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Fluorocarbon Plasma Gas Passivation Enhances Performance of Porous Silicon for Desorption/Ionization Mass Spectrometry

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journal contribution
posted on 01.10.2020, 14:44 authored by Rajpreet Singh Minhas, E. Eduardo Antunez, Taryn M. Guinan, Thomas R. Gengenbach, David A. Rudd, Nicolas H. Voelcker
Desorption/ionization on porous silicon mass spectrometry (DIOS-MS) is shown to be a powerful technique for the sensing of low-molecular-weight compounds, including drugs and their metabolites. Surface modification of DIOS surfaces is required to increase analytical performance and ensure stability. However, common wet chemical modification techniques use fluorosilanes, which are less suitable for high-throughput manufacturing and analytical repeatability. Here, we report an alternative, rapid functionalization technique for DIOS surfaces using plasma polymerization (ppDIOS). We demonstrate the detection of drugs, metabolites, pesticides, and doping agents, directly from biological matrices, with molecular confirmation performed using the fragmentation capabilities of a tandem MS instrument. Furthermore, the ppDIOS surfaces were found to be stable over a 162 day period with no loss of reproducibility and sensitivity. This alternative functionalization technique is cost-effective and amenable to upscaling, ensuring avenues for the high-throughput manufacture and detection of hundreds of analytes across various applications while still maintaining the gold-standard clinical technique using mass spectrometry.

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