Date of Graduation

Spring 2015

Document Type

Honors Research Project

Degree Name

Bachelor of Science



Research Sponsor

Chrys Wesdemiotis

First Reader

Christopher Ziegler

Second Reader

Matthew Panzner


Various ions of poly-L-lysine and polystyrene sulfonic acid were successfully observed first within a matrix-assisted laser desorption/ionization mass spectrometer and subsequently in an electrospray ionization mass spectrometer. The successful ionization of these polymers allowed for studies to be performed on the noncovalent interactions between the two. Noncovalent interactions were effectively studied on both instruments, but further quantified using tandem mass spectrometry found within the MALDI system and ion-mobility mass spectrometry found within the electrospray ionization system. As a result of employing the use of ion-mobility, various different stoichiometries and charges of polyelectrolyte complexes could be distinguished.