Enabling Technologies
This section features DDW articles around enabling technologies in drug discovery.
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I Robot. I, The Future - Robotics Within and Beyond The Lab Richard Holland
The Pistoia Alliance (whose membership includes most of the world’s major pharmaceutical companies, technology vendors and publishers active in the life science R&D sector), is keenly interested in discovering the ways in which innovation through pre-competitive collaboration can be used to explore and exploit the constant stream of new technologies that become available.

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With Synthetic Biology, Drug Discovery Is Going Virtual by Christopher Voigt
Christopher Voigt is a professor of biological engineering at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, where his lab focuses on synthetic biology. Two major areas of interest for him are developing a genetic programming language for cells and applying synthetic biology to biotechnology challenges.

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Metabolomics - A Playbook for Functional Genomics By Dr David Ferrick
If we have learned anything from scientific research in the last 20 years, it is that finding cures to complex diseases is difficult. Despite the promise of the genomic revolution, disease progression and patient outcomes are still not easily predicted by genetic factors alone.

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The Coming Age Of Mass Spectrometry Imaging By Dr Peter J.H. Webborn and Dr Richard J.A. Goodwin
Mapping complex drug distribution/retention in tissues, aligned with efficacy and safety biomarker localisation is now possible using label-free mass spectrometry imaging technologies.

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Microtissues For In Vitro Toxicity Assessment: Cost effective and in vivo relevant toxicology tools By Dr Stephanie Ravenscroft, Dr Caroline Bauch, Dr Laura Hinton and Dr Paul Walker
Conventional two-dimensional (2D) cell models (adherent cells grown on cell culture plates or cells in suspension) are limited in their abilities to accurately predict clinical toxicity since they lack the fundamental complexity of in vivo tissue environments. As a result efforts are being directed towards more sophisticated multicellular three-dimensional (3D) cell models with improved in vitro to in vivo correlation.

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Preclinical Imaging: Improving Translational Power In Oncology By Dr Todd Sasser
Imaging has long been indispensable in clinical practice, and researchers have for many years used the same toolbox of imaging modalities as a component of their preclinical and drug development work.

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Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) In Drug Development By Dr Geoff J.M. Parker
Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) can be used to provide quantitative measurements in the form of imaging biomarkers. These measurements have a number of attractive characteristics: They are non-invasive, can provide organ and lesion localisation of morphology, physiology and metabolism and can be repeated over time.

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New Developments in Single Cell Separation and Analysis Technologies By Dr John Comley Drug Discovery
Recent advances of single cell technologies are facilitating the opportunity to discern biological insights within individual cells and providing a means to reveal previously hidden relationships between individual cells within a population.

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Cell Migration: Probing Cell Movement With Smarter Tools By Dr John Comley
Cell migration comprises the movement of cells from one location to another in response to events, biological signals or environmental cues. Cell migration plays a critical role in numerous normal biological processes and also in many diseases.

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Preventing Pandemics By Dr Nathaniel Hentz
Over the years, influenza has taken the lives of millions. While vaccines are helping to reduce the damage caused by the virus, there is still a major capacity shortfall. Could access to US and European expertise and quality training improve capacity and prevent the next pandemic?

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Epigenetic Targets: On the verge of becoming a major new category for successful drug research By Dr John Comley
Most vendors of epigenetic modification proteins and reagents have enhanced and broadened their offerings in recent years. Of particular note is the increasing range of proteins and binding assays that now support research on the Bromodomains and other reader proteins.

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Real-Time PCR - Where we are and where are we heading By Dr Mikael Kubista
Quantitative real-time PCR is becoming mature technology for the quantification of nucleic acids. It is spreading wide outside its original use in the research laboratories, becoming preferred technology for a range of applications, many that require specialised solutions and adaptations. Integration with pre-analytical steps and post-processing operations are becoming key challenges.

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Compound Profiling: Size impact on primary screening libraries By William Downey, Cindy Liu and Dr Jennifer Hartigan
A recent report examines the trends in utilisation of compound libraries, as well as the impact of profiling on the size of screening decks. The drivers for choosing between large or focused libraries may be different, but the ultimate goal remains the same: improve drug discovery.

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Utilising 3D nuclear DNA methylation patterns in cell-based assays for epigenetic drug screening By Professor Jian Tajbakhsh, Professor Arkadiusz Gertych and Professor Daniel L Farkas
Since epigenetic changes are thought to underlie a wide range of complex diseases, the scope of epigenetic drug therapy is likely to expand, as epigenetic phenomena, in contrast to pure genetic mechanisms, are reversible.

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Molecular Imaging Approaches - How can they help drug development? By Dr Susanta K. Sarkar
The current challenges facing drug discovery and development in terms of attrition are well documented. This article discusses how molecular imaging approaches from bench to bedside can not only streamline drug development, but also open up new opportunities in the treatment management of targeted therapies.

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1536 Plate Progress: Done deal but difficult transition? By Dr John Comley
After nearly 15 years of challenging maturity 1536 plate adoption (particularly in primary screening), finally appears to have taken hold.

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Enabling Technologies
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