Live Chat Support Software
800.227.0627

Can you explain the M+Na and M+K mass peaks in MALDI spectra?

It is very common to see Na (sodium) and K (potassium) adducts in the MALDI spectrum. The sodium and potassium comes from the water used in the peptide solvents. Even distilled and deionized water has trace amounts of sodium and potassium ions, which can never be entirely removed. These become ionized during the MALDI mass spec process and bind to the free carboxyl groups of the peptide. Because there is no water purification system that will remove every single sodium or potassium ion from water, seeing the sodium and potassium adducts at times is very common and unavoidable in MALDI mass spec. This is not an indication that the peptide is not pure, nor should it be confused with an incorrect molecular weight.