Evaluating the use of HILIC in large-scale, multi dimensional proteomics: horses for courses?

Dalila Bensaddek, Armel Nicolas, Angus I. Lamond (Lead / Corresponding author)

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    10 Citations (Scopus)
    179 Downloads (Pure)


    Despite many recent advances in instrumentation, the sheer complexity of biological samples remains a major challenge in large-scale proteomics experiments, reflecting both the large number of protein isoforms and the wide dynamic range of their expression levels. However, while the dynamic range of expression levels for different components of the proteome is estimated to be ~107-8, the equivalent dynamic range of LC-MS is currently limited to ~106. Sample pre-fractionation has therefore become routinely used in large-scale proteomics to reduce sample complexity during MS analysis and thus alleviate the problem of ion suppression and undersampling. There is currently a wide range of chromatographic techniques that can be applied as a first dimension separation. Here, we systematically evaluated the use of Hydrophilic Interaction LIquid Chromatography (HILIC), in comparison with hSAX, as a first dimension for peptide fractionation in a bottom-up proteomics workflow. The data indicate that in addition to its role as a useful pre-enrichment method for PTM analysis, HILIC can provide a robust, orthogonal and high-resolution method for increasing the depth of proteome coverage in large-scale proteomics experiments. The data also indicate that the choice of using either HILIC, hSAX, or other methods, is best made taking into account the specific types of biological analyses being performed.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)105-114
    Number of pages10
    JournalInternational Journal of Mass Spectrometry
    Early online date19 Aug 2015
    Publication statusPublished - 30 Nov 2015


    • 2D-LC
    • HILIC
    • PTM
    • Multi-dimensional proteomics
    • Chromatography
    • Mass spectrometry


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