A simple, single-step aqueous extraction method has been developed to study the neuropeptide content of small neuroendocrine organs. Perifusion of these tissues with deionized water causes osmotic bursting of the cells and release of their content into the surrounding fluid. The neuropeptides are immediately retained from the perifusion fluid using disposable C-18 cartridges. After one separation step and mass spectrometry, it was possible to identify a large number of known neuropeptides from the corpora cardiaca of Locusta migratoria (L). Also present in the extract were a number of neuropeptide fragments and two incompletely processed peptides. Using this method, a 959Da peptide present in the corpora cardiaca was sequenced de novo . The full sequence, deduced using Collision Induced Dissociation Tandem Mass Spectrometry (CID MS/MS), is Ser-Pro-Leu-Asp-Ala-His-His-Leu-Ala. This nonapeptide is predicted from the gene encoding the ion transport peptide precursor and from the gene encoding the ion transport-like peptide precursor. In both cases, this nonapeptide, which was named ion transport peptide-copeptide, is flanked by the signal sequence at the N-terminus and a dibasic cleavage site (Lys-Arg) at the C-terminus. This structural feature is common to many physiologically important locust preproneuropeptides and indicates that this copeptide might have a physiological function, but this is not yet known.