Guanyu Gong, Carlos T. Garcia, Steven R. Tannenbaum, Xin Wang, John S. Wishnok
S-Nitrosothiols (RSNOs) constitute a circulating endogenous reservoir of nitric oxide and have important biological activities. In this study, an online coupling of solid-phase derivatization (SPD) with liquid chromatography–mass spectrometry (LC-MS) was developed and applied in the analysis of low-molecular-mass RSNOs. A derivatizing-reagent-modified polymer monolithic column was prepared and adapted for online SPD-LC-MS. Analytes from the LC autosampler flowed through the monolithic column for derivatization and then directly into the LC-MS for analysis. This integration of the online derivatization, LC separation, and MS detection facilitated system automation, allowing rapid, laborsaving, and sensitive detection of RSNOs. S-Nitrosoglutathione (GSNO) was quantified using this automated online method with good linearity (R2 = 0.9994); the limit of detection was 0.015 nM. The online SPD-LC-MS method has been used to determine GSNO levels in mouse samples, 138 ± 13.2 nM of endogenous GSNO was detected in mouse plasma. Besides, the GSNO concentrations in liver (64.8 ± 11.3 pmol/mg protein), kidney (47.2 ± 6.1 pmol/mg protein), heart (8.9 ± 1.8 pmol/mg protein), muscle (1.9 ± 0.3 pmol/mg protein), hippocampus (5.3 ± 0.9 pmol/mg protein), striatum (6.7 ± 0.6 pmol/mg protein), cerebellum (31.4 ± 6.5 pmol/mg protein), and cortex (47.9 ± 4.6 pmol/mg protein) were also successfully quantified. When the derivatization was performed within 8 min, followed by LC-MS detection, samples could be rapidly analyzed compared with the offline manual method. Other low-molecular-mass RSNOs, such as S-nitrosocysteine and S-nitrosocysteinylglycine, were captured by rapid precursor-ion scanning, showing that the proposed method is a potentially powerful tool for capture, identification, and quantification of RSNOs in biological samples.