonded phases,
histidines—both elute earlier relative             hydrophobic phase bonded to the           used C18 column. Testing different                                         having a single point of attachment
to the other peptides on the phenyl                silica matrix (Figure 9).                 columns is the only practical way of                                       to the silica matrix. Chlorosilanes
column. When developing peptide                                                              determining which column will give                                         with multiple reactive chlorines can
separations, such as those resulting               The different reversed-phase              the best resolution. Selectivity                                           also be used. These form what are
from protein digestion, it is best to              adsorbents may offer different            differences between reversed-phase                                         called polymerically bonded phases,
try several different hydrophobic                  selectivity when separating the           columns are used in some laboratories                                      where individual chlorosilanes
phases to determine which has the                  peptide fragments from enzymatic          to perform two-dimensional                                                 crosslink and form a silicone
best selectivity for that particular               digestion of a protein. Separation        peptide separations11.                                                     polymer on top of the silica matrix
mixture of peptides. RP-HPLC                       of tryptic digest fragments of                                                                                       with multiple hydrophobic chains
separation of peptides result from                 β-lactoglobulin A on two RP-HPLC          What is polymeric bonding and how                                          attached. Although similar in
subtle interactions of peptides with               columns illustrates the subtle effects    does it affect peptide selectivity?                                        hydrophobicity and separation
the reversed-phase surface. Small                  that different phases sometimes have      Reversed-phase HPLC adsorbents                                             characteristics, monomerically
variations in the reversed-phase                   on reversed-phase separations of          are usually prepared by bonding                                            bonded and polymerically bonded
surface can affect peptide separations             peptides (Figure 10). The C4 column       hydrocarbon chlorosilanes with one                                         phases can exhibit different
in small, but important ways. Some                 has slightly less retention and a         reactive chlorine to the silica matrix.                                    selectivities when separating peptides,
                                                                                                                                                                        particularly those resulting from
                                                                                                                                                                        enzymatic digests of proteins.
Resolution Improvement with                        Separation of a Tryptic Digest on         The Separation of Synthetic                                                The different selectivities afford
Low Carbon Load Column                             Different Reversed-Phase Columns          Peptides on Monomerically Bonded                                           chromatographers additional options
                                                                                             and Polymerically Bonded C18                                               for optimizing selectivity and
                                                                                             Reversed-Phase Columns                                                     resolution of protein digests and
                                                     C18 (VYDAC 218TP54)
                                                                                                                                                                        other peptides. An example is given in
     A                                                                                             Polymerically bonded
                                                                                                                                           13,14                        Figure 11 where a series of synthetic
                                                                                                                                                                        peptides are separated on a
                                                                                                                                                                        monomerically bonded adsorbent
                                                                                                      1        24                                   15

                                                     C4 (VYDAC 214TP54)                                          3 6     7                                              and a polymerically bonded

                                                                                                                                                                        adsorbent. Distinct differences in
                                                                                                                                                                        separation selectivity of the peptides
                                                                                                   Monomerically bonded
                                                                                                                                                14                      is noted, offering yet another option
                                                                                                                                           12                           in column selection when developing
Figure 9. Low carbon load C18 RP-HPLC              Figure 10. Columns: VYDAC® 218TP54                          4,5
                                                                                                                                                                        peptide separations.
                                                                                                                         7                11
column (B) separated two peptides that were        (C18); 214TP54 (C4); Eluent: 0–30 % ACN            1    2                                   13
                                                                                                               3     6
only partially resolved on a standard carbon       in 0.1% aqueous TFA over 60 minutes at
load column (A). Columns: A. VYDAC®                1.0 mL/min. Sample: tryptic digest of
218TP52-standard C18, 5 µm, 2.1 x 250 mm           β-lactoglobulin A.
                                                                                               0           10                         20                           30
B. VYDAC® 218LTP52– low carbon load–C18,                                                                             Minutes
5 µm, 2.1 x 250 mm Eluent: 6 mM TFA/4 mM
HFBA, 11–95% ACN in 75 min at 0.25 mL/min                                                    Figure 11. Columns: VYDAC® 218TP54
Sample: Asp–N protein digest. Data courtesy                                                  polymeric and 238TP54 monomeric (C18, 5 µm,
of H. Catipon and T. Salati, Genetics Institute,                                             4.6 x 250 mm) Eluent: 10–40% ACN with
Andover, MA.                                                                                 0.1% TFA over 30 min. Flowrate: 1.0 mL/min.

10                                                                                                                                                                                                           11
Use of Synthetic                        An advantage of separation materials              Column Dimensions: Length                Column back-pressure
Polymer Adsorbents                      made from synthetic polymers is that              The adsorption/desorption of proteins    Column back-pressure is directly
                                        they are not degraded at extremes of              responsible for their separation takes   proportional to the column length.
Although silica-based HPLC              pH. This allows the use of very                                                            When using more viscous solvents,
columns perform well under                                                                place almost entirely near the top of
                                        acidic or basic solutions as cleaning             the column. Therefore, column            such as isopropanol, shorter
mild conditions of acidic pH            reagents to remove proteins or other                                                       columns will result in more
and ambient temperatures,                                                                 length does not significantly affect
                                        materials from columns after                      separation and resolution of proteins.   moderate back-pressures.
extreme conditions (high pH, high       chromatography as illustrated in
temperature) will degrade silica                                                          Consequently, short columns of 5–15
                                        Figure 13. In this example, a column              cm length are often used for protein
columns. Synthetic polymers such        based on a polystyrene-divinylbenzene
as polystyrene-divinylbenzene                                                             separations. Small peptides, such as
                                        polymer was washed with strong                    those from protease digests, are
provide a very robust matrix for        base (1 N sodium hydroxide) and                                                            Peptide Separation Before and After
polypeptide separations.                                                                  better separated on longer columns       Extreme pH Washes
                                        with strong acid (1 N sulfuric acid).             and columns of 15–25 cm length
                                        Peptides chromatographed before                   are often used for the separation of
Silica-based columns perform very       washing, after washing with strong
well under moderate operating                                                             synthetic and natural peptides and          A. Initial Separation
                                        base and after washing with strong                enzymatic digest maps. For instance,
conditions of pH and temperature,       acid had similar peak shape,
but there is sometimes a need to                                                          Stone and Williams found that
                                        retention and resolution confirming               more peptide fragments from a
operate at higher than normal pH        that washing the column with strong
or temperature or in the presence                                                         tryptic digest of carboxymethylated
                                        reagents did not adversely affect                 transferrin were separated on a
of high concentrations of chaotropic    column performance.
agents such as guanidine-HCl.                                                             column of 250 mm length–104                 B. Separation after
                                                                                                                                         washing column
Robust synthetic polymer matrices                                                         peaks–than on a column of 150                  with 1N NaOH
                                        Separation of Several Peptides                    mm–80 peaks–or a column of 50
such as polystyrene-divinylbenzene      on a PS-DV3 Column
are stable under harsh conditions                                                         mm–65 peaks12.
and thus offer practical alternatives
to silica. Figure 12 shows the
                                                               3                          Column length may affect other
                                                           2                                                                          C. Separation after
separation of several peptides on
                                                                         5                aspects of the separation.                     washing column
                                                1                                                                                        with 1N H2SO4
a column based on synthetic                                                  6
                                                                   4                      Sample capacity
                                                                                          Sample capacity is a function of
Performance is similar to a silica
                                                                                          column volume. For columns of
based column, thus opening up
                                                                                          equal diameter, longer columns
the possibility of performing
                                                                                          maximize sample capacity.                Figure 13. Separation of peptides on a
polypeptide separations under            0             5            10           15 min
                                                                                                                                   synthetic polymer (polystyrene-divinylbenzene)
relatively harsh conditions on          Figure 12. Separation of peptides on synthetic                                             column before washing with strong reagents
synthetic polymer matrices.             polymer column (polystyrene-divinylbenzene).                                               (A), after washing with 1N NaOH (B), and
                                        Column: VYDAC® 259VHP5415 (PS-DVB,                                                         after washing with 1N sulfuric acid (C).
                                        5 µm, 4.6 x 150 mm) Eluent: 15–30% ACN                                                     Column: VYDAC® 259VHP5415 (PS-DVB, 5
                                        over 15 min. with 0.1% TFA. Flowrate: 1.0                                                  µm, 4.6 x 150 mm) Eluent: 15–30% ACN over
                                        mL/min. Peptides.1. oxytocin. 2. bradykinin.                                               15 min. with 0.1% TFA. Flowrate: 1.0 mL/min.
                                        3. neurotensin. 4. neurotensin 1–8. 5.                                                     Peptides. 1. oxytocin. 2. bradykinin. 3.
                                        angiotensin III. 6. val-4 angiotensin III.                                                 angiotensin II. 4. eledoisin. 5. neurotensin

12                                                                                                                                                                             13
Column Dimensions:                               The standard diameter of analytical                              Increased detection sensitivity                                                                                         Ability to work with smaller samples
Diameter                                         columns suitable for analysis of                                 Polypeptides elute in smaller volumes                                                                                   Increased detection sensitivity means
                                                 polypeptide samples of 1–200                                     of solvent at the reduced flow rates of                                                                                 that smaller amounts of polypeptide
The column diameter does not                     micrograms is 4.6 mm. Larger                                     small bore columns. Detector                                                                                            can be detected. Tryptic digests of as
affect peak resolution, but it does              diameter columns are used for                                    response increases in proportion                                                                                        little as five nanomoles of protein
affect sample loading, solvent usage             purification of large amounts of                                 to the reduction in flow rate. A                                                                                        have been separated and collected
and detection sensitivity. As the                polypeptide (see Pages 40–48 on                                  narrowbore column with a flow rate                                                                                      using narrowbore RP-HPLC columns.
diameter of an HPLC column is                    preparative separations). The use of                             of 200 microliters per minute gives
reduced, the flow rate is decreased,             small diameter columns (0.075 mm                                 a five-fold increase in sensitivity
thus lowering the amount of solvent              to 2.1 mm) has increased in recent                               compared with an analytical column
used, and the detection sensitivity              years. Small diameter columns offer:                             run at a flow rate of 1.0 mL/min.
is increased. Very small diameter
HPLC columns are particularly                    Reduction in solvent usage
useful when coupling HPLC with                   Flow rates of as little as a few                                 Separation of Tryptic Digest of Bovine Serum
                                                                                                                  Albumin on Capillary RP-HPLC Columns
mass spectrometry (LC/MS).                       microliters per minute are used with
                                                 capillary and small bore columns                                                           100%                                                              21.78
                                                                                                                                            90%                                                                       24.14                       (a)                      Max. 8.7e4 cps.
                                                 (See Appendix A, Page 50). Low                                                                     3.30

                                                 flow rates can significantly reduce the                                                    70%
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Total-Ion Chromatogram (TIC)
                                                                                                                                                   3.06                                                   21.42
                                                 amount of solvent needed for                                                               60%                                                                               27.60
                                                 polypeptide separations.                                                                   50%                      5.59                                                             27.96
                                                                                                                                            40%                                                                                               32.14
                                                                                                                                                                                                  17.02                                                                                              56.82
Separation of the Tryptic Digest                 Separation of the Tryptic Digest                                                                                                                    19.10

                                                                                                                   Relative Intensity (%)
                                                                                                                                            20%                                           13.73                                                                            45.40
of Hemoglobin on a Microbore                     of Myoglobin on a Capillary                                                                10%
                                                                                                                                                                                   9.64                                                                       35.65

(1 mm Diameter) Column                           (75 µm Diameter) Column                                                                                         5            10              15            20           25            30              35             40    45        50         55
                                                                          13.91                                                             100%
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  (b)                      Max. 4757.0 cps.
                                                                                                                                            60%                                                               21.78                               Base-Peak Chromatogram (BPC)
                                                                  13.24                   15.74                                                                                                                               27.00
                                                                                  14.56                                                                              6.54
                                                                                                                                                                                                          21.42                       27.96
                                                                       13.63                                                                20%    3.06
                                                     12.04     13.03                              16.51                                     10%
                                                  11.88                                                   17.79                              0%
                                                                                                                                                                 5            10              15            20           25          30                35             40    45        50         55
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                 Time (min)

                                                                                                                  Figure 16. Separation of the tryptic digest of bovine serum albumin (BSA) on a 300 µm i.d.
Figure 14. Separation of the tryptic digest of   Figure 15. Separation of the tryptic digest of                   capillary RP-HPLC Sample: 3 pmole. Column: VYDAC® 218MS5.305 5 µm, 300 Å, polymeric-C18
hemoglobin on a microbore RP-HPLC column         myoglobin on a capillary RP-HPLC column.                         reversed-phase (300 µm i.d. x 50 mm L). Flow: 5 µL/min. Mobile phase: A = 0.1% formic acid,
(Reference 26). Column: C18, 1.0 x 250 mm        Column: C18 (VYDAC® 218MS), 75 µm i.d.                           98% water, 2% ACN. B = 0.1% formic acid, 98% ACN, 2% water. Gradient: Hold 3% B from
(VYDAC® 218TP51). Flow rate: 50 µL/min.          capillary.Flow rate: 0.5 µL/min. Eluent:                         0 to 5 minutes. Then ramp from 3% B to 50% B at 65 minutes. Final ramp to 75% B at 70 minutes.
Eluent: Gradient from 0 to 40% B over 50         water/TFA/acetonitrile gradient.                                 Detection: MS. (a) Total ion count. (b) Base peak intensity. The base peak is defined as the
minutes, where Solvent A is 0.1% TFA in water                                                                     single mass peak with maximum amplitude at each time in the chromatogram. The base peak
and Solvent B is 0.1% TFA in acetonitrile.                                                                        chromatogram emphasizes peaks containing a single predominant molecular species and
                                                                                                                  deemphasizes heterogeneous peaks and noise. Data courtesy of Applied Biosystems.
14                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                           15
                                                                                 Analytical Conditions: The Role of the Mobile
                                                                                  Phase and Temperature in Reversed-Phase
                                                                                               HPLC Polypeptide Separations

Interface with mass spectrometry         Capillary columns can be interfaced     The desorption and elution of          ■ It has a low viscosity, minimizing
Direct transfer of the HPLC              with electrospray mass spectrometer     polypeptides from RP-HPLC                 column back-pressure;
eluent into the electrospray mass        interfaces or even nanoelectrospray     columns is accomplished with           ■ It has little UV adsorption at low
spectrometer interface is possible       interfaces after stream splitting.      aqueous solvents containing an            wavelengths;
with small bore columns and                                                      organic modifier and an ion-pair       ■ It has a long history of proven
attomole (10-18) levels of individual    An article by Davis and Lee provides    reagent or buffer. The organic            reliability in RP-HPLC
sample are routinely detected using      valuable information for getting the    modifier solubilizes and desorbs the      polypeptide separations.
sophisticated MS equipment.              best performance using microbore        polypeptide from the hydrophobic
(See LC/MS, Pages 28–31).                and capillary columns44 and is          surface while the ion-pair agent or    Isopropanol
                                         recommended reading for anyone          buffer sets the eluent pH and          Isopropanol is often used for large or
Current Trends in                        embarking on the use of small bore      interacts with the polypeptide to      very hydrophobic proteins. The major
Small Diameter Columns                   columns. A number of journal articles   enhance the separation. Elution is     disadvantage of isopropanol is its
                                         detail the use of mass spectrometers    accomplished by gradually raising      high viscosity. To reduce the viscosity
                                         with capillary columns41–43             the concentration of organic solvent   of isopropanol while retaining its
Narrowbore columns
                                         (Also see Pages 26–29).                 during the chromatographic run         hydrophobic characteristics, we
Narrowbore columns of 2.1 mm i.d.
                                                                                 (solvent gradient). When the solvent   recommend using a mixture of 50:50
are run at 100–300 microliters per       Examples                                reaches the precise concentration      acetonitrile: isopropanol. Adding
minute. Narrowbore columns are a         Microbore. Figure 14 illustrates        necessary to cause desorption, the     1–3% isopropanol to acetonitrile has
practical step for most laboratories     the separation of a tryptic digest      polypeptide is desorbed and elutes     been shown to increase protein
to take in reducing solvent usage and    of hemoglobin on a microbore            from the column.                       recovery in some cases52.
improving detection sensitivity. Most    (1.0 mm i.d.) column.
standard HPLC systems can operate
                                                                                 Organic Modifiers
at these low flow rates with little or   Capillary. Figure 15 is an example
no modification. Narrow bore             of the separation of a tryptic digest   The purpose of the organic solvent
                                                                                                                        Improved Resolution of Enzyme
columns with flow rates around 200       of myoglobin on a 75 µm i.d.            is to desorb polypeptide molecules     Subunits Using Low Gradient Slope
microliters/minute interface well with   capillary column.                       from the adsorbent hydrophobic
pneumatically-assisted lectrospray                                               surface. This is typically done by                                0.25%/min
mass spectrometer interfaces.            Capillary sample load. Figure 16        slowly raising the concentration of
                                                                                 organic solvent (gradient) until the         0.5%/min
                                         illustrates that three picomoles of
Microbore and capillary columns                                                  polypeptides of interest desorb
                                         a tryptic digest of BSA can be
Columns of 1.0 mm diameter and                                                   and elute.
                                         separated on a 300 µm i.d.
less offer significant reductions in
                                         capillary column. Detection was
solvent usage and increases in                                                   Acetonitrile (ACN)
                                         by mass spectrometry.
detection sensitivity, however                                                   Acetonitrile (ACN) is the most
these may require modifications                                                  commonly used organic modifier         Figure 17. Column: C18 (VYDAC® 218TP104)
to the HPLC system or the use of                                                 because:                               Flow rate: 1 mL/min. Eluent: Gradient slope
                                                                                                                        as shown. Gradient from 25–50% ACN in
instruments specifically designed                                                ■ It is volatile and easily removed    aqueous TFA. Sample: Subunits of cytochrome
for this purpose.                                                                  from collected fractions;            c oxidase. Data from reference 21.

16                                                                                                                                                               17
Ethanol                                   Figure 17 illustrates that, for proteins,             The Effect of Gradient Slope             Ion-Pairing Reagents
Ethanol is often used for process         decreasing the slope of the gradient                  on Peptide Selectivity                   and Buffers
scale purifications. Ethanol is a         generally improves resolution.
                                                                                                Because of slight differences in         The ion-pairing reagent or buffer
good RP-HPLC solvent, it is readily                                                                                                      sets the eluent pH and interacts
available at reasonable cost and it is    For the best reproducibility and                      the way that some peptides interact
                                                                                                with the reversed-phase surface,         with the polypeptide to enhance
familiar to regulatory agencies such      equilibration, avoid extremes in
                                                                                                the slope of the solvent gradient        the separation.
as the FDA. Ethanol has been used to      organic modifier composition. We
elute hydrophobic, membrane-spanning      recommend beginning gradients at                      may affect peptide selectivity and,
                                                                                                                                         Trifluoroacetic acid
proteins33 and is used in process         no less than 3 to 5% organic modifier                 therefore, resolution between
                                                                                                                                         The most common ion-pairing
purifications59.                          concentration. Gradients beginning                    peptide pairs.
                                                                                                                                         reagent is trifluoroacetic acid (TFA).
                                          with less organic modifier may cause                                                           It is widely used because:
Methanol or other solvents                column equilibration to be long                       This effect is best illustrated by the
                                                                                                separation of a tryptic digest of        ■ It is volatile and easily removed
Methanol or other solvents offer little   or irreproducible because of the
                                                                                                human growth hormone at different           from collected fractions;
advantage over the more commonly          difficulty in "wetting" the surface.
                                                                                                gradient times with different            ■ It has little UV adsorption at low
used solvents and are not used for        We also recommend ending gradients
                                                                                                gradient slopes. Figure 18 shows the        wavelengths;
polypeptide separations.                  at no more than 95% organic modifier.
                                                                                                separation of several tryptic digest     ■ It has a long history of proven
                                          High organic concentrations may
                                          remove all traces of water from the                   fragments from human growth                 reliability in RP-HPLC
Elution Gradients
                                          organic phase, also making column                     hormone at three different gradient         polypeptide separations.
Solvent gradients are almost always       equilibration more difficult.                         slopes (times). As the slope is
used to elute polypeptides. Slowly                                                              decreased fragments 9 and 10             TFA is normally used at
raising the concentration of organic                                                            behave as expected, that is resolution   concentrations of about 0.1%
solvent results in the sharpest peaks     Peptide Separation with Different                     increases as the gradient slope is       (w/v). TFA concentrations up to
                                          Gradient Times                                                                                 0.5% have been useful in solubilizing
and best resolution.                                                                            decreased (increasing gradient time).
                                                                                  13            Fragments 11 and 12, however,            larger or more hydrophobic proteins
Gradient elution is generally preferred                                 11 12                   behave differently. Resolution           and lower concentrations are
                                              A. 45 minutes
for polypeptide separations. Peaks                                                              decreases as the gradient slope is       occasionally used for tryptic digest
tend to be unacceptably broad in                                                   13           decreased, indicating a change in        separations. When chromatographing
isocratic elution and very low                                    9        11                   the selectivity with changing            proteins, using TFA concentrations
                                              B. 115 minutes       10
gradient slopes are preferred to                                                                gradient slope. This effect should       below 0.1% may degrade peak shape,
isocratic elution. A typical solvent                                     11+12                  be monitored when changing               although new column developments
gradient has a slope of 0.5 to 1% per                             9                             gradient slope by making only            allow the use of much lower TFA
minute increase in organic modifier           C. 180 minutes                                    modest changes in the gradient           concentrations (see Page 28).
concentration. Extremely shallow                                                                slope when developing a method
gradients, as low as .05 to 0.1% per      Figure 18. The effect of gradient time (slope) on     and examining the effect this has        Elution gradients with a constant
                                          peptide selectivity. Column: C18, 150 x 4.6 mm.
minute, can be used to maximize           Flow rate: 1 mL/min. Eluent: Gradient from            on each peptide pair.                    concentration of TFA sometimes
resolution. The gradient slope used to    0–60% ACN in aqueous 0.1% TFA in A. 45 min.;                                                   result in a drifting baseline when
                                          B. 115 min.; C. 180 min. Sample: tryptic digest
separate insulin variants in Figure 1     of human growth hormone. Fragments 9, 10,                                                      monitoring at 210–220 nm.
(Page 2) was only 0.25% per minute.       11, 12, 13 from the digest. Data from reference 38.

18                                                                                                                                                                            19
The change in dielectric constant as    concentration very carefully in                 Alternate Ion Pairing Agents               because TFA reduces the ion signal
the solvent environment goes from       peptide separation methods. This also           Although TFA is widely used as             in the electrospray interface and the
aqueous to non-aqueous affects π–π      provides another tool for optimizing            the ion pairing reagent, use of other      volatile acid, formic acid, has proven
electron interactions which, in turn,   peptide resolution. After the column            reagents may result in better              to be effective in the LC/MS of
affects the adsorption spectrum in      and gradient conditions have been               resolution or peak shape than TFA.         peptides (See Pages 26–29 for a
the 190 to 250 nm region, leading       selected, it is possible to vary the            In the separation of five small            more detailed discussion of LC/MS).
to a baseline shift during many         TFA concentration slightly to                   peptides (Figure 20) phosphate gives       Guo and colleagues compared the
reversed-phase separtions. To reduce    further optimize resolution between             sharper peaks for some peptides than       use of TFA, HFBA and phosphoric
or eliminate baseline drift due to      peptide pairs.                                  TFA and causes a reversal in the           acid in the elution of peptides and
TFA spectral adsorption, adjust the                                                     elution order of oxytocin and              found that each gave somewhat
wavelength as close to 215 nm as                                                        bradykinin. The last three peaks           different selectivity8.
possible and put ~15% less TFA in                                                       are sharper in phosphate than TFA
Solvent B than in Solvent A to                                                          because phosphate interacts with
compensate for the shift. For           The Effect of TFA Concentration                 basic side chains, increasing the          Comparison of TFA and Alternate
example, use 0.1% TFA in Solvent A      on Peptide Selectivity                                                                     Ion-Pairing Agents/Buffers for the
                                                                                        rigidity of the peptide. Bradykinin        Separation of Peptides
and 0.085% TFA in Solvent B.                                                            elutes earlier in phosphate than TFA
                                                 0.1% TFA                               because TFA pairs with the two                A. 0.1% TFA           1
It is important to use good quality                                                                                                                                                 5
                                                                                        arginines in bradykinin resulting in                                        3
TFA and to obtain it in small                                                                                                                                   2           4
                                                                                        relatively longer retention. Also, two
amounts. Poor quality or aged
                                                                                        small impurities, hidden in the
TFA may have impurities that
                                                                                        TFA separation, were revealed by
chromatograph in the reversed-phase                                                                                                   B. 20 mM Phosphate, pH 2.0
                                                                                        phosphate (Fig. 20B). Hydrochloric
system, causing spurious peaks to                                                                                                                               1                   5
                                                 0.3% TFA                               acid also reverses the elution order
appear (see Appendix B).                                                                                                                                            3
                                                                                        of oxytocin and bradykinin and                                                      4
                                                                                        separates impurities not seen in TFA
The Effect of TFA                                                                       (Figure 20C).
Concentration on Selectivity
                                                                                                                                      C. 5 mM HCI, pH 2.0

The concentration of trifluoroacetic                                                    Heptafluorobutyric acid (HFBA) is                               1
acid may affect selectivity or          Figure 19. Significant differences in the       effective in separating basic proteins20
                                        peptide separation pattern due to differences   and triethylamine phosphate (TEAP)                          2                   4
resolution of specific peptide pairs.   in TFA concentration are evident. Column: C18
                                        (VYDAC® 218TP54). Flow rate: 1 mL/min.          has been used for preparative
Although TFA is typically present in    Eluent: Gradient from 0–50% ACN in              separations46, 47, 49. One study found
                                        aqueous TFA, concentration as indicated.
the mobile phase at concentrations      Sample: Tryptic digest of apotransferrin.       that sample capacity was greater           Figure 20. Elution of five peptides using TFA
of 0.05 to 0.1%, varying the            Note: Only part of the chromatogram is shown.   using TEAP than with TFA32. Formic         (A), Phosphate (B) or HCl (C) as the buffer/
concentration of TFA has a subtle                                                       acid, in concentrations of 10 to 60%,      ion-pairing agent. Column: VYDAC® 218TP54
                                                                                                                                   (C18, 5 µm, 4.6 x 250 mm). Eluent: 15–30%
affect on peptide selectivity as                                                        has been used for the chromatography       ACN in 30 min at 1.0 mL/min; plus A. 0.1%
illustrated in Figure 19. This means                                                    of very hydrophobic polypeptides.          TFA B. 20 mM phosphate, pH 2.0 C. 5 mM
                                                                                                                                   HCl, pH 2.0 Peptides: 1. oxytocin 2.
that, for good reproducibility, it is                                                   Formic acid is also gaining usage in       bradykinin 3. angiotensin II 4. neurotensin
important to control the TFA                                                            LC/MS separation of peptides               5. angiotensin I.

20                                                                                                                                                                                      21
The Effect of pH                                      Angiotensin II, which elutes third       Developing Conditions
on Peptide Separations                                at pH 2.0 to 4.4, now elutes first.      for HPLC Separation of
                                                      Neurotensin elutes before oxytocin;      Peptide Fragments from
Peptide separations are often
                                                      bradykinin and neurotensin co-elute.
sensitive to the eluent pH because                                                             a Protein Digest
                                                      This illustrates that pH can have a
of protonation or deprotonation of
                                                      dramatic effect on peptide selectivity   Although most enzymatic maps
acidic or basic side-chains, as
                                                      and can be a useful tool in              are performed using 0.1% TFA as
illustrated in Figure 21. All five
                                                      optimizing peptide separations.          the ion-pairing reagent, resolution
peptides elute earlier at pH 4.4
                                                                                               may sometimes be better using a
(Figure 21B) than at pH 2.0
                                                      Synthetic polymer-based reversed-phase   different ion-pairing agent or a
(Figure 21A) and the relative
                                                      materials expand the practical pH        higher pH.
retention of peptides changes. This
is due to ionization of acidic groups                 range to nearly pH 14 (See Figure
                                                      13, Page 13). Peptides elute very        TFA is widely used as an ion-pairing     Separation of Peptides on Synthetic
in the peptides. Bradykinin and                                                                                                         Polymer (Polystyrene-Divinylbenzene)
                                                      differently at high pH than they do at   reagent and is the best starting point
oxytocin are well separated at pH                                                                                                       Column at Low and High pH
                                                      low pH as illustrated in Figure 22. In   for peptide separations. However,
2.0 but co-elute at pH 4.4. Peptide
                                                      going from pH 2 to pH 9 the peptides     consider the use of buffers such as
retention at pH 6.5 (Figure 21C) is                                                                                                        A. pH 2                  3
                                                      in the example change relative elution   phosphate or hydrochloric acid or                           2
greater than at pH 4.4, however the                                                                                                                                             5
                                                      orders significantly.                    exploring pH effects to optimize
elution order is drastically different.                                                                                                          1
                                                                                               peptide separations. To test pH                                          4               6
                                                                                               effects, prepare a 100 mM solution
The Effect of pH on Peptide Separations                                                        of phosphate—about pH 4.4. Adjust
                                                                                               one-third of this to pH 2.0 with
                                                                                               phosphoric acid and one-third to pH
                                                                                               6.5 with NaOH. Then dilute each to                                           6
                 2                      1+2                                       2                                                        B. pH 9              1
                                                                                               10–20 mM for the eluent buffers.                      4
                             5                                                          5
                                              3                                                Testing peptide resolution with TFA,
                     3                                                      1+4
                                                                                               each of the three phosphate buffers                                              2

            1            4                        4                                            (pH 2.0, pH 4.4 and pH 6.5) and
                                                                                               HCl is an excellent way to find the
                                                                                               optimum reagent and pH conditions
                                                                                               to develop a good peptide separation.
                A. pH 2.0                 B. pH 4.4                         C. pH 6.5

Figure 21. Elution of five peptides at pH 2.0, 4.4 and 6.5 with phosphate as the buffer.
Column: VYDAC® 218TP54 (C18, 5 µm, 4.6 x 250 mm). Eluent: 15–30% ACN in 30 min at 1.0                                                   Figure 22. Column: VYDAC® 259VHP5415
mL/min; plus A. 20 mM phosphate, pH 2.0 B. 20 mM phosphate, pH 4.4 C. 20 mM phosphate, pH                                               (PS-DVB, 5 µm, 4.6 x 150 mm) Eluent:
6.5 Peptides: 1. bradykinin 2. oxytocin 3. angiotensin II 4. neurotensin 5. angiotensin I.                                              15–30% ACN over 15 min. with A. 0.1% TFA,
                                                                                                                                        pH 2. B. 15 mM NaOH, pH 9. Flowrate: 1.0
                                                                                                                                        mL/min. Peptides: 1. oxytocin. 2. bradykinin.
                                                                                                                                        3. neurotensin. 4. neurotensin 1-8. 5.
                                                                                                                                        angiotensin III. 6. val-4 angiotensin III.

22                                                                                                                                                                                              23
Mobile Phase Flow Rate                   It should be noted that, when                         Sample solubility                       The Effect of Temperature
                                         refining a separation of small                        High flow rates may improve             on Peptide Separations
Flow rate has little effect on           peptides where resolution is limited,                 the solubility of hydrophobic
polypeptide separations. The             slight improvements in resolution                                                             Column temperature affects solvent
                                                                                               polypeptides although this also
desorption of polypeptides from          may be gained through minor                                                                   viscosity, column back pressure and
                                                                                               increases the amount of solvent to
the reversed-phase surface, and          changes in the eluent flow rate. The                                                          retention times. It may also affect
                                                                                               be removed from the purified sample.
hence resolution, is not affected        flow rate may also influence other                                                            peptide selectivity.
by the flow rate.                        aspects of a separation such as:                      Column back-pressure
                                                                                               Column back-pressure is directly        Temperature is an important
Polypeptide desorption is the result     Detection sensitivity                                 related to flow rate. The higher        separation parameter when
of reaching a precise organic modifier   Low flow rates elute polypeptides                     the flow rate the higher the            chromatographing peptides and
concentration. Protein resolution,       in small volumes of solvent and,                      column back-pressure.                   should be optimized in any HPLC
therefore, is relatively independent     consequently, adsorption and                                                                  method for the separation of
of mobile phase flow rate.               sensitivity increase. The major                       Gradient                                peptides.This is illustrated in Figure
                                         reason that narrowbore HPLC                           Changes in eluent flow rate may         23 by the separation of fragments
The resolution of small peptides may     columns increase detection                            subtly affect gradient slope and        from a tryptic digest of human
be affected by the eluent flow rate      sensitivity is because they are run                   shape, depending on the hardware        growth hormone39. At 20˚C
because their behavior on RP-HPLC        at low flow rates and polypeptides                    configuration used. Since polypeptide   fragments 11, 12 and 13 nearly
columns is between that of proteins      are eluted in small volumes of solvent.               separations are sensitive to gradient   co-elute. As the temperature is raised
and small molecules (see Page 4).                                                              conditions, flow rate adjustments       fragment 13 is more retained than
Stone and Williams found that the                                                              may change the resolution due to        fragments 11 and 12, resulting in
number of peptide fragments              The Effect of Temperature on the
                                                                                               the effects on the gradient shape.      good resolution between the three
separated from a tryptic digest of       Separation of Peptide Fragments
                                                                                                                                       peptides at 40˚C. At 60˚C, however,
carboxymethylated transferrin                                                                                                          fragments 11 and 12 co-elute,
depended on the eluent flow rate12.                           13                     15
                                                     20°C                                                                              showing the change in selectivity
                                                             11 12                        14
On an analytical HPLC column,                                                                                                          as the temperature is raised. At 20˚C
fewer than 80 peptide fragments                                                                                                        fragment 15 elutes before fragment
were resolved at a flow rate of 0.2                                                                                                    14, at 40˚C they nearly co-elute and
mL/min, compared to 116 fragments                    40°C             13               15                                              at 60˚C fragment 14 elutes first and
                                                                 12                  14
being resolved at 0.8 mL/min.                               11
                                                                                                                                       the two are well separated. These
From flow rates of 0.5 mL/min                                                                                                          results illustrate the significant
to 1.0 mL/min there was little                                                                                                         impact that temperature may have
difference in the number of peptide                          11 12                        15
                                                     60°C                  13                                                          on peptide selectivity.
fragments resolved.

                                         Figure 23. Column: C18, 4.6 x 150 mm.
                                         Flow rate: 1 mL/min. Eluent: Gradient from
                                         0–60% ACN in aqueous .1% TFA in 60 min.
                                         Temperature: As indicated. Sample: Tryptic
                                         digest of human growth hormone. Data from
                                         Reference 39.

24                                                                                                                                                                         25
         Reversed-Phase HPLC/Mass Spectrometry
                   for the Analysis of Polypeptides

T   he development of the
    electrospray interface to couple
mass spectrometry with HPLC has
                                                    The combination of mass spectrometry
                                                    with HPLC reduces the need for
                                                    chromatographic resolution because
                                                                                            LC/MS Uses Short Columns
                                                                                            for Rapid Analysis

caused a virtual explosion in the                   of the resolving capacity of the mass   The trend in LC/MS toward faster
use of LC/MS in the analysis of                     spectrometer. Analysis times are        analyses with reduced resolution          The Use of Low Concentrations
polypeptides. RP-HPLC peptide                       generally short to best utilize the     has led to the use of relatively short    of TFA for Peptide Separations
maps are routinely monitored by an                  sophisticated mass spectrometer.        columns with very fast gradients.
on-line mass spectrometer, obtaining                Detection sensitivity is often much                                                                    1       2                 4
                                                                                            The trend toward reduced resolution           0.1% TFA
peptide molecular weights and                       better with mass spectrometry than                                                                                       3
causing fragmentation of peptides                   with UV detection.                      and faster separations has led to the
to obtain sequence information.                                                             use of short columns packed with
                                                                                            smaller particle adsorbents than
                                                                                            normal. The most commonly used
                                                                                            particle size in short columns is three
                                                                                                                                          0.05% TFA
Rapid Separation of Proteins Using Short (50 mm) Column                                     micrometers. Using three micrometer                            1       2             4
                                                                                            columns of five to ten centimeter
                                                                                            length with fast gradients enables
                                           3                                                polypeptide separations to be
                                      2                                                     completed in just a few minutes.
                                                                                            Figure 24 shows the separation of
                                                                     5                      five proteins in less than five               0.02% TFA
                                                                                                                                                       1        2            4
                                                                                            minutes using a 50 mm long
                                                                                            column packed with 3 µm particles                                        3
                                                                                            using a fast gradient.
     0            1               2                 3            4             5

Figure 24. Column: C18, 3 µm 4.6 x 50 mm (VYDAC® 238TP3405). Flow rate: 4.0 ml/min.                                                       0.01% TFA
Eluent: Gradient from 20–45% ACN in aqueous 0.1% TFA in 4 min. Sample: protein standards.                                                              1           2
(1) ribonuclease, (2) insulin, (3) cytochrome c, (4) BSA and (5) myoglobin.

                                                                                                                                      0               10                 20              30

                                                                                                                                      Figure 25. Column: C18, 5 µm, 4.6 x 250 mm
                                                                                                                                      (VYDAC® 218MS54). Flow rate: 1.5 mL/min.
                                                                                                                                      Eluent: Gradient from 5–19% ACN in aqueous
                                                                                                                                      0.1% TFA. Sample: 1. neurotensin (1–8 frag)
                                                                                                                                      2. oxytocin 3. angiotensin II 4. neurotensin.

26                                                                                                                                                                                        27
Reducing or Eliminating TFA                       In some cases the TFA may be              identification of peptide fragments of                                                                              value the mass spectrum was
in the Mobile Phase                               completely replaced with formic or        proteins generated by enzymatic                                                                                     obtained on the eluting peak and its
                                                  acetic acid while retaining good          digests. The example in Figure 27                                                                                   molecular weight was reported. The
TFA forms such strong complexes                   resolution. Figure 25 shows the           shows the separation of a tryptic                                                                                   eluting peak was then fragmented in
with polypeptides that electrospray               separation of several peptides on         digest of bovine serum albumin                                                                                      a triple quadrupole mass analyzer
signal, and hence detection                       an HPLC column specially                  followed by mass spectrometric                                                                                      producing product ions of the peptide
sensitivity, is reduced when TFA is               developed to allow the use of very        analysis. The eluent from the                                                                                       which were used to generate a
present at concentrations typical                 low concentrations of TFA. Good           column was monitored by on-line                                                                                     sequence of the peptide (Figure 27,
for polypeptide separations.                      peak shapes are maintained on this        mass spectrometry, measuring the                                                                                    bottom). The peptide fragments can
                                                  column with only 0.01% TFA. It            total ion current (Figure 27, top).                                                                                 also be matched with a protein or
The reduction of electrospray signal              should be noted, however, that the        When the current exceeded a threshold                                                                               DNA database to identify the protein.
by TFA has led to the use of ion-pair             TFA concentration does affect
reagents such as formic acid and                  peptide selectivity.                      Identification of Peptide Fragment of Proteins from Enzymatic Digest
acetic acid for polypeptide separations.
                                                                                                                      Total-Ion Chromatogram (TIC) TOF MS Data
These ion-pair reagents, however, do              Figure 26 demonstrates that, with                             100

                                                                                            Rel. Int. (%)
                                                                                                                                      4.81                                                      25.46
not always give good resolution.                                                                                80
                                                  columns developed for use with                                60
                                                                                                                                          5.23                                21.42                                                                                53.74
                                                                                                                           3.06                                                                     27.60
Recent developments in HPLC                       low concentrations of TFA, it is                              40    2.56
                                                                                                                                                                      17.02                              29.34
                                                                                                                                                                                                                 32.14                                                       56.82
                                                                                                                                                             13.73                                                  32.87                       45.40 47.19
columns have resulted in columns                  sometimes possible to eliminate                               20                               7.61 9.64                                                              35.65

with good polypeptide peak shapes                 the TFA entirely, relying on ion pair                               0               5             10         15             20           25            30           35          40        45            50        55

using very low concentrations of TFA.             reagents such as acetic acid.                                 145
                                                                                                                      MS-MS of peak at 21.78 minutes
                                                                                                                135                                                                 589.3375
                                                                                                                                 K           V           P     Q          V           S         T           P     T          L         V    E         V        S         R
Tryptic Map Replacing TFA                         HPLC columns developed for low
with Acetic Acid (No TFA)                         TFA use enable the use of a wider

                                                  selection of ion-pairing reagents to                          105
                                                  optimize resolution of peptides.

                                                                                            Intensity, counts
                                                  Peptide separations can now be                                 80
                             C4 (214MS54)                                                                        75
                                                  done with acetic acid or formic                                70
                                                                                                                                                         361.2241    450.7655

                                                  acid acid replacing the trifluoroacetic                        60
                                                                                                                          I,L                                                              702.4187
                                                  acid. Mixtures of ion-pair reagents                            45
                                                                                                                             R                           b3
                                                                                                                 40                                       325.1907                                  b7
                                                  can also be used to optimize a                                 35
                                                                                                                           72.0807           b2 y2
                                                                                                                                                                              541.6491                            y8
                                                                                                                 30                                                                                y7                 938.5566
                                                  peptide separation.                                            25                   y1 a2                                517.3188             803.4648
                                                                                                                 20                     175.1184                     b4      b5 552.3654                                          b10
                                                                                                                 15                                                     465.5980                813.4511                      y9
                             C18 (218MS54)                                                                       10
                                                                                                                                                                                       693.3699                                      y10 b11
                                                  Example of Peptide Isolation                                    5
                                                                                                                                                                                                747.4450                               1088.6237

0                  Minutes                   60
                                                  and Sequencing                                                                100       200         300     400       500        600      700          800     900       1000 1100 1200 1300 1400 1500
                                                                                                                                                                                                    m/z, amu
                                                  Reversed-phase HPLC using                 Figure 27. Reversed-phase separation of tryptic digest peptides of bovine serum albumin (BSA)
Figure 26. Columns: Columns developed for
peptide separations in the absence of TFA.        capillary columns with very small         followed by MS determination of molecular weights of each peptide followed in turn by MS
Top: C4 (VYDAC® 214MS54); Bottom: C18                                                       fragmentation of each peptide providing data to enable sequencing of the separated peptide.
                                                  sample loads coupled with mass            Sample: 3 pmole of a tryptic digest of bovine serum albumin. Column: VYDAC® 218MS5.305, 5 µm,
(VYDAC® 218MS54;). Flow rate: 1 ml/min.
Eluent. Gradient from 0–30% ACN in 5 mM           spectrometry has become a                 300 Å, polymeric-C18 reversed-phase (300 µm i.d. x 50 mm). Flow rate: 5 µL/min. Mobile phase:
HOAc. Sample: Tryptic digest of apotransferrin.   powerful tool for the isolation and       A = 0.1% formic acid, 98% water, 2% ACN. B = 0.1% formic acid, 98% ACN, 2% water.
                                                                                            Gradient: Hold 3% B from 0 to 5 minutes. Then ramp from 3% B to 50% B at 65 minutes.
                                                                                            Final ramp to 75% B at 70 minutes. Detection: Triple quadrupole MS. Data from Reference 75.

28                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                   29
                           The Role of Reversed-Phase HPLC
                                       in Proteomic Analysis

P   roteomics is the study of cellular
    processes by identification and
quantitation of expressed proteins.
                                                 Newer proteomic techniques involve
                                                 the chromatographic separation of
                                                 peptide fragments generated by
                                                                                           Scientists from the Protein
                                                                                           Characterization and Proteomics
                                                                                           Laboratory at the University of
                                                                                                                                                                                                                  which could be therapeutic targets for
                                                                                                                                                                                                                  mediation of P. aeruginosa biofilms
                                                                                                                                                                                                                  that do not respond to conventional
Proteomics seeks to catalogue all                protease digests of whole cell lysates.   Cincinnati College of Medicine                                                                                         antibiotic therapy and are involved
expressed proteins in prokaryote or              This approach produces very large         reported using a capillary (300 µm                                                                                     in a number of human diseases
differentiated eukaryote cells and is            numbers of peptide fragments which        i.d. x 100 mm) reversed-phase column                                                                                   including cystic fibrosis. The proteins
used to compare protein expression               require high resolution techniques        together with a triple-quadrupole                                                                                      were first extracted and separated by
in two states, for instance comparing            to resolve. Two-dimensional               mass spectrometer for detection and                                                                                    SDS-PAGE. Bands of interest were
protein expression in normal cells and           chromatography, consisting of             identification of expressed sequence                                                                                   digested and subjected to RP-HPLC
diseased cells or in diseased cells and          separation of the peptide fragments       tags to identify gene products in                                                                                      separation followed by MS and
cells treated with a therapeutic drug.           by ion exchange chromatography            Pseudomonas aeruginosa (Example                                                                                        tandem MS to obtain data for
                                                 followed by separation of the ion         shown in Figure 29). One objective                                                                                     protein database searching76.
Proteomic methodologies have                     exchange fractions by RP-HPLC, has        of this work was to identify proteins
traditionally used two-dimensional               been recently described43. The
gel electrophoresis to separate and              peptide fragments separated by the        Proteomic Analysis of Pseudomonas aeruginosa
isolate cellular proteins. The separated         two chromatography steps are then                                                        1.4e8          (a)                                  Survey Scan   48.74

proteins are then protease digested              analyzed by electrospray ionization                                                      1.2e8
                                                                                                                                                                                              Mass Spectrum
                                                                                                                                                         Q3 Survey Scan                           43.37    45.8047.32    51.58
and the resulting peptides are                   and tandem mass spectrometry. The                                                                                                                                    51.17

                                                                                                                         Intensity, cps
                                                                                                                                           1e8                   30.41                36.79               44.79          50.97
analyzed by Matrix-Assisted Laser                MS results are compared to DNA                                                                                                                                                    54.31
                                                                                                                                                                      31.42      35.68     40.23
Desorption Ionization (MALDI) mass               or protein databases for identification                                                                                              36.99 42.97                                         55.33
                                                                                                                                           6e7                                         38.21
spectrometry. The results are compared           (Figure 28).                                                                                                 29.80      32.94                                                             56.04
                                                                                                                                           4e7                                34.06
to protein and DNA databases for                                                                                                                                                                                                                57.76
                                                                                                                                           2e7          28.49
identification of the isolated proteins.
                                                                                                                                                   26 28 30 32 34 36 38 40 42 44 46 48 50 52 54 56 58 60
                                                                                                                                                                           Time, min
Proteomic Analysis of Cellular Proteins by Two-dimensional                                                                                                                    M+2H
Chromatography and Tandem Mass Spectrometry                                                                    2.8e6
                                                                                                                                                                                        Precursor ion selected by IDA                                           Max. 2.8e6 cps
                                                                                                                        Survey scan mass spectrum

                                                                                            Intensity, cps
                                                                                                               2.0e6                                                                                         LC/MS Elongation factor Tu,
                                                                                                               1.6e6                                                                                         Gene PA4265
                                                                                                                                                                                                             Band 16
                                                                                                                                                                                                             Pseudomonas aeruginosa
                                                                  Tandem Mass                                  4.0e5                                              755.1     843.3
                                                                                                                                                        597.4 677.1
       Cellular         Peptide      Ion     Reversed-             spectrometry                                                                                       766.6    927.4                   1034.9 1125.8                                                1631.3
       proteins       fragments   Exchange    phase                                                                400                     500          600       700          800       900       1000   1100           1200      1300     1400        1500     1600     1700
                                                                                                                                                                                                    m/z, amu
                                                                                                                                                   213.0 b2                                y5
                                                                                                               1.20e4                        a2                                                     Product ion mass spectrum                                   Max. 1.3e4 cps
                                                                                                                           (b)                185.0                                       597.5
                                                                                                                                                                                                    LV E T L D S Y I P E P V R
                                                                                              Intensity, cps

                                                                                                                8000                                               371.3
                                                                                                                                                                                                   a7 –18                        y9
                                                                                                                6000                                                                                711.5
                                                                  Mass spectra of                                                                                                                                   y7    y8
                                                                                                                                                                                                                               1075.5                    y12 –18
                                                                 peptides and MS                                4000                        342.3 443.3    563.3
                                                                                                                                                                                                                   874.3 960.5                 y10    y11        y12
                                                                  fragmentation                                           85.8 175.3   312.0     425.3   538.3                                                                                1188.8 1290.5     1419.0
                                                                                                                2000                                                                                                                                       1401.3
       Database Identification                                     product ions                                               157.3
                                                                                                                                                     479.3       692.3                                    741.8
         of cellular proteins                                                                                      0
                                                                                                                             100                  200      300        400       500       600      700   800            900     1000   1100     1200     1300     1400    1500
                                                                                                                                                                                                    m/z, amu

Figure 28.                                                                                 Figure 29.

30                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                               31
           Examples of the Use of Reversed-Phase
              HPLC in the Analysis of Polypeptides

R    eversed-phase HPLC has
     become a principle analytical
technique in the separation and
                                                 Natural and
                                                 Synthetic Peptides
                                                                                                 Protein Digests
                                                                                                 The study and analysis of proteins
                                                                                                                                           The defect causing sickle cell anemia
                                                                                                                                           is the replacement of glutamic acid
                                                                                                                                           by valine in position 6 in the
                                                 RP-HPLC has long been important                 have long involved protease digestion
analysis of proteins and peptides. It                                                                                                      hemglobin protein. Tryptic digests
                                                 in the separation and isolation of              to produce small peptide fragments,
is widely used in research studying                                                                                                        can reveal amino acid changes in a
                                                 natural and synthetic peptides. C18             which can then be sequenced or
natural proteins and peptides and in                                                                                                       protein by the effect the change has
                                                 columns are most commonly used in               which provide important information
the analysis of protein therapeutic                                                                                                        on the tryptic fragment containing
                                                 the isolation of peptides as illustrated        on the character and nature of the
products in the pharmaceutical industry.                                                                                                   that position. As illustrated in Figure
                                                 in Figure 30 in the separation of two           protein. Although many proteases
This section will focus on a number                                                                                                        32 comparing the tryptic maps of
                                                 naturally occuring cardioacceleratory           have been used, trypsin, which
of applications and uses, with typical                                                                                                     normal hemoglobin and sickle cell
                                                 peptides17. Elution conditions are              cleaves a polypeptide backbone at
specific analytical conditions, to                                                                                                         hemoglobin, the substitution of valine
                                                 generally gradients from low to                 the carboxy-terminus of lysine or
increase understanding of how to put                                                                                                       for glutamic acid causes the peptide
                                                 moderate concentrations of                      arginine, has been the most popular
into practice the previous sections                                                                                                        fragment containing position 6 to
                                                 acetonitrile and use 0.1% TFA.                  protease. Digestion typically involves
which have focused on laying a foun-                                                                                                       shift to longer retention because
                                                                                                 denaturation of the protein in the
dation of theory and practical aspects                                                                                                     valine is more hydrophobic than
                                                 RP-HPLC was used to separate                    presence of high concentrations of
of the RP-HPLC separation of                                                                                                               glutamic acid26.
                                                 peptides related to Alzheimer's                 a chaotropic agent such as
                                                 disease18 and is widely used to                 guanidine-HCl (6 M) or urea (8 M)
                                                 purify synthetic peptides (Page 49).            together with the addition of a
                                                                                                 reducing agent to reduce the
                                                                                                 disulfide bonds present in the protein.
RP-HPLC Separation of Natural Peptides                                                           The free cysteines are usually            RP-HPLC Separation of the Tryptic
                                                                                                                                           Digest of a Monoclonal Antibody
                                                                                                 carboxymethylated to prevent
                                                                                                 reformation of disulfide bonds.
               cardioactive peptides
                                                                                                 Digestion may be performed at room
                                                                                                 temperatures or higher temperatures
                                                                                                 which reduce the time required for
                                                                                                 the digestion. The resulting fragments
                                                                                                 of the protein, averaging about 10
                                                                                                 amino acids each, can be separated
                                                                                                 by RP-HPLC under conditions such
                                                                                                 as those shown in Figure 31. In this
                                                                                                 instance a monoclonal antibody was
                                                                                                 digested and the resulting fragments
                                                                                                                                           0    10    20   30    40    50    60 min
                                                                                                 chromatographed on a C18 column
                                                                                                 (VYDAC® 218TP54) using a                  Figure 31. Column: VYDAC® 218TP54 (C18,
Figure 30. RP-HPLC was used to separate two octapeptides with cardioacceleratory activity from   gradient from 0 to 40% acetonitrile       5 µm, 4.6 x 250 mm) Eluent: Gradient from
an extract of Periplaneta Americana—american cockroach. Column: VYDAC® 218TP54 (C18, 5 µm,                                                 0–40% acetonitrile with 0.1% TFA over
4.6 x 250 mm) Eluent: Hold at 18% ACN for 10 min; 18–30% ACN from 10–70 min, 30–60% ACN
                                                                                                 containing 0.1% TFA.                      65 minutes. Data from Reference 27.
from 70–100 min; all with 0.1% TFA Data from Reference 17.

32                                                                                                                                                                                     33
One of the most common                                                             for new peptide fragments eluting               Peptide Maps to                           Protein Analysis
degradations to occur with protein                                                 slightly later than fragments which             Identify Glycopeptides                    While peptide digests are often
therapeutics is the conversion of an                                               are known to contain asparagine.
                                                                                                                                   The LC/MS analysis of a tryptic           used to study protein structure,
asparagine residue to either aspartic                                              Under acidic conditions aspartic acid
                                                                                                                                   digest provides information about the     intact proteins can be separated and
acid or isoaspartic acid, termed                                                   is slightly more hydrophobic than
                                                                                                                                   structure of a protein. It is possible,   analyzed by RP-HPLC, providing
deamidation14. Deamidation often                                                   asparagine, thus a fragment containing
                                                                                                                                   among other things, to identify the       information about the intact protein.
results in the loss of biological                                                  the aspartic acid deamidation product
                                                                                                                                   site of glycosylation (addition of an     RP-HPLC is sensitive to both
activity. A common means of                                                        will elute slightly later than a
                                                                                                                                   oligosaccharide) of a protein. During     protein modifications, such as
determining deamidation is to digest                                               fragment containing asparagine.
                                                                                                                                   the RP-HPLC separation of the             deamidation or oxidation, and to
the protein with trypsin and to look
                                                                                                                                   peptide fragments, the mass               protein conformation.
                                                                                                                                   spectrometer is switching between
Tryptic Maps of Normal Hemoglobin                                                  RP-HPLC Used in the                             measurement of the mass (m/z) of the      Glycosylated Peptides
and Sickle Cell Hemoglobin                                                         Study of Protein Deamidation                    intact peptide and fragmenting the        in a Peptide Map
                                                                                                                                   peptide through collisionally-induced
                                           9                   18                            normal                                dissociation, measuring the mass           UV Detection Trace at 214 nm
                                   7                                                         (asparagine)                          (m/z) of the resulting fragments of
                                                                   19                                        modified
       Normal                              10                                                                (isoaspartate)        the peptide40. In particular if an
     Hemoglobin                                                           22
                                                                                                                                   oligosaccharide is present, certain        Total MS Ion Current
                                                       14 17                                                                       “diagnostic ions” are produced by
                       4                              13 15                                                                        fragmentation which have m/z of 168
               2           5           8         11                                                                                and 366. By requesting a combined
                               6                                    20
                                                          16                                                                       trace of the ion currents produced by      Carbohydrate - specific ion trace (168 + 366)
                   3                                                     21

                                                                                                                                   these two ions, an “oligosaccharide-
                                       7                                      22
                                                                                                                                   specific” trace is produced (Figure
                                                                                                                                   34). This identifies which peptide
     “Sickle cell”                                                                                                                                                           Figure 34. Glycosylated peptides in a peptide
     hemoglobin                             10
                                                                    19                                                             the glycan (oligosaccharide) is
                                                        14                         Figure 33. RP-HPLC separation of peptide                                                  map can be identified by the monitoring of
                                                                                   fragments from tryptic digests of               attached to and the site of attachment    “carbohydrate diagnostic ions” by on-line
                           5                                   17
                               4                                                   normal bovine somatotropin (BST) with           can be identified.                        mass spectrometry. Column: VYDAC®
                                                                                   asparagine at position 99 and deamidated BST                                              218TP54 (C18, 5 µm 4.6 x 250 mm) Eluent:
                                                12 13
               2                                  11
                                                                                   with the asparagine replaced by isoaspartate.                                             0–40% ACN over 65 min, with 0.1% TFA, at
                                           8                                       Column: VYDAC® 218TP54 (C18, 5 µm,                                                        1.0 mL/min. Data from Reference 40.
                                   6                                               4.6 x 250 mm) Eluent: 0–15% ACN over 20
                   3                                          16        20 21
                                                                                   min, 15–21% ACN over 12 min, 21–48% ACN
                                                                                   over 27 min, 48–75% ACN over 4 min, all
Figure 32. Hemoglobin from normal and sickle                                       with 0.1% TFA, at 2.0 mL/min. Data from
cell subjects was tryptic digested and analyzed                                    Reference 14.
by RP-HPLC. Peptide 4 contains position six,
which is mutated from glutamic acid to valine
in sickle cell anemia subjects.Column:
VYDAC® 218TP51 (C18, 5 µm 1.0 x 250 mm)
Eluent: 0–40% ACN over 50 min, with 0.1%
TFA, at 50 mL/min. Data from Reference 26.

34                                                                                                                                                                                                                            35
Deamidation and Oxidation                        Methionine residues in proteins can               changes in reversed-phase elution.                            carbamylated protein (caused by the
Protein deamidation results in                   oxidize through metal catalysis,                  In Figure 37, the retention of an                             use of urea) elutes as a shoulder on
conversion of an asparagine to an                oxygen and light. Most proteins lose              insulin-like growth factor is shifted                         the native protein peak, oxidized
aspartic acid (or isoaspartic acid),             biological activity when oxidized.                when two adjacent disulfide bonds                             (methionine) protein elutes before the
thus adding an acidic group to the               Oxidation causes a protein to become              are switched37.                                               native form, the desGlyPro clipped
protein. At neutral pH the protein               more hydrophilic and oxidized                                                                                   protein elutes earlier than the native
therefore becomes somewhat more                  proteins elute before the native form             In Figure 38, RP-HPLC is used to                              protein and misfolded IGF elutes
hydrophilic. Separating proteins                 in RP-HPLC, as shown in Figure 36.                monitor a recombinant protein                                 earlier yet. Reversed-phase is able to
at neutral pH can identify protein               In this instance oxidized forms of a              production process. Aggregates of the                         identify and quantitate a number of
degradation deamidation products                 coagulation factor are well separated             protein elute later than the monomer,                         protein modifications25.
as illustrated in Figure 35. Human               from the native protein30. Because
growth hormone elutes after the                  reversed-phase HPLC is very
deamidation products because                     sensitive to the “hydrophobic foot”
they are less hydrophobic under these            of a protein, even slight changes in
conditions31.                                    protein conformation can result in

Detection of Deamidation                         Separation of Oxidized Forms of                   RP-HPLC of Insulin-Like                                       RP-HPLC of Modified Insulin-Like
by RP-HPLC                                       Coagulent Factor from Native Protein              Growth Factor                                                 Growth Factor

                                human                                      MetO
                                growth                                     (298)                                                                                       Oxidized          native IGF
                               hormone                        MetO                 MetO                        ASP
                                                                                                                                            53                           Met

                                                                                   (306)                       GLU          S     S   SER
                                                                                                               GLU          S     S

                                                            (298) and
                                                                                                               46                      51
                                                                                                                46              S

                                                                                                               CYS     CYS
                                                                                                                       CYS      PHE
                                                                                                                                PHE   ARG
                                                                                                                       48        49    50

                                                                                                                47      48       49    50

                                                                                                                  S     S
                                                                                                                        S                                          desGlyPro
            degradation                                       (306)                                     TYR
                                                                                                                      S S
                                                                                                                      S S


              products                                      dioxidized                                                                                                                                aggregate
                                                                                      Native rCF
Figure 35. The protein therapeutic recombinant                                                                                                                       IGF
                                                                                                                                                  10   20   30
human growth hormone deamidates
during storage. Deamidation is detected by                                                                                                                                     carbamylated
Reversed-Phase HPLC at slightly alkaline pH.     Figure 36. Separation of oxidized forms of        Figure 37. Insulin-like growth factor has two
Column: VYDAC® 214TP54 (C4, 5 µm, 4.6 x          coagulant factor VIIa from the native protein.    adjacent disulfide bonds which can “switch”.                  Figure 38. Insulin-like growth factor
250 mm) Eluent: 29% Isopropanol, 10 mM           Column: VYDAC® 214TP54 (C4, 5 µm 4.6 x            This changes the conformation of the protein,                 modified during production was analyzed by
Tris-HCl, pH 7.5. Data from Reference 31.        250 mm) Eluent: 37–47% ACN over 30 min,           which, in turn, affects reversed-phase elution.               RP-HPLC, revealing several modified forms.
                                                 with 0.1% TFA. Data from Reference 30.            Column: VYDAC® 214TP54 (C18, 5 µm, 4.6 x                      Column: VYDAC® 218TP54 (C18, 5 µm, 4.6 x
                                                                                                   250 mm) Eluent: 20–38% ACN:IPA (88:2) with                    250 mm) Eluent: A. 0.12% TFA in H2O. B.
                                                                                                   0.1% TFA. Data from Reference 37.                             0.1% TFA in acetonitrile. Gradient 27.5–28.5%
                                                                                                                                                                 B over 9 minutes, followed by 28.5–40% B over
                                                                                                                                                                 4 min., followed by 40–90% B over 90 minutes
                                                                                                                                                                 at 2 mL/min. Data from Reference 25.

36                                                                                                                                                                                                                37
Examples of                                     Histones                                     Viral proteins                           Protein characterization
Protein Separations                             Histones are a class of basic nuclear        Water insoluble poliovirus proteins      Proteins are routinely purified for
Proteins as large as 105 kD33 and               proteins that interact with DNA and          were chromatographed by RP-HPLC28.       sequencing and characterization
210 kD19 have been separated using              may regulate gene activity. They                                                      by RP-HPLC, for example the
RP-HPLC. Examples include:                      have been separated on C4 RP using           Ribosomal proteins                       purification of an acid soluble protein
                                                heptafluorobutyric acid (HFBA) as            30S and 50S ribosomal proteins have      from Clostridium perfringen spores36.
Protein subunits                                the ion-pairing agent20.                     been separated by RP-HPLC using
Eleven subunits of bovine cytochrome                                                         isopropanol as the organic modifier29.   Grain proteins
c oxidase ranging from MW 4962 to               Protein folding                                                                       Grain varieties cannot usually be
56,993 were separated and analyzed              The folding of insulin-like growth           Membrane proteins                        identified by physical appearance,
                                                factor was studied using RP-HPLC37.          A large, 105 kD, transmembrane           so methods based on RP-HPLC
by RP-HPLC21 (Figure 39). The inset
                                                                                             protein from Neurospora crassa was       profiles of soluble proteins have
in Figure 39 illustrates the use of             Oxidative refolding of reduced
                                                                                             dissolved in anhydrous TFA and           been developed to identify grain
shallow gradients to improve                    IGF-1 resulted in two major peaks
                                                                                             purified by RP-HPLC using a C4           varieties (Reference 24). RP-HPLC
resolution for critical proteins.               on RP-HPLC which had identical
                                                                                             column and a gradient from 60 to         profiles of alcohol-soluble
                                                linear sequences but different
                                                                                             100% ethanol containing 0.1% TFA.        endosperm proteins—glutelins—
                                                disulfide pairing.                                                                    were obtained on C4 columns and
                                                                                             These results demonstrate that a
                                                                                             crude membrane preparation can be        used to identify varieties of rice32.
                                                                                             directly applied to RP-HPLC
RP-HPLC Separation of Bovine Cytochrome c Oxidase Subunits
                                                                                             columns to isolate very hydrophobic,
                                                                                             integral proteins33.

                                                                                             Hemoglobin variants
                                                                                             A RP-HPLC method using a C4
                                                                                             column has been developed for the
                                                                                             separation of globin chains27. This
                                                                                             method has been used to study
                                                                                             hemoglobin variants in both animals
                                                                                             and humans. RP-HPLC has helped
                                                                                             to detect at least fourteen abnormal
                                                                                             hematological states in humans and
                                                                                             was used to study a silent mutant
                                                                                             involving substitution of threonine
                                                                                             for methionine34.

Figure 39. Eleven subunits of bovine cytochrome c oxidase ranging in MW from 4962 to
56,993 are separated by RP-HPLC. Column: VYDAC® 214TP104 (C4, 10 µm, 4.6 x 250 mm).
Eluent: 25–50% ACN over 50 min, then 50–85% ACN over 17.5 min; all with 0.1% TFA.
Flow rate: 1.0 mL/min. Inset: 35–45% ACN with 0.1% TFA over 40 min. Data from Reference 21

38                                                                                                                                                                            39
                               HPLC as a Tool to Purify and
                                     Isolate Polypeptides

R    P-HPLC is routinely used in
     the laboratory to purify
microgram to milligram quantities
                                         Selecting Separation Materials
                                         Process scale reversed-phase
                                                                                       silica from the same manufacturing
                                                                                       process as analytical size silica and
                                                                                       bonded by matched chemical
                                                                                                                                  the larger particle materials. The
                                                                                                                                  slight resolution advantage of
                                                                                                                                  small particles when overloading
of polypeptides for research             separation materials are available            procedures have nearly identical           columns does not compensate for
purposes. Columns of 50 mm i.d.          with nearly the same separation               protein and peptide selectivity            the higher cost and backpressure
and greater are used to purify up to     characteristics as analytical                 characteristics as analytical scale        and practical difficulties of working
gram quantities of recombinant           RP columns.                                   materials. The separation of several       with small particle materials in
proteins for use in clinical trials or                                                 proteins on columns of five, ten and       process applications.
for marketed products. Scaling up        VYDAC® 300 Å silica is produced               fifteen-to-twenty micrometer particle
separations in the laboratory usually    in particle sizes from less than five         size materials illustrates this (Figure
involves the use of standard solvents    to nearly thirty micrometers (Figure          41). Protein selectivity and retention     Separation of Proteins on RP-HPLC
and ion-pairing agents or buffers,       40). Physical sizing procedures are           are the same on all three materials.       Columns of Different Particle Size
choosing column dimensions with          used to isolate fractions of five and         The only difference between the
the necessary sample load                ten micrometers particles for use in          materials of different particle sizes is
characteristics (see Appendix A), and    analytical and laboratory scale               that peak widths are broader with the
optimization of the elution gradient.    preparative separations.                      larger particle materials, causing
                                                                                       some loss in resolution. Large particle      A
Scaling up laboratory separations        Silica fractions with larger average          materials—10-to-15, 15-to-20 or
to process scale involves not only       particle size and broader ranges are          20-to-30 µm—are normally used in
increasing the size of the column        separated for preparative and process         large scale purification because they
and the elution flow rate, but may       scale applications. Process-scale             are less costly than small particle
also involve a change in elution         reversed-phase materials based on             materials, they result in lower
solvents, use of different ion-pairing                                                 column back-pressure and they are
agents or buffers, and a change in                                                     easier to pack into large diameter           B
gradient conditions.                                                                   columns. In addition, in preparative
                                         Particle Size Distribution of                 chromatography, the column is nearly
In all cases, scaling up laboratory      VYDAC® TP-300 Å Pore Size Silica              always “overloaded” in order to
separations is simplified by the                                                       maximize sample throughput
availability of separation materials                                                   (see Page 43). When columns are
for large scale columns that have                                                      “overloaded”, large particle
nearly identical separation                                                            materials perform nearly as well as
characteristics as the columns that                                                    small particle materials, as illustrated
are routinely used in laboratory                                                       in Figure 42. Although peak width
scale separations.                                                                     and resolution are much better (2–3        Figure 41. Protein selectivity is the same on
                                                                                       times) with five or ten micrometer         RP materials of different particle sizes. The
                                                                                       materials than with larger particle        only difference between materials of different
                                                                                                                                  particle sizes is that peak width increases and
                                         Figure 40. Silica is produced in particle     materials at low sample loads, at          resolution decreases as particle size increases.
                                         sizes from less than five to nearly thirty    high sample loads using typical            Column materials: A. VYDAC® 214TP, 5 µm
                                         micrometers and particle size fractions are                                              B. VYDAC® 214TP, 10 µm C. VYDAC® 214TP,
                                         isolated for analytical, preparative and      “overload” conditions, peak widths         15–20 µm Mobile phase: 24–95 % ACN with
                                         process applications.                         are only about 20 to 50% greater on        0.1% TFA over 30 min at 1.5 mL/min.

40                                                                                                                                                                              41
Scaling-up Elution Conditions              partially increased while lengthening                                            Process-scale Purification: More           How Much Polypeptide
The three key factors to consider in       the gradient time. For instance,                                                 Than Five Grams of Peptide                 Can Be Purified in a Single
scaling up polypeptide separations are     a flow rate of 23 mL/min for                                                                                                Chromatographic Run?
the elution solvent, the ion-pairing       30 minutes would result in a gradient                                            Elution solvent
                                           volume of 690 mL. However, a                                                                                                When the purpose of the RP-HPLC
reagent or buffer, and the gradient                                                                                         The organic solvents commonly used in
                                           flow rate of 10 mL/min for 69 min                                                                                           separation is to collect purified
characteristics.                                                                                                            laboratory scale chromatography pose
                                           would give the same gradient                                                                                                polypeptide for further use, the
                                                                                                                            problems of cost, disposal or safety
                                           volume, hence the same gradient                                                                                             amount of sample that can be loaded
Elution solvent                                                                                                             in a process environment. Solvents
                                                                                                                                                                       onto a column while maintaining
Laboratory scale purifications             shape and sample resolution. In                                                  such as ethanol are more practical for
                                           either case the separation would be                                                                                         satisfactory purity is very important.
generally use the same organic                                                                                              process chromatography. Ethanol is
                                           comparable to that obtained on an                                                                                           The approach to preparative
modifier, namely acetonitrile, as                                                                                           relatively non-toxic, non-flammable
                                           analytical column. In practice the                                                                                          purifications is generally to load the
analytical chromatography.                                                                                                  when mixed with water, is available at
                                           gradient is often made more                                                                                                 maximum amount of polypeptide
                                                                                                                            low cost and is known and understood
                                           shallow—i.e., a smaller increase in                                                                                         that can be loaded while balancing
Ion-pairing agent or buffer                                                                                                 by regulatory agencies such as the
                                           organic modifier concentration per                                                                                          three important factors:
Laboratory scale purifications                                                                                              FDA. Ethanol is presently used in
generally use the same ion-pairing         unit time—to increase resolution,                                                large scale process purifications59.       Throughput
agents or buffers as analytical            particularly for the main polypeptide
                                                                                                                                                                       The amount of purified polypeptide
chromatography.                            to be collected.                                                                 Ion-pairing agent or buffer
                                                                                                                                                                       produced in a given time period. While
                                                                                                                            Ion pairing agents commonly used
                                                                                                                                                                       low sample loads yield maximum
Gradient characteristics                  Protein Loading Capacity of RP-HPLC                                               for analytical chromatography are
                                                                                                                                                                       resolution, only small quantities are
To retain the resolution obtained on      Materials of Different Particle Size                                              less practical for process scale
                                                                                                                                                                       purified per chromatographic run
an analytical column while increasing                                                                                       chromatography. Alternate ion-pairing
                                                                                                                                                                       and throughput is low.
column diameter, the gradient shape                                       160                                               agents or buffers useful for process
                                         Peak Width at Half Height (mm)

                                                                          140       20–30 micron
must be maintained by keeping the                                                                                           chromatography include acetic acid—        Purity
                                                                          120 15–20 micron
ratio of the gradient volume to the                                                                                         which also converts the polypeptide to     The purity of the polypeptide
column volume constant. For example,                                       80
                                                                                                                            the acetate form, useful in formulations   expressed in percent of total weight
a 22 mm diameter column has about                                          60                                               —and phosphate. Acetate is presently       of final purified product. Pure
23 times the volume of a 4.6 mm                                            40                            10 micron          used in the purification of several        polypeptides are obtained by
diameter column of the same length                                         20                 5 micron                      biotechnology derived polypeptide
                                                                                                                                                                       avoiding overlap with adjacent
(22 divided by 4.6, squared).                                                   0   200      400   600        800    1000   therapeutics61.                            peaks although this may limit the
A 1.0 mL/min gradient over 30                                                                                                                                          amount of sample that can be loaded
minutes on an analytical column has                                                                                         Gradient characteristics
                                                                                                                                                                       onto the column.
a volume of 30 mL. To transfer the        Figure 42. Although peak widths are much                                          The comments in the laboratory scale
                                          narrower with small particle materials at low                                     purification section regarding
method to a 22 mm column, the             sample loads, there is little difference in peak
gradient volume should be increased       widths at high loads, where the column is                                         scaling up elution gradients to larger
                                          “overloaded”. Column materials: VYDAC®                                            columns apply to process scale
23 times to 690 mL. The flow rate         214TP, 5 µm; VYDAC® 214TP, 10 µm; VYDAC®
can be increased 23 times while           214TP, 15–20 µm; VYDAC® 214TP, 20–30 µm                                           purifications (see above). Very
maintaining the gradient time             Eluent: 24–95 % ACN in 0.1% aqueous                                               shallow gradients in the region
                                          TFA over 30 min at 1.5 mL/min; Protein:
constant or the flow rate can be          ribonuclease.                                                                     where the polypeptide of interest
                                                                                                                            elutes are common.

42                                                                                                                                                                                                         43
Yield                                        Practical Loading Capacity                                     In Figure 44, injections of 25, 100,       There are many examples in the
The percent of polypeptide purified          Preparative separations require                                200, 500 and 1,000 micrograms of           literature of practical purification
as a percent of the total amount of          maximizing throughput by balancing                             ribonuclease and lysozyme illustrate       of polypeptides at high loading
polypeptide present in the original          resolution, yield and purity. Often                            the effect on resolution of increasing     levels46–50. In one case 1.2 grams of
sample. Maximizing resolution                improving yield comes at a cost of                             peak width resulting from increasing       a synthetic peptide mixture were
enables recovery of most of the              reduced purity or reduced throughput.                          sample loads. At 25 and 100 µg             purified on a 5 x 30 cm column46.
loaded polypeptide while removing            In practice this generally requires                            injections—in the region of optimum        In a personal communication it was
impurities. If resolution is poor then       “overloading” the column—that is,                              resolution—resolution between              reported that 5 grams of synthetic
only the center of a peak is collected,      injecting polypeptide samples greater                          ribonuclease and the small impurity        peptide were purified on a 5 x 25 cm
reducing yield.                              than the sample capacity defined by                            preceding it remains constant (Figure      column in two steps.
                                             optimum resolution. As the sample                              44A, B). Resolution begins to decrease
There are three measures of sample           load is increased, polypeptide peak                            between ribonuclease and the impurity
capacity on a RP-HPLC column:                widths increase (Figures 43 and 44),                           above 100 µg—the “overload” point.
■ the loading capacity with                  however peak shape remains reasonably                          The 200 µg load shows a definite
  optimum resolution;                        symmetrical. This often allows the                             increase in peak width and consequent      Effect of Sample Load on Protein
■ the practical sample loading               loading of samples 10 to 50 times the                          loss of resolution (Figure 44C). At        Peak Shape and Resolution
  capacity;                                  nominal sample capacity while still                            500 mg there is considerable loss in
                                                                                                            resolution (Figure 44D) and at 1,000 µg           ribonuclease        lysosyme
■ and, the maximum amount of                 retaining acceptable resolution.
  polypeptide the column will bind.                                                                         the impurity peak completely merges
                                                                                                            with the ribonuclease peak (Figure 44E).       impurity              impurity

Sample Loading Capacity
                                                                                                            Resolution between lysozyme and the
with Optimum Resolution                     Sample Loading Curve for                                        preceding impurity peaks remains
                                            Ribonuclease on Analytical Column                               constant to about 200 µg, after which
In chromatography the loading
limit of a column is normally                               160                                             resolution is slowly lost. At 500 µg
defined as the maximum amount                               140                                             (Figure 44D) the impurity peaks
                                                            120                                             appear only as shoulders on the
of analyte that can be
                                          Peak Width (mm)

                                                            100                                             lysozyme peak and by 1,000 µg
chromatographed with no more
than a 10% increase in peak width.                                             Practical loading range      (Figure 44E) the impurity peaks have
                                                            60                 (column is overloaded)       completely merged with the lysozyme
Peak width and resolution remain                                                                            peak. Resolution between the protein
                                                            20         Overload Point
constant up to the “overload” point                          0
                                                                                                            and impurity peak can be improved
which, for analytical (4.6 mm diameter)                           0   400      800       1200        1600   by running a more shallow gradient.
columns, is about 100 to 200 µg for
most polypeptides (Figure 43).              Figure 43. Peak width is constant with sample                   Since resolution between the two, well
                                            loads up to 200 µg. Above 200 µg—the                            separated, major peaks—ribonuclease        Figure 44. A. 25 µg each protein B. 100 µg
Loading samples greater than this           “overload” point—the peak width gradually                                                                  each protein C. 200 µg each protein D. 500 µg
amount results in broadened peaks           increases. The practical loading region for                     and lysozyme—remains good even at          each protein E. 1000 µg each protein Column:
                                            ribonuclease is 200 to 5000 µg. Column:                         the 1,000 µg sample load and peak          VYDAC® 214TP54 (C4, 5 µm, 4.6 x 250 mm)
and decreased resolution.                   VYDAC® 214TP54 (C4, 5 µm, 4.6 x 250 mm)                                                                    Eluent: 25–50% ACN in 0.1% TFA over 25
                                            Eluent: 24–95% ACN with 0.1% TFA over                           shape is not seriously degraded, very      minutes at 1.5 mL/min. Sample: ribonuclease
                                            30 minutes Sample: ribonuclease.                                high sample loads are possible for         and lysozyme.
                                                                                                            well separated peaks.
44                                                                                                                                                                                                45
Maximum Polypeptide                       Use shallow gradients                        Biological Activity and                            Small peptides and very stable proteins
Binding Capacity                          Resolution between closely eluting           Reversed-Phase HPLC                                are less likely to lose biological
The maximum binding capacity of           polypeptides may be improved by                                                                 activity than large enzymes. Some
                                          using a more shallow gradient slope.         Biological activity of proteins                    specific points to keep in mind are:
a polypeptide on a reversed-phase                                                      depends on tertiary structure
column depends on the size and            This is usually done by lengthening
                                          the gradient time. Suggestion: Use           and permanent disruption of                        Protein denaturation
characteristics of the polypeptide.                                                    tertiary structure eliminates
                                          longer elution times and shallow                                                                Denaturation of proteins on
Small peptides have binding                                                            biological activity.
                                          gradients to obtain maximum                                                                     hydrophobic surfaces is kinetically
capacities of about 10 mg of peptide
                                          resolution for closely eluting peaks.                                                           slow. Reducing the residence time of
per gram of separation material—                                                       RP-HPLC may disrupt protein                        the protein in the column generally
25 mg on a 4.6 x 250 mm column.                                                        tertiary structure because of the
                                          Increase the column volume                                                                      reduces the loss of biological activity.
Proteins have slightly higher binding                                                  hydrophobic solvents used for elution
                                          Since sample capacity is a function
capacities between 10 and 20 mg                                                        or because of the interaction of the               Solvent effects
                                          of column volume, either column
of protein per gram of separation                                                      protein with the hydrophobic surface of            Some solvents are less likely to
                                          diameter or column length can be
material, depending on the ratio of                                                    the material. The amount of biological             cause a loss of biological activity
                                          increased for increased sample load. It
the area of the hydrophobic foot to                                                    activity lost depends on the stability of          than others. Isopropanol is the best
                                          is the volume of the column that is
the total molecular weight.                                                            the protein and on the elution conditions          solvent for retaining biological
                                          important, not the diameter or the length.
                                                                                       used. The loss of biological activity              activity. Ethanol and methanol are
Although sample loads near the
                                          Use large particle adsorbents                can be minimized by proper                         slightly worse and acetonitrile
maximum binding capacity of a                                                          post-chromatographic treatment.                    causes the greatest loss of
                                          When columns are “overloaded”,
column provide little resolution,                                                                                                         biological activity.
                                          particle size becomes less significant
they are useful for simple, fast
                                          in obtaining resolution (Figure 42).         HIV Protease Biological Activity
desalting of polypeptide samples.                                                                                                         Stabilizing factors
                                          Small particle materials give only
                                          slightly better resolution than large                                                           Stabilizing factors, such as
Ways to Optimize                          particle materials under “overload”           After lyophilization, dissolve residue at         enzyme cofactors, added to the
Throughput and Resolution                 conditions and the higher cost, higher        5–15 mg/mL in 50 mM sodium acetate, pH 5.5,       chromatographic eluent, may
                                                                                        containing 8 M urea, 1 mM EDTA and                stabilize proteins and reduce the
                                          back-pressure and practical difficulties      2.5 mM dithiothreitol.
Sample concentration                      of column preparation with small                                                                loss of biological activity.
Resolution between closely eluting        particle materials make them impractical      Refolding
polypeptides may be affected by           for most preparative separations.             Dilute with 9 volumes of 50 mM acetate, pH        The most important factor in
sample concentration. Dilute samples                                                    5.5, containing 1 mM EDTA and 2.5 mM              maintaining or regaining biological
                                                                                        dithiothreitol, 10% glycerol, 5% ethylene
appear to spread out over the column      Effective loading of the sample               glycol and 0.2% Non-idet P-40 at 4˚ C.
                                                                                                                                          activity is post-column sample
surface better than concentrated          Load the sample in a solvent that will                                                          treatment. Dissolution of a collected
samples and this results in somewhat      not interfere with adsorption of the          Result                                            protein in a stabilizing buffer often
better resolution. Recommendation:        polypeptide. This generaly means              Specific activity = 1.0 + -0.1 mmol substrate     allows the protein to re-fold. An
                                                                                        hydrolyzed per minute per mg of protein—
Use dilute samples to improve             keeping the organic content well                                                                example is HIV protease (Figure 45)56.
                                                                                        compared to specific activity of 1.2 for enzyme
resolution and sample loading capacity.   below that required to elute the              expressed in E. coli.
                                          polypeptide from the column. Some
                                          solvent in the sample, however,              Figure 45. Procedure used to regain biological
                                                                                       activity of HIV protease after reversed-phase
                                          improves sample loading.                     chromatography (Reference 56).

46                                                                                                                                                                               47
Examples of Biological                    Use of Reversed-Phase                    Example of Large                                    6                      Analysis of collected fractions for
Activity after RP-HPLC                    HPLC in the Purification                 Scale Purifications                                                        purity and yield;
                                          of Commercial                                                                                7                      Combining the optimum fractions
Trypsin                                   Polypeptide Therapeutics                 Laboratory-scale purification                                              for a final yield of 128 milligrams
Reversed phase chromatography has         Perhaps the most compelling              Several examples of the purification                                       of GnRH antagonist at a purity of
been used to purify trypsin for use       evidence that biological activity        of synthetic peptides by RP-HPLC                                           99.7%.
in protein digestion57.                   is not inevitably lost during            have appeared in the literature46–50. In
                                          reversed-phase chromatography is         one case46 128 mg of gonadotropin                   Removal of Virus Particles
Polio virus proteins                      the fact that several commercial         releasing hormone (GnRH) antagonist                 During Reversed-Phase HPLC
Polio virus proteins purified by          bio-therapeutics use reversed-phase      was purified from 1.2 grams of                      Purification
reversed phase chromatography were        chromatography in the purification       synthesis mixture in two RP-HPLC
able to induce production of specific                                                                                                  One of the benfits of incorporating
                                          of the marketed product.                 purification steps (Figure 46). The                 a reversed-phase chromatography
antibodies in rabbits, indicating a       ■ Erythropoetin may be                   procedure involved (see Reference 46
retention of biological activity23.                                                                                                    separation step into a process to
                                             purified using reversed-phase         for details):                                       produce large quantities of a
                                             chromatography as an integral         1 Establishing elution conditions
Pollen allergens                                                                                                                       therapeutic protein is the removal
                                             part of the purification process59.      with triethylammonium phosphate                  or clearance of virus from the
The main protein allergen of
                                          ■ Leukine, a marketed polypeptide           and acetonitrile on a five                       protein “soup”.
Parietaria judaica retained IgE-binding
                                             therapeutic, uses reversed-phase         micrometer, 4.6 x 250 mm, column;
activity even after RP-HPLC
                                             HPLC as an integral part of its       2 Loading the synthetic peptide onto
purification because it eluted at
                                             purification procedure60, 61.            a 5 x 30 cm column packed with
low acetonitrile concentration58.                                                                                             Purification of Synthetic Peptide
                                          ■ Human recombinant insulin                 15–20 µm adsorbent comparable to
HIV protease                                 purification uses reversed-phase         the five micron material in
                                                                                      the column in Step One and                                                           GnRH
HIV protease regained most of                chromatography in its production62.                                                                                           antagonist

                                                                                                                              Absorbance Units (280 nm)
its biological activity after                                                         elution with acetonitrile and
reversed-phase chromatography and                                                     triethylammonium phosphate;
                                          While the conditions of
post chromatographic treatment to                                                  3 Analysis of collected fractions for
                                          reversed-phase chromatography
allow refolding (Figure 45)56.            may cause some loss of tertiary             purity and yield and combining
                                          structure and biological activity,          the best fractions for desalting
                                          in most cases this loss of biological       and final purification;
                                          activity may be moderated or             4 Dilution and re-injection on the

                                          eliminated by use of optimum                same column;
                                                                                                                                                          0                 Minutes            60
                                          chromatographic conditions or by         5 Elution using acetonitrile and
                                          post-chromatographic treatment.             TFA to remove the non-volatile          Figure 46. Purification of 128 mg of a synthetic
                                                                                                                              peptide, GnRH antagonist 1.2 grams of
                                                                                      phosphate salt and improve              synthesis mixture were loaded onto a 5 x 30 cm
                                                                                      resolution further;                     column packed with VYDAC® 218TPB1520
                                                                                                                              (C18, 15–20 µm) and eluted with a gradient
                                                                                                                              of acetonitrile in water containing
                                                                                                                              triethylammonium phosphate.

48                                                                                                                                                                                              49
                               Viral Inactivation During
                       Reversed-Phase HPLC Purification

                                                                                                        Viral inactivation by ethanol and chromatographic separation
R    eversed-phase HPLC usually
     reduces or eliminates viral
activity in protein preparations,
                                                  The data in the table below
                                                  illustrates that some viruses are
                                                  highly inactivated in ethanol
                                                                                                        Log10 infectivity reduction by exposure to ethanol for 30 minutes (1st Row)
                                                                                                        or a combination of ethanol and chromatographic separation (2nd Row).
making it a valuable step in                      (Xenotropic Murie Leukemia Virus
recombinant protein purification.                 and Pseudorabies Virus) while others                                              XmuLV         MVM         Adeno 5         PRV
Viral inactivation occurs through                 (Minute Virus of Mice and Human                        Ethanol exposure          >4.9±.13       .4±.2       0.1±.44       >4.6±.08
two mechanisms. First, exposure to                Adenovirus type 5) are less strongly                   RP-HPLC in ethanol        >5.9           2.9±.4      2.4±.44       >5.6±.32
ethanol inactivates many viruses.                 inactivated. The combination of
Second, viruses can be separated                  ethanol and chromatographic
from protein in the chromatographic               separation, however, significantly                     XMuLV–Xenotropic Murine Leukemia Virus
step (see Figure 47).                             reduces the infectivity level of all                   MVM–Minute Virus of Mice
                                                  four viruses.                                          Adeno5–Human adenovirus type 5
                                                                                                         PRV–Pseudorabies Virus
Separation of Xenotropic Murine Leukemia Virus

                                                                       Ethanol Gradient


      100                                                                    XMuLV Virus
                                                                            was below the
                                       XMuLV Virus                        limit of detection
                                       was detected                          in this peak
                                        in this peak

            0            50                    100                  150                        200 mL

Figure 47. Separation of Xenotropic Murine Leukemia Virus (XMuLV) from target protein during
preparative HPLC. Column: VYDAC® C4, 20-30 mm Elution: Ethanol gradient
Data courtesy of Holly Harker and Marcus Luscher, Amgen, Boulder, Colorado

50                                                                                                                                                                                    51
                 Appendix A: Column Characteristics                                                  Appendix B: The Care and Maintenance
                                                                                                                of Reversed-Phase Columns

                                       Flow Rate
                                                                         Maximum Practical
                                                                           Sample Load
                                                                                             R   eversed-phase HPLC columns,
                                                                                                 if properly cared for, may give
                                                                                             good performance for over a thousand
                                                                                                                                        Column Storage
                                                                                                                                        RP-HPLC columns can be stored in
                       (mm)                (1)               (2)               (3)                                                      organic solvent and water. For long
                                                                                             sample injections, depending on sample     term storage the ion-pairing agent or
Capillary                0.075          0.25 µL/min          0.05 µg                         preparation and elution conditions.        buffer should be rinsed from the
                         0.15              1 µL/min           0.2 µg                         Although the following ideas are           column and the organic content
                         0.30              5 µL/min             1 µg                         specifically applicable to VYDAC®          should be at least 50%.
                         0.50             10 µL/min             2 µg                         RP-HPLC columns, they also apply
                                                                                             to most other columns.
                                                                                                                                        Chemical Stability
Microbore                1.0         25–50 µL/min 0.05–10 µg                                                                            Reversed-phase HPLC columns are
                                                                                             Column Protection
                                                                                                                                        stable in all common organic solvents
                                                                                              Column lifetime can be extended by        including acetonitrile, ethanol,
Narrowbore               2.1      100–300 µL/min          0.2–50 µg                          filtering all solvents and samples         isopropanol and dichloromethane.
                                                                                             and using an eluent filter and a guard     When switching solvents it is
                                                                                             column. We recommend using an              important to only use mutually
                                                                                             eluent filter between the solvent          miscible solvents in sequence.
Analytical               4.6        0.5–1.5 mL/min         1–200 µg             10 mg        delivery system and the injector to        Silica-based RP-HPLC columns
                                                                                             trap debris from the solvents, pumps or    are stable up to pH 6.5 to 7 and are
                                                                                             mixing chamber. We also recommend          not harmed by common protein
Semi-preparative         10         2.5–7.5 mL/min          1,000 µg            50 mg        using a guard column between the           detergents such as sodium
                                                                                             injector and the column if samples         dodecylsulfate (SDS).
                                                                                             contain insoluble components or
Preparative              22          10–30 mL/min                5 mg           200 mg       compounds that strongly adsorb to
                                                                                                                                        Pressure and
                                                                                             the material.
                                                                                                                                        Temperature Limits
                                                                                             Column Conditioning                        RP-HPLC columns are generally
Process                   50       50–100 mL/min               25 mg            1,000 mg                                                stable to 60˚C and up to 5,000 psi
                         100      150–300 mL/min              125 mg            5,000 mg     Because of the nature of the
                                                                                                                                        (335 bar) back-pressure. Typical
                                                                                             reversed-phase surface, column
                                                                                                                                        back-pressures for RP-HPLC
                                                                                             performance (resolution, retention)
                                                                                                                                        columns are shown in Figure B-1.
                                                                                             may change slightly during the first few
                                                                                             injections of proteins. A column can
                                                                                             be conditioned by repeated injections
Figure A-1.                                                                                  of the protein until the column
1. Actual flow rates can be a factor of two higher or lower depending on the method.
                                                                                             characteristics remain constant
2. Sample Capacity is the quantity of polypeptide that can be loaded onto the column         (requires injection of about 100 µg of
   without reducing resolution.
                                                                                             protein) or by injection of 100 µg of
3. Maximum Practical Sample Load is approximately the maximum quantity of sample             a commonly available protein, such as
   that can be purified with reasonable yield and purity on the column.                      ribonuclease, followed by running an
                                                                                             acetonitrile/0.1% TFA gradient.

52                                                                                                                                                                           53
RP-HPLC Column                         If the column back-pressure is high,    Protein contamination                     or chloroform. When changing
Trouble-Shooting                       most HPLC columns can be                If the loss in column performance         from water to chloroform or
                                       reversed and rinsed to try to flush     appears to be due to adsorbed protein     dichloromethane or back again it is
The performance of RP-HPLC
                                       contaminants from the inlet frit.       we recommend rinsing the column           important to rinse the column with
columns may deteriorate for a
                                       Begin the reverse rinse at a low        with a mixture of one part 0.1 N          a mutually miscible, intermediate
number of reasons including use of
                                       flow rate—10 to 20% of normal—          nitric acid and four parts isopropanol.   solvent such as isopropanol or
improper eluents, such as high pH,
                                       or 10–15 minutes and then increase      Rinsing at a low flow rate—20% of         acetone between the two less
contamination by strongly adsorbed
                                       to the normal flow rate.                normal—overnight is most effective.       miscible solvents.
sample constituents, insoluble
materials from the solvent or sample   Contaminated column                     Lipids or other very                      Spurious–"ghost"–peaks
or simply age or extensive use. Here   Wash the column either with 10–20       hydrophobic contaminants                  Unexpected peaks sometimes appear
are some suggestions to restore the    column volumes of a strong eluent       If lipids or very hydrophobic small       in HPLC chromatograms. These
performance of a RP-HPLC column.       or run 2–3 ‘blank’ gradients (without   molecules are causing the change in       are usually caused by contaminants
                                       sample injection) to remove less        column performance, we recommend          in the solvents used. Hydrophobic
High back-pressure
                                       strongly adsorbed contaminants.         rinsing the column with several           contaminants in Solvent
Disconnect the column from the
injector and run the pumps to ensure                                           column volumes of dichloromethane         A-contaminants may be present in
that the back-pressure is due to the                                                                                     the water or the ion-pairing agent
column and not the HPLC system.                                                                                          or buffer—accumulate on the
                                                                                                                         column during equilibration and at
                                                                                                                         low solvent concentrations and elute
Typical Back-Pressures of RP-HPLC Columns                                      Evidence of Solvent Contaminants          as “ghost” peaks during the gradient.
                                                                               as Source of Ghost Peaks                  This can be easily diagnosed by
                                                                                                                         making two gradient runs, the first
     Column Size          Flow Rate              Typical Back-pressure
                                                                                                                         with a relatively long equilibration
        (mm)              (mL/min)             (with 50:50 ACN:Water)
                                                                                                                         time–30 minutes—and the second
      2.1 x 250              0.20                   1000 –1800 psi
                                                                                                                         with a short equilibration time—
      4.6 x 250              1.0                    1000 –1800 psi
                                                                                                                         10 minutes (example, Figure B-2).
      4.6 x 150              1.0                     600 –1200 psi
                                                                                                                         The short equilibration will have
       10 x 250              5.0                    1000 –1800 psi
                                                                                                                         smaller peaks than the long
      4.6 x 250              1.0                     500 –1000 psi
                                                                                                                         equilibration if the “ghost peaks”
       10 x 250              5.0                     500 –1000 psi
                                                                                                                         are due to contaminants in the “A”
       22 x 250             25.0                     500 –1000 psi
                                                                               Figure B-2.                               solvent because less contaminants
Figure B-1.                                                                                                              will adsorb onto the column with the
                                                                                                                         short equilibration. To correct the
                                                                                                                         problem use higher purity or fresh
                                                                                                                         water or ion-pairing agent or buffer.

54                                                                                                                                                             55
                    Appendix C: The Effect of Surfactants
                       On Reversed-Phase Separations

P   olypeptide samples sometimes
    contain surfactants. To determine
the effect of surfactants on RP-HPLC
                                                The separation on a C18 column of
                                                the protein sample with SDS was
                                                much worse (Figure C-1B) than the
                                                                                                Results on a C4 column were slightly
                                                                                                better than those obtained on the
                                                                                                C18 column (Figure C-2). The
                                                                                                                                                   small amounts of SDS affected the
                                                                                                                                                   digest separation and higher amounts
                                                                                                                                                   virtually destroyed resolution
polypeptide separations and on the              separation of the same sample without           presence of SDS in the protein                     (Figure C-3).
columns themselves, five proteins—              SDS (Figure C-1A). Subsequent                   sample affected the chromatography
ribonuclease, insulin, lysozyme,                chromatography of the sample without            (Figure C-2B), however the effect                  Although surfactants usually degrade
myoglobin and ovalbumin—were                    SDS, however, showed no deterioration           was less than on the C18 column                    RP-HPLC peptide separations, the use
chromatographed with and without                (Figure C-1C), confirming that the              (compare with Figure C-1). The SDS                 of octylglucoside, urea and guanidine
0.5% sodium dodecyl sulphate (SDS)              SDS was removed in the gradient                 was removed in the gradient and did                in the eluent have produced beneficial
in the sample (Figures C-1, C-2).               and did not harm the column or                  not affect the column or subsequent                results in some cases54, 55.
                                                affect subsequent separations.                  separations (Figure C-2C).
                                                                                                                                                   Surfactants usually degrade RP-HPLC
                                                                                                Peptide separations are seriously                  polypeptide separations, however
Effect of Surfactants on                        Effect of Surfactants on                        affected by the presence of surfactant.            they do not harm the column. If
C18 RP-HPLC of Polypeptides                     C4 RP-HPLC of Polypeptides                      Even trace amounts of SDS in a                     surfactants are present in the
                                                                                                peptide sample or protein digest                   sample, we recommend using a
     A. Without SDS                                 A. Without SDS
                                                                                                can reduce separation efficiency                   C4 reversed-phase column or
                                                                                                significantly12, 53. Peptide maps of a             removing the surfactant prior
                                                                                                protein digest containing small                    to chromatography.
                                                                                                amounts of SDS showed that even

                                                                                                Effect of Surfactants on Peptide Map

                                                                                                          A. No SDS
     B. With 0.5% SDS                               B. With 0.5% SDS

                                                                                                          B. 0.001% SDS

     C. After SDS                                   C. After SDS
                                                                                                          C. 0.01% SDS

                                                                                                          D. 0.1% SDS

Figure C-1. Surfactants affect chromatography   Figure C-2. Surfactant affects chromatography
(B) but do not harm column or subsequent        (B) but does not harm column or subsequent
separations (C). Column: VYDAC® 218TP54.        separations (C). Column: VYDAC® 214TP54         Figure C-3. The presence of even trace amounts of SDS causes a loss in resolution in a peptide
Eluent: 24–95% ACN in 0.1% TFA over             Eluent: 24–95% ACN in 0.1% TFA over 30 min      map. Column: VYDAC® 218TP52 (Narrowbore). Eluent: 2–80% ACN with 0.06% TFA over 120
30 min at 1.5 mL/min Sample: ribonuclease,      at 1.5 mL/min Sample: ribonuclease, insulin,    min at 0.25 mL/min. Sample: tryptic digest of carboxymethylated transferrin Data courtesy of K.
insulin, lysozyme, myoglobin and ovalbumin.     lysozyme, myoglobin and ovalbumin.              Stone and K. Williams. Ref. 12.

56                                                                                                                                                                                                57
Appendix D: Ion Exchange Chromatography
         Orthogonal Analytical Techniques

R    eversed-phase chromatography
     separates polypeptides on the
basis of hydrophobicity; ion-exchange
                                                  reversed-phase and cation exchange
                                                  HPLC illustrates the complementary
                                                  selectivity of the two techniques
                                                                                             The Benefits of Ion-Exchange
                                                                                                                                           The Benefits of Reversed-Phase
                                                                                             ■ Relatively high sample loading              ■ A high degree of selectivity based
chromatography separates on the                   (Figure D-1). On the cation exchange
basis of charge. These complementary              column singly-charged oxytocin               capacity compared to reversed-                on differences in hydrophobicity
separation techniques offer synergistic           elutes early, followed by the three          phase.                                        or molecular conformation.
capabilities in the analysis and                  doubly-charged peptides—neurotensin,       ■ Resistance to strong reagents such          ■ Use of volatile buffers or
purification of proteins and peptides             angiotensin II and bradykinin.               as 0.1 M NaOH, 0.1 M acid or                  ion-pairing agents.
and are often used together because               Angiotensin I with four charges              6 M guanidine because of the                ■ Freedom from interferences by
of the different separation                       elutes last. On reversed-phase the           polymeric matrix. Relatively crude            salt or buffers from ion exchange.
mechanisms. In series they offer                  peptides elute in the order of oxytocin,     solutions can be loaded onto
better purification than can be                   bradykinin, angiotensin I, neurotensin       ion-exchange columns because                Ion-exchange chromatography is
achieved with either one alone; in                and angiotensin II. The complementary        adsorbed matrix components can              normally used first, followed by
parallel they offer mutual confirmation           selectivities provide two dimensional        be removed with strong reagents.            reversed-phase chromatography
of analytical results. Comparison of              resolving power.                           ■ Addition of urea, acetonitrile or           (Figure D-2). Crude samples can be
the separation of several peptides by                                                          non-ionic detergents to break-up            loaded onto a polymer-based ion
                                                                                               complexes.                                  exchange column without damaging
                                                                                             ■ Optimization of elution selectivity         the column; ion-exchange has a high
                                                                                               by adjustment of pH.                        loading capacity to accomodate
                                                                                                                                           complex samples; and chaotropes
                                                                                             High Performance Reversed-Phase               can be added to the sample to break
Comparison of High Performance Reversed-Phase and High Performance
Ion-Exchange Chromatography in the Separation of Peptides                                    and Ion-Exchange Chromatography               up protein complexes. The partially
                                                                                             Used in Series to Remove Impurities           purified polypeptide, containing salts
                                                                                             in Lysozyme                                   and buffers from the ion exchange
                 Reversed-Phase (218TP54)         Cation Exchange (400VHP575)                                                              separation, can then be loaded onto a
                                                                          5                                                                reversed-phase column. The salts are
                                         5                                                               Cation
                                                                                                         Exchange                          not retained and do not harm the
                                 3                                                                                                         reversed-phase column. Purification
                                                                  3                                       lysosome peak
                                                                                                          from IEX onto RP                 based on hydrophobicity or
                         1                                            2                                                                    conformation then takes place
                                     4                                                                         impurity on RP
                                                       1      4                                                                            and the collected sample elutes
                                                                                                                                           in a volatile solution, ready for
                                                                                                         impurity on RP      Reversed-
                                                                                                                             Phase         final preparation.

             0                           25 min    0                          40 min
                                                                                             Figure D-2. Strong Cation Exchange Column:
                                                                                             VYDAC® 400VHP575, Cation exchange, 5 µm,
                                                                                             7.5 x 50 mm Eluent: 10 mM phosphate, pH
Figure D-1. Reversed-Phase Column: VYDAC® 218TP54, C18, 5 µm, 4.6 x 250 mm Eluent:           6.5/25% ACN; gradient from 0–0.1 M NaCl in
15–30% ACN in 0.1% TFA over 30 minutes at 1.0 mL/min Strong Cation Exchange Column:          25 min at 1.0 mL/min Reversed-Phase Column:
VYDAC® 400VHP575, Cation exchange, 5 µm, 7.5 x 50 mm Eluent: 10 mM phosphate,                VYDAC® 214TP54, C4, 5 µm, 4.6 x 250 mm
pH 2.7/25% ACN; gradient from 0-0.1 M NaCl in 20 min at 1.0 mL/min Sample: 1. oxytocin       Eluent: 10–35% ACN in 0.1% TFA, 50 minutes
2. bradykinin 3. angiotensin II 4. neurotensin 5. angiotensin I.                             at 1.0 mL/min Sample: Lysozyme.

58                                                                                                                                                                             59
  Appendix E: The Effect of System Hardware
 on Reversed-Phase Polypeptide Separations

R    eversed-phase HPLC peptide
     separations are sensitive to the
shape of the gradient and hence, to the
                                           Figure E-2 shows the effect that the
                                           gradient response delay has on
                                           narrowbore columns run at low flow
                                                                                             Calculation of Desorbing
                                                                                             Solvent Concentration
                                                                                                                                                  the solvent concentration given by
                                                                                                                                                  the system when the polypeptide
                                                                                                                                                  elutes is higher than the actual
                                                                                             Because of internal volume in the
characteristics of the system hardware     rates. The peptide separation on a                                                                     solvent concentration that desorbs
                                                                                             flow system—tubing, mixing
being used. Pumps and gradient formers     narrowbore HPLC column at 0.20                                                                         and elutes the polypeptide.
                                                                                             chamber, column void volume, etc—
can affect peptide separations in subtle   mL/min (Figure E-2B) is compared
ways, especially at low flow rates.        with the separation on an analytical
                                           column at 1.0 mL/min (Figure E-2A)                To calculate the solvent concentration that desorbs the polypeptide (CD):
Gradient Systems and                       using the same HPLC system and
                                                                                               Enter the retention time of the peak                              Example         33 min
Response Delay Time                        programmed gradient. The 10 minute
                                           gradient response delay distorts the                Subtract the retention time of the injection peak                 Example         2.5 min
To experimentally examine the actual                                                           Subtract the gradient response delay time                         Example         2 min
                                           peptide separation (Figure E-2B).
gradient produced by an HPLC system,
                                           Delaying sample injection and data                  And subtract any initial gradient hold time                       Example         5 min
replace the column with a short
                                           collection ten minutes after starting
length of small diameter tubing and                                                            Equals corrected elution time (ETcorr)                            Example         23.5 min
                                           the gradient cancels the effect of
run a 30 minute gradient at 1.0                                                                ETcorr = Tretention - Tvoid - Tgradient Delay - THold
                                           the gradient response delay and the
mL/min from water to 0.3% acetone
                                           resulting narrowbore separation
(for absorbance) in water and monitor
                                           (Figure E-2C) is similar to the                   The solvent concentration (CD) at the corrected elution time is:
at 254 nm. The UV profile represents
                                           analytical separation (Figure E-2A).               CD = CS + (ETcorr/Tg)(CE - CS); where
the gradient actually generated by the
                                                                                                 CS = solvent concentration at start of gradient
system hardware (Figure E-1). The
                                                                                                 CE = solvent concentration at end of gradient
gradient UV profile is used to:
                                                                                                 Tg = time duration of gradient
■ Check on system reproducibility;
■ Determine system performance at
   the extremes of the gradient;            Gradient Hardware
                                                                                             Effect of System Hardware on Gradient Shape in Narrowbore HPLC
■ Calculate the gradient response           System Evaluation
   delay—the time from when the
   controller or computer signals a
   change in the gradient to when this
   change actually reaches the column.
   In the example (Figure E-1) the
   gradient delay is about 3 minutes
   (3 mL at 1 mL/min) calculated                                                                          C

   from when the run beguns to
   where the profile begins to rise.
                                           Figure E-1. The gradient generated by the         Figure E-2. The system hardware gradient delay distorts the gradient shape at low flow rates and
   Hardware systems that differ in         system hardware is visualized by the profile of   affects the peptide separation (B). Delaying sample injection to adjust for the gradient delay
   gradient response delay times will      a gradient increasing in acetone. Column:         produces similar separation results (C) as obtained with an analytical column (A). Column: A.
                                           Replaced by low-volume tubing. Gradient:          VYDAC® 218TP54 (C18, 5 µm, 4.6 x 250 mm) B and C. VYDAC® 218TP52 (C18, 5 µm, 2.1 x
   produce different gradient shapes,      0–0.3% acetone in water over 30 min at 1.0        250 mm) Eluent: 15–30% ACN in 30 min with 0.1% TFA. Flow rate: A. 1.0 mL/min B and
   which may result in apparent            mL/min. Detection: UV at 254 nm.                  C. 0.20 mL/min Peptides: 1. bradykinin 2. oxytocin 3. angiotensin II 4. neurotensin 5. angiotensin I
                                                                                             Note: In C, sample injection and data collection were delayed 10 min after initiating the gradient.
   differences in peptide selectivity.

60                                                                                                                                                                                              61
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     Growth Factor, R.F. Burgoyne, M.F. Charette and T. Kierstead, Journal of          Chymotrypsin by Reverse-Phase High-Performance Liquid
     Analysis and Purification, October 1986, 48–53                                    Chromatography, K. Titani, T. Sasagawa, K. Resing and K.A. Walsh,
                                                                                       Anal. Biochem. 123, 408–412 (1982)
                                                                                  58   HPLC Purification of the Main Allergen of Parietaria judaica Pollen,
                                                                                       F. Polo, R. Ayuso and J. Carriera, Molecular Immunology 27(2),
                                                                                       151–157 (1990)

66                                                                                                                                                           67
Other                                                                               Grace Vydac ADVANCES
59   Erythropoetin purification, Por-Hsiung and T. Strickland, U.S. Patent No.      (Grace Vydac ADVANCES is a newsletter published by Grace Vydac.
     04667016                                                                       For copies, contact Grace Vydac or visit our website at
60   Expression, Purification and Characterization of Recombinant Murine
     Granulocyte-Macrophage Colony-Stimulating Factor and Bovine                    63   Vydac ADVANCES, Spring 1997. Vydac Introduces 238TP, a New 300 Å
     Interleukin-2 From Yeast, V. Price, D. Mochizuki, C.J. March, D.                    Monomeric C18 Reverse-Phase Column.
     Cosman, M.C. Deeley, R. Klinke, W. Clevenger, S. Gillis, P. Baker and D.       64   Vydac ADVANCES, Spring 1997. What is 0.1% TFA? Changing the
     Urdal, Gene 55, 287–293 (1987)                                                      modifier concentration provides another way to vary peptide selectivity.
61   Production of Recombinant Human Colony Stimulating Factors in                       Keeping it the same is important for reproducibility.
     Yeast, S. Gillis, D. Urdal, W. Clevenger, R. Klinke, H. Sassenfeld, V. Price   65   Vydac ADVANCES, Winter 1998. Vydac 3 µm 300 Reversed-phase
     and D. Cosman, Behring Institute Research Communications 83,                        Columns Speed Protein and Peptide Analyses.
     1–7 (1988)                                                                     66   Vydac ADVANCES, Spring 1998. LC/MS and Microanalysis
62   Production Scale Purification of Biosynthetic Human Insulin By                      Applications Benefit from Vydac® Microbore Columns.
     Reversed-Phase High-Performance Liquid Chromatography,                         67   Vydac ADVANCES, Summer 1998. Optimum Peptide Purification.
     E.P. Kroeff, R.A. Owens, E.L. Campbell, R.D. Johnson and H.I. Marks,                Effects of Pore-Size, Buffers, pH, and Chemistry. Two Vydac Wide-Pore
     J. Chrom. 461, 45–61 (1989)                                                         C18 Columns Provide Selectivity Alternatives.
                                                                                    68   Vydac ADVANCES, Summer 1998. The Concept of a Resolution Mixture.
                                                                                         Its Role in Developing and Validating Process Chromatographic Methods
                                                                                    69   Vydac ADVANCES, Spring 1999. Two New Reversed-Phase Columns
                                                                                         Permit Peptide Separations at Low TFA Concentrations
                                                                                    70   Vydac ADVANCES, Fall 1999. Peptide Separations on a C18 LC/MS
                                                                                         Column. Optimizing the Effects of Mobile-Phase Modifiers
                                                                                    71   Vydac ADVANCES, Fall 1999. Vydac Reversed-Phase Columns Aid in
                                                                                         Purification of Recombinant Alzheimer’s Proteins. University of Georgia
                                                                                         Group Produces Pure A1-42 in Milligram Quantities
                                                                                    72   Vydac ADVANCES, Spring 2000. Reversed-Phase Preparative and
                                                                                         Process Chromatography. A Powerful but Often Overlooked Method for
                                                                                         Protein Purification.
                                                                                    73   Vydac ADVANCES, Summer 2000. Peptide Separations. All 300 Å
                                                                                         Reversed-Phase Columns are Not the Same
                                                                                    74   Vydac ADVANCES, Winter 2001. Vydac’s Contribution to
                                                                                         Biopharmaceutical Development.
                                                                                    75   Grace Vydac ADVANCES, Winter 2001–2002. VYDAC® LC/MS
                                                                                         Pre-Packed Capillary Columns Benefit Peptide Analysis and Proteomics.
                                                                                    76   Grace Vydac ADVANCES, Winter 2001–2002. Practical Application
                                                                                         from the Protein Characterization and Proteomics Laboratory at University
                                                                                         of Cincinnati College of Medicine.

68                                                                                                                                                              69
                                                                               Hesperia, California, USA
                                                                               ISO manufacturing, research and
                                                                               development, applications and shipping

                                                                               The Separations Group
                                                                               17434 Mojave Street
                                                                               Hesperia, CA 92345 USA
About the author                                                               Phone: (800) 247-0924 or (760) 244-6107
                                                                               Fax: (888) 244-6610 or (760) 244-1984
David Carr, a graduate of U.C. Berkeley, first became involved in HPLC
                                                                               Columbia, Maryland, USA
in 1971, when the technique was in its infancy. As the technical marketing     Executive offices, sales and marketing
                                                                               management, and separations research
manager of Vydac from 1984–1996, David was involved in the use of
                                                                               W. R. Grace & Co.– Conn.
reversed-phase HPLC for protein and peptide separations for both analytical    7500 Grace Drive
and preparative purposes. Working with companies such as Genentech,            Columbia, MD 21044 USA
                                                                               Phone: (410) 531-4000
Amgen, and Immunex, David assisted in developing protein and peptide           Toll Free: (800) 638-6014
                                                                               Fax: (410) 531-4273
separation methods for quality control as well as consulting on large-scale
preparative separations. Since 1996 David has developed and instructed         Baltimore, Maryland, USA
                                                                               ISO manufacturing and shipping
courses in analytical biotechnology and HPLC. His short course, Fundamentals
                                                                               W. R. Grace & Co.– Conn.
in Analytical Biotechnology, is very popular among biotechnology companies     5500 Chemical Road
                                                                               Baltimore, MD 21226 USA
(details may be found at David is the author of    Phone: (410) 355-4900
                                                                               Fax: (410) 354-8945
the first two editions of The Handbook of the Analysis and Purification
of Peptides and Proteins by Reversed-Phase HPLC as well as this, the           Worms, Germany
                                                                               Separations research and ISO manufacturing
Third Edition.
                                                                               Grace GmbH & Co. KG
                                                                               In der Hollerhecke 1
                                                                               67545 Worms, Germany
                                                                               Phone: (49) 6241 403 0
                                                                               Fax: (49) 6241 403 211

                                                                               Customer and Technical Service
                                                                               17434 Mojave Street
                                                                               Hesperia, California 92345
                                                                               Phone: 760-244-6107
                                                                               Fax: 760-244-1984


                                                                               The information contained herein is based on our testing and experience and is offered for the user’s consideration, investigation
                                                                               and verification. Since operating and use conditions vary and since we do not control such condiitions, we must DISCLAIM
                                                                               ANY WARRANTY, EXPRESSED OR IMPLIED, with regard to results to be obtained from the use of this product. Test methods are
                                                                               available on request. © 2002 W.R. Grace & Co.-Conn. All rights reserved. VYDAC is a registered trademark of The Separations
                                                                               Group, a wholly-owned subsidiary of W. R. Grace & Co.–Conn.


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