Science.gov

Sample records for psychiatric drug discovery

  1. Prospects for neurodegenerative and psychiatric disorder drug discovery.

    PubMed

    Williams, Michael; Enna, S J

    2011-05-01

    The discovery of CNS-active drugs has, to a major extent, resulted from clinical serendipity. Once targets for such compounds were identified, conventional mechanism-based approaches were used to identify new chemical entities for the treatment of neurological and psychiatric disorders. Most of these have, however, failed to display any greater efficacy than existing psychotherapeutics and may, in fact, be less efficacious because of side effect liabilities. Among the reasons for this lack of success in drug discovery include a lack of fundamental knowledge regarding the causes of CNS disorders, the absence of biomarkers for diagnosing and monitoring these conditions, a paucity of animal models that are congruent with the human disease state and the increasing likelihood that CNS conditions are multifactorial in their etiology. These challenges force the inclusion of a Phase IIa proof of concept trial as a component of the drug discovery program. Unlike other therapeutic areas, serendipity is a major factor in the CNS translational medicine interface requiring a close collaboration between preclinical and clinical scientists trained to appreciate unusual behavioral phenotypes. When combined with conventional target-based drug discovery technologies, this increases the likelihood of identifying truly novel drugs for the treatment of CNS disorders. PMID:22646072

  2. Drug discovery strategies that focus on the endocannabinoid signaling system in psychiatric disease

    PubMed Central

    Wyrofsky, Ryan; McGonigle, Paul; Van Bockstaele, Elisabeth J.

    2015-01-01

    Introduction The endocannabinoid (eCB) system plays an important role in the control of mood, and its dysregulation has been implicated in several psychiatric disorders. Targeting the eCB system appears to represent an attractive and novel approach to the treatment of depression and other mood disorders. However, several failed clinical trials have diminished enthusiasm for the continued development of eCB-targeted therapeutics for psychiatric disorders, despite of the encouraging preclinical data and promising preliminary results obtained with the synthetic cannabinoid nabilone for treating post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). Areas covered This review describes the eCB system’s role in modulating cell signaling within the brain. There is a specific focus on eCB’s regulation of monoamine neurotransmission and the stress axis, as well as how dysfunction of this interaction can contribute to the development of psychiatric disorders. Additionally, the review provides discussion on compounds and drugs that target this system and might prove to be successful for the treatment of mood-related psychiatric disorders. Expert opinion The discovery of increasingly selective modulators of CB receptors should enable the identification of optimal therapeutic strategies. It should also maximize the likelihood of developing safe and effective treatments for debilitating psychiatric disorders. PMID:25488672

  3. NIMH Initiatives to Facilitate Collaborations between Industry, Academia and Government for the Discovery and Clinical Testing of Novel Models and Drugs for Psychiatric Disorders

    PubMed Central

    Brady, Linda S.; Winsky, Lois; Goodman, Wayne; Oliveri, Mary Ellen; Stover, Ellen

    2008-01-01

    There is an urgent need to transform basic research discoveries into tools for treatment and prevention of mental illnesses. This article presents an overview of the National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH) programs and resources to address the challenges and opportunities in psychiatric drug development starting at the point of discovery through the early phases of translational research. We summarize NIMH and selected National Institutes of Health (NIH) efforts to stimulate translation of basic and clinical neuroscience findings into novel targets, models, compounds, and strategies for the development of innovative therapeutics for psychiatric disorders. Examples of collaborations and partnerships between NIMH/NIH, academia, and industry are highlighted. PMID:18800066

  4. Increasing pharmacological knowledge about human neurological and psychiatric disorders through functional neuroimaging and its application in drug discovery.

    PubMed

    Nathan, Pradeep J; Phan, K Luan; Harmer, Catherine J; Mehta, Mitul A; Bullmore, Edward T

    2014-02-01

    Functional imaging methods such as fMRI have been widely used to gain greater understanding of brain circuitry abnormalities in CNS disorders and their underlying neurochemical basis. Findings suggest that: (1) drugs with known clinical efficacy have consistent effects on disease relevant brain circuitry, (2) brain activation changes at baseline or early drug effects on brain activity can predict long-term efficacy; and (3) fMRI together with pharmacological challenges could serve as experimental models of disease phenotypes and be used for screening novel drugs. Together, these observations suggest that drug related modulation of disease relevant brain circuitry may serve as a promising biomarker/method for use in drug discovery to demonstrate target engagement, differential efficacy, dose-response relationships, and prediction of clinically relevant changes.

  5. Drug discovery in academia.

    PubMed

    Shamas-Din, Aisha; Schimmer, Aaron D

    2015-08-01

    Participation of academic centers in aspects of drug discovery and development beyond target identification and clinical trials is rapidly increasing. Yet many academic drug discovery projects continue to stall at the level of chemical probes, and they infrequently progress to drugs suitable for clinical trials. This gap poses a major hurdle for academic groups engaged in drug discovery. A number of approaches have been pursued to overcome this gap, including stopping at the production of high-quality chemical probes, establishing the resources in-house to advance select projects toward clinical trials, partnering with not-for-profit groups to bring the necessary resources and expertise to develop probes into drugs, and drug repurposing, whereby known drugs are advanced into clinical trials for new indications. In this review, we consider the role of academia in anticancer drug discovery and development, as well as the strategies used by academic groups to overcome barriers in this process.

  6. Antibiotic drug discovery.

    PubMed

    Wohlleben, Wolfgang; Mast, Yvonne; Stegmann, Evi; Ziemert, Nadine

    2016-09-01

    Due to the threat posed by the increase of highly resistant pathogenic bacteria, there is an urgent need for new antibiotics; all the more so since in the last 20 years, the approval for new antibacterial agents had decreased. The field of natural product discovery has undergone a tremendous development over the past few years. This has been the consequence of several new and revolutionizing drug discovery and development techniques, which is initiating a 'New Age of Antibiotic Discovery'. In this review, we concentrate on the most significant discovery approaches during the last and present years and comment on the challenges facing the community in the coming years. PMID:27470984

  7. Toxins and drug discovery.

    PubMed

    Harvey, Alan L

    2014-12-15

    Components from venoms have stimulated many drug discovery projects, with some notable successes. These are briefly reviewed, from captopril to ziconotide. However, there have been many more disappointments on the road from toxin discovery to approval of a new medicine. Drug discovery and development is an inherently risky business, and the main causes of failure during development programmes are outlined in order to highlight steps that might be taken to increase the chances of success with toxin-based drug discovery. These include having a clear focus on unmet therapeutic needs, concentrating on targets that are well-validated in terms of their relevance to the disease in question, making use of phenotypic screening rather than molecular-based assays, and working with development partners with the resources required for the long and expensive development process.

  8. Ayurvedic drug discovery.

    PubMed

    Balachandran, Premalatha; Govindarajan, Rajgopal

    2007-12-01

    Ayurveda is a major traditional system of Indian medicine that is still being successfully used in many countries. Recapitulation and adaptation of the older science to modern drug discovery processes can bring renewed interest to the pharmaceutical world and offer unique therapeutic solutions for a wide range of human disorders. Eventhough time-tested evidences vouch immense therapeutic benefits for ayurvedic herbs and formulations, several important issues are required to be resolved for successful implementation of ayurvedic principles to present drug discovery methodologies. Additionally, clinical examination in the extent of efficacy, safety and drug interactions of newly developed ayurvedic drugs and formulations are required to be carefully evaluated. Ayurvedic experts suggest a reverse-pharmacology approach focusing on the potential targets for which ayurvedic herbs and herbal products could bring tremendous leads to ayurvedic drug discovery. Although several novel leads and drug molecules have already been discovered from ayurvedic medicinal herbs, further scientific explorations in this arena along with customization of present technologies to ayurvedic drug manufacturing principles would greatly facilitate a standardized ayurvedic drug discovery.

  9. Drug discovery in jeopardy

    PubMed Central

    Cuatrecasas, Pedro

    2006-01-01

    Despite striking advances in the biomedical sciences, the flow of new drugs has slowed to a trickle, impairing therapeutic advances as well as the commercial success of drug companies. Reduced productivity in the drug industry is caused mainly by corporate policies that discourage innovation. This is compounded by various consequences of mega-mergers, the obsession for blockbuster drugs, the shift of control of research from scientists to marketers, the need for fast sales growth, and the discontinuation of development compounds for nontechnical reasons. Lessons from the past indicate that these problems can be overcome, and herein, new and improved directions for drug discovery are suggested. PMID:17080187

  10. Drug discovery today.

    PubMed

    Schwardt, Oliver; Kolb, Hartmuth; Ernst, Beat

    2003-01-01

    In recent years, tools for the development of new drugs have been dramatically improved. These include genomic and proteomic research, numerous biophysical methods, combinatorial chemistry and screening technologies. In addition, early ADMET studies are employed in order to significantly reduce the failure rate in the development of drug candidates. As a consequence, the lead finding, lead optimization and development process has gained marked enhancement in speed and efficiency. In parallel to this development, major pharma companies are increasingly outsourcing many components of drug discovery research to biotech companies. All these measures are designed to address the need for a faster time to market. New screening methodologies have contributed significantly to the efficiency of the drug discovery process. The conventional screening of single compounds or compound libraries has been dramatically accelerated by high throughput screening methods. In addition, in silico screening methods allow the evaluation of virtual compounds. A wide range of new lead finding and lead optimization opportunities result from novel screening methods by NMR, which are the topic of this review article.

  11. RAS - Screens & Assays - Drug Discovery

    Cancer.gov

    The RAS Drug Discovery group aims to develop assays that will reveal aspects of RAS biology upon which cancer cells depend. Successful assay formats are made available for high-throughput screening programs to yield potentially effective drug compounds.

  12. Bioanalysis in oncology drug discovery.

    PubMed

    Srinivas, Nuggehally R; Mullangi, Ramesh

    2015-01-01

    Bioanalysis is an important aspect of drug discovery process regardless of the chosen therapeutic area. There is a general misconception that bioanalysis is seldom important during the drug discovery process because there is no scrutiny of the data from a regulatory perspective. However, bioanalytical data gathered during the discovery stage enable several key decision(s) inclusive of termination of the program and/or creating adequate differentiation from the lead competitive molecules. The review covers various stage gate screens and experimental designs where bioanalytical data are extensively used for making an informed decision during the process of drug discovery.

  13. Optogenetics enlightens neuroscience drug discovery.

    PubMed

    Song, Chenchen; Knöpfel, Thomas

    2016-02-01

    Optogenetics - the use of light and genetics to manipulate and monitor the activities of defined cell populations - has already had a transformative impact on basic neuroscience research. Now, the conceptual and methodological advances associated with optogenetic approaches are providing fresh momentum to neuroscience drug discovery, particularly in areas that are stalled on the concept of 'fixing the brain chemistry'. Optogenetics is beginning to translate and transit into drug discovery in several key domains, including target discovery, high-throughput screening and novel therapeutic approaches to disease states. Here, we discuss the exciting potential of optogenetic technologies to transform neuroscience drug discovery.

  14. Computer-aided drug discovery

    PubMed Central

    Bajorath, Jürgen

    2015-01-01

    Computational approaches are an integral part of interdisciplinary drug discovery research. Understanding the science behind computational tools, their opportunities, and limitations is essential to make a true impact on drug discovery at different levels. If applied in a scientifically meaningful way, computational methods improve the ability to identify and evaluate potential drug molecules, but there remain weaknesses in the methods that preclude naïve applications. Herein, current trends in computer-aided drug discovery are reviewed, and selected computational areas are discussed. Approaches are highlighted that aid in the identification and optimization of new drug candidates. Emphasis is put on the presentation and discussion of computational concepts and methods, rather than case studies or application examples. As such, this contribution aims to provide an overview of the current methodological spectrum of computational drug discovery for a broad audience. PMID:26949519

  15. Drug discovery FAQs: workflows for answering multidomain drug discovery questions.

    PubMed

    Chichester, Christine; Digles, Daniela; Siebes, Ronald; Loizou, Antonis; Groth, Paul; Harland, Lee

    2015-04-01

    Modern data-driven drug discovery requires integrated resources to support decision-making and enable new discoveries. The Open PHACTS Discovery Platform (http://dev.openphacts.org) was built to address this requirement by focusing on drug discovery questions that are of high priority to the pharmaceutical industry. Although complex, most of these frequently asked questions (FAQs) revolve around the combination of data concerning compounds, targets, pathways and diseases. Computational drug discovery using workflow tools and the integrated resources of Open PHACTS can deliver answers to most of these questions. Here, we report on a selection of workflows used for solving these use cases and discuss some of the research challenges. The workflows are accessible online from myExperiment (http://www.myexperiment.org) and are available for reuse by the scientific community.

  16. Deep Learning in Drug Discovery.

    PubMed

    Gawehn, Erik; Hiss, Jan A; Schneider, Gisbert

    2016-01-01

    Artificial neural networks had their first heyday in molecular informatics and drug discovery approximately two decades ago. Currently, we are witnessing renewed interest in adapting advanced neural network architectures for pharmaceutical research by borrowing from the field of "deep learning". Compared with some of the other life sciences, their application in drug discovery is still limited. Here, we provide an overview of this emerging field of molecular informatics, present the basic concepts of prominent deep learning methods and offer motivation to explore these techniques for their usefulness in computer-assisted drug discovery and design. We specifically emphasize deep neural networks, restricted Boltzmann machine networks and convolutional networks. PMID:27491648

  17. Deep Learning in Drug Discovery.

    PubMed

    Gawehn, Erik; Hiss, Jan A; Schneider, Gisbert

    2016-01-01

    Artificial neural networks had their first heyday in molecular informatics and drug discovery approximately two decades ago. Currently, we are witnessing renewed interest in adapting advanced neural network architectures for pharmaceutical research by borrowing from the field of "deep learning". Compared with some of the other life sciences, their application in drug discovery is still limited. Here, we provide an overview of this emerging field of molecular informatics, present the basic concepts of prominent deep learning methods and offer motivation to explore these techniques for their usefulness in computer-assisted drug discovery and design. We specifically emphasize deep neural networks, restricted Boltzmann machine networks and convolutional networks.

  18. Drug discovery: lessons from evolution

    PubMed Central

    Warren, John

    2011-01-01

    A common view within the pharmaceutical industry is that there is a problem with drug discovery and we should do something about it. There is much sympathy for this from academics, regulators and politicians. In this article I propose that lessons learnt from evolution help identify those factors that favour successful drug discovery. This personal view is influenced by a decade spent reviewing drug development programmes submitted for European regulatory approval. During the prolonged gestation of a new medicine few candidate molecules survive. This process of elimination of many variants and the survival of so few has much in common with evolution, an analogy that encourages discussion of the forces that favour, and those that hinder, successful drug discovery. Imagining a world without vaccines, anaesthetics, contraception and anti-infectives reveals how medicines revolutionized humanity. How to manipulate conditions that favour such discoveries is worth consideration. PMID:21395642

  19. Evolutionary inspirations for drug discovery.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Hong-Yu; Chen, Ling-Ling; Li, Xue-Juan; Zhang, Jian

    2010-10-01

    Conceptual innovations are needed to address the challenge of 'more investments, fewer drugs' in the pharmaceutical industry. Since the publication of The Origin of Species by Charles Darwin 150 years ago, evolution has been a central concept in biology. In this article, we show that evolutionary concepts are also helpful to streamline the drug-discovery pipeline through facilitating the discovery of targets and drug candidates. Furthermore, the antioxidant paradox can be addressed by an evolutionary methodology. Through examining the evolved biological roles of natural polyphenols (which dominate current antioxidant drug discovery), we reveal that polyphenols (particularly flavonoids) are not evolved for scavenging free radicals. This finding provides new clues to understanding why the strong in vitro antioxidant activities of polyphenols cannot be translated into in vivo effects. Polyphenols have evolved a superior ability to bind various proteins, so we also argue that they are good starting points for multi-target drugs. PMID:20724009

  20. Evolutionary inspirations for drug discovery.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Hong-Yu; Chen, Ling-Ling; Li, Xue-Juan; Zhang, Jian

    2010-10-01

    Conceptual innovations are needed to address the challenge of 'more investments, fewer drugs' in the pharmaceutical industry. Since the publication of The Origin of Species by Charles Darwin 150 years ago, evolution has been a central concept in biology. In this article, we show that evolutionary concepts are also helpful to streamline the drug-discovery pipeline through facilitating the discovery of targets and drug candidates. Furthermore, the antioxidant paradox can be addressed by an evolutionary methodology. Through examining the evolved biological roles of natural polyphenols (which dominate current antioxidant drug discovery), we reveal that polyphenols (particularly flavonoids) are not evolved for scavenging free radicals. This finding provides new clues to understanding why the strong in vitro antioxidant activities of polyphenols cannot be translated into in vivo effects. Polyphenols have evolved a superior ability to bind various proteins, so we also argue that they are good starting points for multi-target drugs.

  1. The Dynamics of Drug Discovery.

    PubMed

    Moroni, Elisabetta; Paladino, Antonella; Colombo, Giorgio

    2015-01-01

    Proteins are not static objects. To carry out their functions in the cells and participate in biochemical interaction networks, proteins have to explore different conformational substates, which favor the adaptation to different partners and ultimately allow them to respond to changes in the environment. In this paper we discuss the implications of including the atomistic description of protein dynamics and flexibility in the context of drug discovery and design. The underlying idea is that a better understanding of the atomistic details of molecular recognition phenomena and conformational cross-talk between a ligand and a receptor can in fact translate in unexplored opportunities for the discovery of new drug like molecules. We will illustrate and discuss dynamics-based pharmacophores, the discovery of cryptic binding sites, the characterization and exploitation of allosteric regulation mechanisms and the definition of potential protein-protein interaction sites as potential sources of new bases for the rational design of small molecules endowed with specific biological functions. Overall, the inclusion of protein flexibility in the drug discovery process is starting to attract attention not only in the academic but also in the industrial community. This is supported by experimental tests that prove the actual feasibility of considering the explicit dynamics of drug-protein interactions at all relevant levels of resolution and the use of multiple receptor conformations in drug discovery, as affordable complements (if not an alternative) to classical High Throughput Screening (HTS) efforts based on static structures. PMID:26156197

  2. Trends in Modern Drug Discovery.

    PubMed

    Eder, Jörg; Herrling, Paul L

    2016-01-01

    Drugs discovered by the pharmaceutical industry over the past 100 years have dramatically changed the practice of medicine and impacted on many aspects of our culture. For many years, drug discovery was a target- and mechanism-agnostic approach that was based on ethnobotanical knowledge often fueled by serendipity. With the advent of modern molecular biology methods and based on knowledge of the human genome, drug discovery has now largely changed into a hypothesis-driven target-based approach, a development which was paralleled by significant environmental changes in the pharmaceutical industry. Laboratories became increasingly computerized and automated, and geographically dispersed research sites are now more and more clustered into large centers to capture technological and biological synergies. Today, academia, the regulatory agencies, and the pharmaceutical industry all contribute to drug discovery, and, in order to translate the basic science into new medical treatments for unmet medical needs, pharmaceutical companies have to have a critical mass of excellent scientists working in many therapeutic fields, disciplines, and technologies. The imperative for the pharmaceutical industry to discover breakthrough medicines is matched by the increasing numbers of first-in-class drugs approved in recent years and reflects the impact of modern drug discovery approaches, technologies, and genomics.

  3. Trends in Modern Drug Discovery.

    PubMed

    Eder, Jörg; Herrling, Paul L

    2016-01-01

    Drugs discovered by the pharmaceutical industry over the past 100 years have dramatically changed the practice of medicine and impacted on many aspects of our culture. For many years, drug discovery was a target- and mechanism-agnostic approach that was based on ethnobotanical knowledge often fueled by serendipity. With the advent of modern molecular biology methods and based on knowledge of the human genome, drug discovery has now largely changed into a hypothesis-driven target-based approach, a development which was paralleled by significant environmental changes in the pharmaceutical industry. Laboratories became increasingly computerized and automated, and geographically dispersed research sites are now more and more clustered into large centers to capture technological and biological synergies. Today, academia, the regulatory agencies, and the pharmaceutical industry all contribute to drug discovery, and, in order to translate the basic science into new medical treatments for unmet medical needs, pharmaceutical companies have to have a critical mass of excellent scientists working in many therapeutic fields, disciplines, and technologies. The imperative for the pharmaceutical industry to discover breakthrough medicines is matched by the increasing numbers of first-in-class drugs approved in recent years and reflects the impact of modern drug discovery approaches, technologies, and genomics. PMID:26330257

  4. Cellular biosensors for drug discovery.

    PubMed

    Durick, K; Negulescu, P

    2001-09-01

    Recent advances in cell biology, fluorescent probe chemistry, miniaturization and automation have allowed the use of mammalian cells in a variety of medical and industrial applications. Here we describe the generation of cell-based biosensors, engineered to optically report specific biological activity. Cellular biosensors are comprised of living cells and can be used in various applications, including screening chemical libraries for drug discovery and environmental sensing. Panels of biosensors may also be useful for elucidating the function of novel genes. Here we describe two examples of the construction and use of engineered cell lines as biosensors for drug discovery.

  5. Sleep disturbances, psychiatric disorders, and psychotropic drugs

    PubMed Central

    Staner, Luc

    2005-01-01

    Brain neurotransmitter dysfunctions involved in the pathophysiological processes of psychiatric disorders are likely to be reflected by concomitant alterations in sleep continuity and architecture. Since the corrective effects of psychotropic drugs on dysfunctional neurotransmission systems can be evidenced through polysomnographic recordings, one may consider sleep as a kind of “window” on the neurobiology of psychiatric disorders. During the last 10 years, major breakthroughs in our understanding of sleep-wake mechanisms have provided some indications on how psychotropic drugs could influence the sleep-wake cycle. In this review, recent inroads into the understanding of sleep regulatory neural mechanisms are introduced and discussed in terms of the effects of psychotropic drugs. The relationship between the patho-physiological process of a disease, its consequence on sleep, and the corrective effect of a psychotropic drug are exemplified by two psychopathological states: substance withdrawal and major depression. One may conclude that polysomnographic recordings are a unique noninvasive tool to analyze brain functioning, and are particularly well suited to evaluating the objective effects of new psychotropic drugs. PMID:16416708

  6. Binding Kinetics in Drug Discovery.

    PubMed

    Ferruz, Noelia; De Fabritiis, Gianni

    2016-07-01

    Over the last years, researchers have increasingly become interested in measuring and understanding drugs' binding kinetics, namely the time in which drug and its target associate and dissociate. Historically, drug discovery programs focused on the optimization of target affinity as a proxy of in-vivo efficacy. However, often the efficacy of a ligand is not appropriately described by the in-vitro measured drug-receptor affinity, but rather depends on the lifetime of the in-vivo drug-receptor interaction. In this review we review recent works that highlight the importance of binding kinetics, molecular determinants for rational optimization and the recent emergence of computational methods as powerful tools in measuring and understanding binding kinetics. PMID:27492236

  7. New strategies in drug discovery.

    PubMed

    Ohlstein, Eliot H; Johnson, Anthony G; Elliott, John D; Romanic, Anne M

    2006-01-01

    Gene identification followed by determination of the expression of genes in a given disease and understanding of the function of the gene products is central to the drug discovery process. The ability to associate a specific gene with a disease can be attributed primarily to the extraordinary progress that has been made in the areas of gene sequencing and information technologies. Selection and validation of novel molecular targets have become of great importance in light of the abundance of new potential therapeutic drug targets that have emerged from human gene sequencing. In response to this revolution within the pharmaceutical industry, the development of high-throughput methods in both biology and chemistry has been necessitated. Further, the successful translation of basic scientific discoveries into clinical experimental medicine and novel therapeutics is an increasing challenge. As such, a new paradigm for drug discovery has emerged. This process involves the integration of clinical, genetic, genomic, and molecular phenotype data partnered with cheminformatics. Central to this process, the data generated are managed, collated, and interpreted with the use of informatics. This review addresses the use of new technologies that have arisen to deal with this new paradigm.

  8. Computational Methods in Drug Discovery

    PubMed Central

    Sliwoski, Gregory; Kothiwale, Sandeepkumar; Meiler, Jens

    2014-01-01

    Computer-aided drug discovery/design methods have played a major role in the development of therapeutically important small molecules for over three decades. These methods are broadly classified as either structure-based or ligand-based methods. Structure-based methods are in principle analogous to high-throughput screening in that both target and ligand structure information is imperative. Structure-based approaches include ligand docking, pharmacophore, and ligand design methods. The article discusses theory behind the most important methods and recent successful applications. Ligand-based methods use only ligand information for predicting activity depending on its similarity/dissimilarity to previously known active ligands. We review widely used ligand-based methods such as ligand-based pharmacophores, molecular descriptors, and quantitative structure-activity relationships. In addition, important tools such as target/ligand data bases, homology modeling, ligand fingerprint methods, etc., necessary for successful implementation of various computer-aided drug discovery/design methods in a drug discovery campaign are discussed. Finally, computational methods for toxicity prediction and optimization for favorable physiologic properties are discussed with successful examples from literature. PMID:24381236

  9. Serendipity in anticancer drug discovery.

    PubMed

    Hargrave-Thomas, Emily; Yu, Bo; Reynisson, Jóhannes

    2012-01-10

    It was found that the discovery of 5.8% (84/1437) of all drugs on the market involved serendipity. Of these drugs, 31 (2.2%) were discovered following an incident in the laboratory and 53 (3.7%) were discovered in a clinical setting. In addition, 263 (18.3%) of the pharmaceuticals in clinical use today are chemical derivatives of the drugs discovered with the aid of serendipity. Therefore, in total, 24.1% (347/1437) of marketed drugs can be directly traced to serendipitous events confirming the importance of this elusive phenomenon. In the case of anticancer drugs, 35.2% (31/88) can be attributed to a serendipitous event, which is somewhat larger than for all drugs. The therapeutic field that has benefited the most from serendipity are central nervous system active drugs reflecting the difficulty in designing compounds to pass the blood-brain-barrier and the lack of laboratory-based assays for many of the diseases of the mind. PMID:22247822

  10. Mitigating risk in academic preclinical drug discovery.

    PubMed

    Dahlin, Jayme L; Inglese, James; Walters, Michael A

    2015-04-01

    The number of academic drug discovery centres has grown considerably in recent years, providing new opportunities to couple the curiosity-driven research culture in academia with rigorous preclinical drug discovery practices used in industry. To fully realize the potential of these opportunities, it is important that academic researchers understand the risks inherent in preclinical drug discovery, and that translational research programmes are effectively organized and supported at an institutional level. In this article, we discuss strategies to mitigate risks in several key aspects of preclinical drug discovery at academic drug discovery centres, including organization, target selection, assay design, medicinal chemistry and preclinical pharmacology.

  11. Mitigating risk in academic preclinical drug discovery.

    PubMed

    Dahlin, Jayme L; Inglese, James; Walters, Michael A

    2015-04-01

    The number of academic drug discovery centres has grown considerably in recent years, providing new opportunities to couple the curiosity-driven research culture in academia with rigorous preclinical drug discovery practices used in industry. To fully realize the potential of these opportunities, it is important that academic researchers understand the risks inherent in preclinical drug discovery, and that translational research programmes are effectively organized and supported at an institutional level. In this article, we discuss strategies to mitigate risks in several key aspects of preclinical drug discovery at academic drug discovery centres, including organization, target selection, assay design, medicinal chemistry and preclinical pharmacology. PMID:25829283

  12. The role of serendipity in drug discovery

    PubMed Central

    Ban, Thomas A.

    2006-01-01

    Serendipity is one of the many factors that may contribute to drug discovery. It has played a role in the discovery of prototype psychotropic drugs that led to modern pharmacological treatment in psychiatry. It has also played a role in the discovery of several drugs that have had an impact on the development of psychiatry, “Serendipity” in drug discovery implies the finding of one thing while looking for something else. This was the case in six of the twelve serendipitous discoveries reviewed in this paper, ie, aniline purple, penicillin, lysergic acid diethylamide, meprobamate, chlorpromazine, and imipramine, in the case of three drugs, ie, potassium bromide, chloral hydrate, and lithium, the discovery was serendipitous because an utterly false rationale led to correct empirical results; and in case of two others, ie, iproniazid and sildenafil, because valuable indications were found for these drugs which were not initially those sought. The discovery of one of the twelve drugs, chlordiazepoxide, was sheer luck. PMID:17117615

  13. Drug discovery from marine microbes.

    PubMed

    Gerwick, William H; Fenner, Amanda M

    2013-05-01

    The marine environment has been a source of more than 20,000 inspirational natural products discovered over the past 50 years. From these efforts, 9 approved drugs and 12 current clinical trial agents have been discovered, either as natural products or as molecules inspired from the natural product structure. To a significant degree, these have come from collections of marine invertebrates largely obtained from shallow-water tropical ecosystems. However, there is a growing recognition that marine invertebrates are oftentimes populated with enormous quantities of "associated" or symbiotic microorganisms and that microorganisms are the true metabolic sources of these most valuable of marine natural products. Also, because of the inherently multidisciplinary nature of this field, a high degree of innovation is characteristic of marine natural product drug discovery efforts.

  14. Drug Discovery from Marine Microbes

    PubMed Central

    Gerwick, William H.; Fenner, Amanda M.

    2013-01-01

    The marine environment has been a source of more than 20,000 inspirational natural products discovered over the past 50 years. From these efforts, 9 approved drugs and 12 current clinical trial agents have been discovered, either as natural products or molecules inspired from the natural product structure. To a significant degree, these have come from collections of marine invertebrates largely obtained from shallow water tropical ecosystems. However, there is a growing recognition that marine invertebrates are oftentimes populated with enormous quantities of ‘associated’ or symbiotic microorganisms, and that microorganisms are the true metabolic sources of these most valuable of marine natural products. Also, because of the inherently multidisciplinary nature of this field, a high degree of innovation is characteristic of marine natural product drug discovery efforts. PMID:23274881

  15. Drug discovery: selecting the optimal approach.

    PubMed

    Sams-Dodd, Frank

    2006-05-01

    The target-based drug discovery approach has for the past 10-15 years been the dominating drug discovery paradigm. However, within the past few years, the commercial value of novel targets in licensing deals has fallen dramatically, reflecting that the probability of reaching a clinical drug candidate for a novel target is very low. This has naturally led to questions regarding the success of target-based drug discovery and, more importantly, a search for alternatives. This paper evaluates the strengths and limitations of the main drug discovery approaches, and proposes a novel approach that could offer advantages for the identification of disease-modifying treatments.

  16. Advancing drug discovery for schizophrenia

    PubMed Central

    Marder, Stephen R.; Roth, Bryan; Sullivan, Patrick F.; Scolnick, Edward M.; Nestler, Eric J.; Geyer, Mark A.; Welnberger, Daniel R.; Karayiorgou, Maria; Guidotti, Alessandro; Gingrich, Jay; Akbarian, Schahram; Buchanan, Robert W.; Lieberman, Jeffrey A.; Conn, P. Jeffrey; Haggarty, Stephen J.; Law, Amanda J.; Campbell, Brian; Krystal, John H.; Moghaddam, Bita; Saw, Akira; Caron, Marc G.; George, Susan R.; Allen, John A.; Solis, Michelle

    2013-01-01

    Sponsored by the New York Academy of Sciences and with support from the National Institute of Mental Health, the Life Technologies Foundation, and the Josiah Macy Jr. Foundation, “Advancing Drug Discovery for Schizophrenia” was held March 9–11 at the New York Academy of Sciences in New York City. The meeting, comprising individual talks and panel discussions, highlighted basic, clinical, and translational research approaches, all of which contribute to the overarching goal of enhancing the pharmaceutical armamentarium for treating schizophrenia. This report surveys work by the vanguard of schizophrenia research in such topics as genetic and epigenetic approaches; small molecule therapeutics; and the relationships between target genes, neuronal function, and symptoms of schizophrenia. PMID:22032400

  17. Lysophospholipid receptors in drug discovery

    PubMed Central

    Kihara, Yasuyuki; Mizuno, Hirotaka; Chun, Jerold

    2014-01-01

    Lysophospholipids (LPs), including lysophosphatidic acid (LPA), sphingosine 1-phospate (S1P), lysophosphatidylinositol (LPI), and lysophosphatidylserine (LysoPS), are bioactive lipids that transduce signals through their specific cell-surface G protein-coupled receptors, LPA1–6, S1P1–5, LPI1, and LysoPS1–3, respectively. These LPs and their receptors have been implicated in both physiological and pathophysiological processes such as autoimmune diseases, neurodegenerative diseases, fibrosis, pain, cancer, inflammation, metabolic syndrome, bone formation, fertility, organismal development, and other effects on most organ systems. Advances in the LP receptor field have enabled the development of novel small molecules targeting LP receptors for several diseases. Most notably, fingolimod (FTY720, Gilenya, Novartis), an S1P receptor modulator, became the first FDA-approved medicine as an orally bioavailable drug for treating relapsing forms of multiple sclerosis. This success is currently being followed by multiple, mechanistically related compounds targeting S1P receptor subtypes, which are in various stages of clinical development. In addition, an LPA1 antagonist, BMS-986020 (Bristol-Myers Squibb), is in Phase 2 clinical development for treating idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis, as is a distinct compound, SAR100842 (Sanofi) for the treatment of systemic sclerosis and related fibrotic diseases. This review summarizes the current state of drug discovery in the LP receptor field. PMID:25499971

  18. West Nile Virus Drug Discovery

    PubMed Central

    Lim, Siew Pheng; Shi, Pei-Yong

    2013-01-01

    The outbreak of West Nile virus (WNV) in 1999 in the USA, and its continued spread throughout the Americas, parts of Europe, the Middle East and Africa, underscored the need for WNV antiviral development. Here, we review the current status of WNV drug discovery. A number of approaches have been used to search for inhibitors of WNV, including viral infection-based screening, enzyme-based screening, structure-based virtual screening, structure-based rationale design, and antibody-based therapy. These efforts have yielded inhibitors of viral or cellular factors that are critical for viral replication. For small molecule inhibitors, no promising preclinical candidate has been developed; most of the inhibitors could not even be advanced to the stage of hit-to-lead optimization due to their poor drug-like properties. However, several inhibitors developed for related members of the family Flaviviridae, such as dengue virus and hepatitis C virus, exhibited cross-inhibition of WNV, suggesting the possibility to re-purpose these antivirals for WNV treatment. Most promisingly, therapeutic antibodies have shown excellent efficacy in mouse model; one of such antibodies has been advanced into clinical trial. The knowledge accumulated during the past fifteen years has provided better rationale for the ongoing WNV and other flavivirus antiviral development. PMID:24300672

  19. Lysophospholipid receptors in drug discovery.

    PubMed

    Kihara, Yasuyuki; Mizuno, Hirotaka; Chun, Jerold

    2015-05-01

    Lysophospholipids (LPs), including lysophosphatidic acid (LPA), sphingosine 1-phospate (S1P), lysophosphatidylinositol (LPI), and lysophosphatidylserine (LysoPS), are bioactive lipids that transduce signals through their specific cell-surface G protein-coupled receptors, LPA1-6, S1P1-5, LPI1, and LysoPS1-3, respectively. These LPs and their receptors have been implicated in both physiological and pathophysiological processes such as autoimmune diseases, neurodegenerative diseases, fibrosis, pain, cancer, inflammation, metabolic syndrome, bone formation, fertility, organismal development, and other effects on most organ systems. Advances in the LP receptor field have enabled the development of novel small molecules targeting LP receptors for several diseases. Most notably, fingolimod (FTY720, Gilenya, Novartis), an S1P receptor modulator, became the first FDA-approved medicine as an orally bioavailable drug for treating relapsing forms of multiple sclerosis. This success is currently being followed by multiple, mechanistically related compounds targeting S1P receptor subtypes, which are in various stages of clinical development. In addition, an LPA1 antagonist, BMS-986020 (Bristol-Myers Squibb), is in Phase 2 clinical development for treating idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis, as a distinct compound, SAR100842 (Sanofi) for the treatment of systemic sclerosis and related fibrotic diseases. This review summarizes the current state of drug discovery in the LP receptor field. PMID:25499971

  20. Psychiatric Drugs May Reduce Ex-Prisoners' Violent Crime Rate

    MedlinePlus

    ... 161797.html Psychiatric Drugs May Reduce Ex-Prisoners' Violent Crime Rate Medications used to treat addiction cut ... Released prisoners may be less likely to commit violent crimes if they're prescribed certain kinds of ...

  1. TOXICOGENOMICS DRUG DISCOVERY AND THE PATHOLOGIST

    EPA Science Inventory

    Toxicogenomics, drug discovery, and pathologist.

    The field of toxicogenomics, which currently focuses on the application of large-scale differential gene expression (DGE) data to toxicology, is starting to influence drug discovery and development in the pharmaceutical indu...

  2. Bridging solubility between drug discovery and development.

    PubMed

    Di, Li; Fish, Paul V; Mano, Takashi

    2012-05-01

    Solubility has a crucial role in the success of a drug candidate. Compounds with low solubility not only cause problems for in vitro and in vivo assays, but also add significant burdens to drug development. Drug discovery and drug development often have different solubility screening requirements and methodologies have been developed to meet the needs of these different stages.

  3. Drug Discovery in Academia- the third way?

    PubMed Central

    Frearson, Julie; Wyatt, Paul

    2010-01-01

    As the pharmaceutical industry continues to re-strategise and focus on low-risk, relatively short term gains for the sake of survival, we need to re-invigorate the early stages of drug discovery and rebalance efforts towards novel modes of action therapeutics and neglected genetic and tropical diseases. Academic drug discovery is one model which offers the promise of new approaches and an alternative organisational culture for drug discovery as it attempts to apply academic innovation and thought processes to the challenge of discovering drugs to address real unmet need. PMID:20922062

  4. Modern drug discovery technologies: opportunities and challenges in lead discovery.

    PubMed

    Guido, Rafael V C; Oliva, Glaucius; Andricopulo, Adriano D

    2011-12-01

    The identification of promising hits and the generation of high quality leads are crucial steps in the early stages of drug discovery projects. The definition and assessment of both chemical and biological space have revitalized the screening process model and emphasized the importance of exploring the intrinsic complementary nature of classical and modern methods in drug research. In this context, the widespread use of combinatorial chemistry and sophisticated screening methods for the discovery of lead compounds has created a large demand for small organic molecules that act on specific drug targets. Modern drug discovery involves the employment of a wide variety of technologies and expertise in multidisciplinary research teams. The synergistic effects between experimental and computational approaches on the selection and optimization of bioactive compounds emphasize the importance of the integration of advanced technologies in drug discovery programs. These technologies (VS, HTS, SBDD, LBDD, QSAR, and so on) are complementary in the sense that they have mutual goals, thereby the combination of both empirical and in silico efforts is feasible at many different levels of lead optimization and new chemical entity (NCE) discovery. This paper provides a brief perspective on the evolution and use of key drug design technologies, highlighting opportunities and challenges. PMID:21843147

  5. Psychiatric gene discoveries shape evidence on ADHD's biology.

    PubMed

    Thapar, A; Martin, J; Mick, E; Arias Vásquez, A; Langley, K; Scherer, S W; Schachar, R; Crosbie, J; Williams, N; Franke, B; Elia, J; Glessner, J; Hakonarson, H; Owen, M J; Faraone, S V; O'Donovan, M C; Holmans, P

    2016-09-01

    A strong motivation for undertaking psychiatric gene discovery studies is to provide novel insights into unknown biology. Although attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) is highly heritable, and large, rare copy number variants (CNVs) contribute to risk, little is known about its pathogenesis and it remains commonly misunderstood. We assembled and pooled five ADHD and control CNV data sets from the United Kingdom, Ireland, United States of America, Northern Europe and Canada. Our aim was to test for enrichment of neurodevelopmental gene sets, implicated by recent exome-sequencing studies of (a) schizophrenia and (b) autism as a means of testing the hypothesis that common pathogenic mechanisms underlie ADHD and these other neurodevelopmental disorders. We also undertook hypothesis-free testing of all biological pathways. We observed significant enrichment of individual genes previously found to harbour schizophrenia de novo non-synonymous single-nucleotide variants (SNVs; P=5.4 × 10(-4)) and targets of the Fragile X mental retardation protein (P=0.0018). No enrichment was observed for activity-regulated cytoskeleton-associated protein (P=0.23) or N-methyl-D-aspartate receptor (P=0.74) post-synaptic signalling gene sets previously implicated in schizophrenia. Enrichment of ADHD CNV hits for genes impacted by autism de novo SNVs (P=0.019 for non-synonymous SNV genes) did not survive Bonferroni correction. Hypothesis-free testing yielded several highly significantly enriched biological pathways, including ion channel pathways. Enrichment findings were robust to multiple testing corrections and to sensitivity analyses that excluded the most significant sample. The findings reveal that CNVs in ADHD converge on biologically meaningful gene clusters, including ones now established as conferring risk of other neurodevelopmental disorders.

  6. Psychiatric gene discoveries shape evidence on ADHD's biology.

    PubMed

    Thapar, A; Martin, J; Mick, E; Arias Vásquez, A; Langley, K; Scherer, S W; Schachar, R; Crosbie, J; Williams, N; Franke, B; Elia, J; Glessner, J; Hakonarson, H; Owen, M J; Faraone, S V; O'Donovan, M C; Holmans, P

    2016-09-01

    A strong motivation for undertaking psychiatric gene discovery studies is to provide novel insights into unknown biology. Although attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) is highly heritable, and large, rare copy number variants (CNVs) contribute to risk, little is known about its pathogenesis and it remains commonly misunderstood. We assembled and pooled five ADHD and control CNV data sets from the United Kingdom, Ireland, United States of America, Northern Europe and Canada. Our aim was to test for enrichment of neurodevelopmental gene sets, implicated by recent exome-sequencing studies of (a) schizophrenia and (b) autism as a means of testing the hypothesis that common pathogenic mechanisms underlie ADHD and these other neurodevelopmental disorders. We also undertook hypothesis-free testing of all biological pathways. We observed significant enrichment of individual genes previously found to harbour schizophrenia de novo non-synonymous single-nucleotide variants (SNVs; P=5.4 × 10(-4)) and targets of the Fragile X mental retardation protein (P=0.0018). No enrichment was observed for activity-regulated cytoskeleton-associated protein (P=0.23) or N-methyl-D-aspartate receptor (P=0.74) post-synaptic signalling gene sets previously implicated in schizophrenia. Enrichment of ADHD CNV hits for genes impacted by autism de novo SNVs (P=0.019 for non-synonymous SNV genes) did not survive Bonferroni correction. Hypothesis-free testing yielded several highly significantly enriched biological pathways, including ion channel pathways. Enrichment findings were robust to multiple testing corrections and to sensitivity analyses that excluded the most significant sample. The findings reveal that CNVs in ADHD converge on biologically meaningful gene clusters, including ones now established as conferring risk of other neurodevelopmental disorders. PMID:26573769

  7. Psychiatric gene discoveries shape evidence on ADHD's biology

    PubMed Central

    Thapar, A; Martin, J; Mick, E; Arias Vásquez, A; Langley, K; Scherer, S W; Schachar, R; Crosbie, J; Williams, N; Franke, B; Elia, J; Glessner, J; Hakonarson, H; Owen, M J; Faraone, S V; O'Donovan, M C; Holmans, P

    2016-01-01

    A strong motivation for undertaking psychiatric gene discovery studies is to provide novel insights into unknown biology. Although attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) is highly heritable, and large, rare copy number variants (CNVs) contribute to risk, little is known about its pathogenesis and it remains commonly misunderstood. We assembled and pooled five ADHD and control CNV data sets from the United Kingdom, Ireland, United States of America, Northern Europe and Canada. Our aim was to test for enrichment of neurodevelopmental gene sets, implicated by recent exome-sequencing studies of (a) schizophrenia and (b) autism as a means of testing the hypothesis that common pathogenic mechanisms underlie ADHD and these other neurodevelopmental disorders. We also undertook hypothesis-free testing of all biological pathways. We observed significant enrichment of individual genes previously found to harbour schizophrenia de novo non-synonymous single-nucleotide variants (SNVs; P=5.4 × 10−4) and targets of the Fragile X mental retardation protein (P=0.0018). No enrichment was observed for activity-regulated cytoskeleton-associated protein (P=0.23) or N-methyl-D-aspartate receptor (P=0.74) post-synaptic signalling gene sets previously implicated in schizophrenia. Enrichment of ADHD CNV hits for genes impacted by autism de novo SNVs (P=0.019 for non-synonymous SNV genes) did not survive Bonferroni correction. Hypothesis-free testing yielded several highly significantly enriched biological pathways, including ion channel pathways. Enrichment findings were robust to multiple testing corrections and to sensitivity analyses that excluded the most significant sample. The findings reveal that CNVs in ADHD converge on biologically meaningful gene clusters, including ones now established as conferring risk of other neurodevelopmental disorders. PMID:26573769

  8. The role of serendipity in drug discovery.

    PubMed

    Ban, Thomas A

    2006-01-01

    Serendipity is one of the many factors that may contribute to drug discovery. It has played a role in the discovery of prototype psychotropic drugs that led to modern pharmacological treatment in psychiatry. It has also played a role in the discovery of several drugs that have had an impact on the development of psychiatry. "Serendipity" in drug discovery implies the finding of one thing while looking for something else. This was the case in six of the twelve serendipitous discoveries reviewed in this paper, i.e., aniline purple, penicillin, lysergic acid diethylamide, meprobamate, chlorpromazine, and imipramine. In the case of three drugs, i.e., potassium bromide, chloral hydrate, and lithium, the discovery was serendipitous because an utterly false rationale led to correct empirical results; and in case of two others, i.e., iproniazid and sildenafil, because valuable indications were found for these drugs which were not initially those sought The discovery of one of the twelve drugs, chlordiazepoxide, was sheer luck. PMID:17117615

  9. Antiepileptic drugs in the treatment of psychiatric disorders.

    PubMed

    Kaufman, Kenneth R

    2011-05-01

    The clinical interface between psychiatry and neurology is epilepsy; the pharmacological expression of this interface is antiepileptic drugs (AEDs), as they are used to treat both epilepsy and psychiatric disorders, especially bipolar disorders. The prevalence of psychiatric comorbidity and the risk of suicidal behavior/ideation/suicide are markedly increased in patients with epilepsy (PWE). Though AEDs receive initial indications for the treatment of epilepsy, currently the majority of AEDs are used to treat pain and psychiatric disorders. Thus in selecting the appropriate AEDs for treatment of PWE, consideration should be given to which AEDs best treat the epileptic disorder and the psychiatric comorbidity. This review is an overview of 21 AEDs in which negative psychotropic properties, approved indications in psychiatry, off-label studied uses in psychiatry, and principal uses in psychiatry are presented with literature review. A total of 40 psychiatric uses have been identified. Of the 21 AEDs reviewed, only 5 have U.S. Food and Drug Administration and/or European Medicines Agency psychiatric approval for limited uses; the majority of AEDs are used off-label. Many of these off-label uses are based on case reports, open-label studies, and poorly controlled or small-sample-size studies. In some instances, off-label use persists in the face of negative pivotal trials. Further placebo-controlled (augmentation and monotherapy) parallel-arm research with active comparators is required in the complex field of AED treatment of psychiatric disorders to minimize the treatment gap not only for PWE with psychiatric disorders, but also for psychiatric patients who would benefit from properly studied AEDs while minimizing adverse effects.

  10. The Collaborative Drug Discovery (CDD) database.

    PubMed

    Ekins, Sean; Bunin, Barry A

    2013-01-01

    The broad goals of Collaborative Drug Discovery (CDD) are to enable a collaborative "cloud-based" tool to be used to bring together neglected disease researchers and other researchers from usually separate areas, to collaborate and to share compounds and drug discovery data in the research community, which will ultimately result in long-term improvements in the research enterprise and health care delivery. This chapter briefly introduces CDD software and describes applications in antimalarial and tuberculosis research. PMID:23568469

  11. Scaffold Repurposing of Old Drugs Towards New Cancer Drug Discovery.

    PubMed

    Chen, Haijun; Wu, Jianlei; Gao, Yu; Chen, Haiying; Zhou, Jia

    2016-01-01

    As commented by the Nobelist James Black that "The most fruitful basis of the discovery of a new drug is to start with an old drug", drug repurposing represents an attractive drug discovery strategy. Despite the success of several repurposed drugs on the market, the ultimate therapeutic potential of a large number of non-cancer drugs is hindered during their repositioning due to various issues including the limited efficacy and intellectual property. With the increasing knowledge about the pharmacological properties and newly identified targets, the scaffolds of the old drugs emerge as a great treasure-trove towards new cancer drug discovery. In this review, we summarize the recent advances in the development of novel small molecules for cancer therapy by scaffold repurposing with highlighted examples. The relevant strategies, advantages, challenges and future research directions associated with this approach are also discussed.

  12. Helping Individuals Withdraw from Psychiatric Drugs

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Cohen, David

    2007-01-01

    Many counselors, psychologists, and social workers assist clients to take psychotropic drugs but recoil from helping clients to rethink drug use or stop taking drugs. They might fear resisting the prevailing ideology, violating "standards of care," or contradicting physicians' advice. This article discusses withdrawal emergent reactions from…

  13. Introduction to fragment-based drug discovery.

    PubMed

    Erlanson, Daniel A

    2012-01-01

    Fragment-based drug discovery (FBDD) has emerged in the past decade as a powerful tool for discovering drug leads. The approach first identifies starting points: very small molecules (fragments) that are about half the size of typical drugs. These fragments are then expanded or linked together to generate drug leads. Although the origins of the technique date back some 30 years, it was only in the mid-1990s that experimental techniques became sufficiently sensitive and rapid for the concept to be become practical. Since that time, the field has exploded: FBDD has played a role in discovery of at least 18 drugs that have entered the clinic, and practitioners of FBDD can be found throughout the world in both academia and industry. Literally dozens of reviews have been published on various aspects of FBDD or on the field as a whole, as have three books (Jahnke and Erlanson, Fragment-based approaches in drug discovery, 2006; Zartler and Shapiro, Fragment-based drug discovery: a practical approach, 2008; Kuo, Fragment based drug design: tools, practical approaches, and examples, 2011). However, this chapter will assume that the reader is approaching the field with little prior knowledge. It will introduce some of the key concepts, set the stage for the chapters to follow, and demonstrate how X-ray crystallography plays a central role in fragment identification and advancement. PMID:21695633

  14. Target deconvolution strategies in drug discovery.

    PubMed

    Terstappen, Georg C; Schlüpen, Christina; Raggiaschi, Roberto; Gaviraghi, Giovanni

    2007-11-01

    Recognition of some of the limitations of target-based drug discovery has recently led to the renaissance of a more holistic approach in which complex biological systems are investigated for phenotypic changes upon exposure to small molecules. The subsequent identification of the molecular targets that underlie an observed phenotypic response--termed target deconvolution--is an important aspect of current drug discovery, as knowledge of the molecular targets will greatly aid drug development. Here, the broad panel of experimental strategies that can be applied to target deconvolution is critically reviewed.

  15. Intercellular Lipid Mediators and GPCR Drug Discovery

    PubMed Central

    Im, Dong-Soon

    2013-01-01

    G-protein-coupled receptors (GPCR) are the largest superfamily of receptors responsible for signaling between cells and tissues, and because they play important physiological roles in homeostasis, they are major drug targets. New technologies have been developed for the identification of new ligands, new GPCR functions, and for drug discovery purposes. In particular, intercellular lipid mediators, such as, lysophosphatidic acid and sphingosine 1-phosphate have attracted much attention for drug discovery and this has resulted in the development of fingolimod (FTY-720) and AM095. The discovery of new intercellular lipid mediators and their GPCRs are discussed from the perspective of drug development. Lipid GPCRs for lysophospholipids, including lysophosphatidylserine, lysophosphatidylinositol, lysophosphatidylcholine, free fatty acids, fatty acid derivatives, and other lipid mediators are reviewed. PMID:24404331

  16. Virtual drug discovery: beyond computational chemistry?

    PubMed

    Gilardoni, Francois; Arvanites, Anthony C

    2010-02-01

    This editorial looks at how a fully integrated structure that performs all aspects in the drug discovery process, under one company, is slowly disappearing. The steps in the drug discovery paradigm have been slowly increasing toward virtuality or outsourcing at various phases of product development in a company's candidate pipeline. Each step in the process, such as target identification and validation and medicinal chemistry, can be managed by scientific teams within a 'virtual' company. Pharmaceutical companies to biotechnology start-ups have been quick in adopting this new research and development business strategy in order to gain flexibility, access the best technologies and technical expertise, and decrease product developmental costs. In today's financial climate, the term virtual drug discovery has an organizational meaning. It represents the next evolutionary step in outsourcing drug development.

  17. Catecholamine receptors: prototypes for GPCR-based drug discovery.

    PubMed

    Emery, Andrew C

    2013-01-01

    Drugs acting at G protein-coupled receptors (GPCRs) constitute ~40% of those in current clinical use. GPCR-based drug discovery remains at the forefront of drug development, especially for new treatments for psychiatric illness and neurological disease. Here, the basic framework of GPCR signaling learned through the elucidation of catecholamine receptor signaling through G proteins and β-arrestins, and X-ray crystallographic structure determination is reviewed. In silico docking studies developed in tandem with confirmatory empirical data gathering from binding and signaling experiments have allowed this basic framework to be expanded to drug hunting through predictive in silico searching as well as high-throughput and high-content screening approaches. For efforts moving forward for the deployment of new GPCR-acting drugs, collaborative efforts between industry and government/academic research in target validation at the molecular and cellular levels have become progressively more common. Polypharmacological approaches have become increasingly available for learning more about the mechanisms of GPCR-targeted drugs, based on interaction not with a single, but with a wide range of GPCR targets. These approaches are likely to aid in drug repurposing efforts, yield valuable insight on the side effects of currently employed drugs, and allow for a clearer picture of the actual targets of "atypical" drugs used in a variety of therapeutic contexts.

  18. Systems Pharmacology in Small Molecular Drug Discovery.

    PubMed

    Zhou, Wei; Wang, Yonghua; Lu, Aiping; Zhang, Ge

    2016-01-01

    Drug discovery is a risky, costly and time-consuming process depending on multidisciplinary methods to create safe and effective medicines. Although considerable progress has been made by high-throughput screening methods in drug design, the cost of developing contemporary approved drugs did not match that in the past decade. The major reason is the late-stage clinical failures in Phases II and III because of the complicated interactions between drug-specific, human body and environmental aspects affecting the safety and efficacy of a drug. There is a growing hope that systems-level consideration may provide a new perspective to overcome such current difficulties of drug discovery and development. The systems pharmacology method emerged as a holistic approach and has attracted more and more attention recently. The applications of systems pharmacology not only provide the pharmacodynamic evaluation and target identification of drug molecules, but also give a systems-level of understanding the interaction mechanism between drugs and complex disease. Therefore, the present review is an attempt to introduce how holistic systems pharmacology that integrated in silico ADME/T (i.e., absorption, distribution, metabolism, excretion and toxicity), target fishing and network pharmacology facilitates the discovery of small molecular drugs at the system level.

  19. Systems Pharmacology in Small Molecular Drug Discovery

    PubMed Central

    Zhou, Wei; Wang, Yonghua; Lu, Aiping; Zhang, Ge

    2016-01-01

    Drug discovery is a risky, costly and time-consuming process depending on multidisciplinary methods to create safe and effective medicines. Although considerable progress has been made by high-throughput screening methods in drug design, the cost of developing contemporary approved drugs did not match that in the past decade. The major reason is the late-stage clinical failures in Phases II and III because of the complicated interactions between drug-specific, human body and environmental aspects affecting the safety and efficacy of a drug. There is a growing hope that systems-level consideration may provide a new perspective to overcome such current difficulties of drug discovery and development. The systems pharmacology method emerged as a holistic approach and has attracted more and more attention recently. The applications of systems pharmacology not only provide the pharmacodynamic evaluation and target identification of drug molecules, but also give a systems-level of understanding the interaction mechanism between drugs and complex disease. Therefore, the present review is an attempt to introduce how holistic systems pharmacology that integrated in silico ADME/T (i.e., absorption, distribution, metabolism, excretion and toxicity), target fishing and network pharmacology facilitates the discovery of small molecular drugs at the system level. PMID:26901192

  20. Advancing drug discovery: a pharmaceutics perspective.

    PubMed

    Kwong, Elizabeth

    2015-03-01

    Current industry perspective of how discovery is conducted seems to be fragmented and does not have a unified overall outlook of how discovery challenges are being addressed. Consequently, well-defined processes and drug-likeness criteria are being viewed as "broken" and will not maintain future R&D productivity. In this commentary, an analysis of existing practices for defining successful development candidates resulted in a 5 "must do" list to help advance Drug Discovery as presented from a Pharmaceutics perspective. The 5 "must do" list includes: what an ideal discovery team model should look like, what criteria should be considered for the desired development candidate profile, what the building blocks of the development candidate should look like, and how to assess the development risks of the candidate.

  1. Drug treatment of psychiatric patients in general practice.

    PubMed

    Tyrer, P

    1978-10-01

    The prescribing of psychotropic drugs by general practitioners was assessed by analysing the drug treatment of all patients referred from general practice to a psychiatric outpatient clinic over four years. Of the 287 patients, 220 were taking one or more of 56 different psychotropic drugs at referral, diazepam being the most common. Benzodiazepines and barbiturates had been taken for significantly longer than other drugs, and, of a total of 342 drugs, 61 had been prescribed regularly for over a year. Half of the drugs were considered to be incorrectly prescribed on pharmacological grounds, the main errors being unnecessarily prolonged regular treatment, incorrect dosage (particularly common with antidepressants), and polypharmacy with drugs of similar pharmacological action. A basic grounding in the pharmacology of psychotropic drugs might help practitioners to avoid prescribing errors of this kind.

  2. Psychiatric Disorders and TRP Channels: Focus on Psychotropic Drugs.

    PubMed

    Nazıroğlu, Mustafa; Demirdaş, Arif

    2015-01-01

    Psychiatric and neurological disorders are mostly associated with the changes in neural calcium ion signaling pathways required for activity-triggered cellular events. One calcium channel family is the TRP cation channel family, which contains seven subfamilies. Results of recent papers have discovered that calcium ion influx through TRP channels is important. We discuss the latest advances in calcium ion influx through TRP channels in the etiology of psychiatric disorders. Activation of TRPC4, TRPC5, and TRPV1 cation channels in the etiology of psychiatric disorders such as anxiety, fear-associated responses, and depression modulate calcium ion influx. Evidence substantiates that anandamide and its analog (methanandamide) induce an anxiolytic-like effect via CB1 receptors and TRPV1 channels. Intracellular calcium influx induced by oxidative stress has an significant role in the etiology of bipolar disorders (BDs), and studies recently reported the important role of TRP channels such as TRPC3, TRPM2, and TRPV1 in converting oxidant or nitrogen radical signaling to cytosolic calcium ion homeostasis in BDs. The TRPV1 channel also plays a function in morphine tolerance and hyperalgesia. Among psychotropic drugs, amitriptyline and capsazepine seem to have protective effects on psychiatric disorders via the TRP channels. Some drugs such as cocaine and methamphetamine also seem to have an important role in alcohol addiction and substance abuse via activation of the TRPV1 channel. Thus, we explore the relationships between the etiology of psychiatric disorders and TRP channel-regulated mechanisms. Investigation of the TRP channels in psychiatric disorders holds the promise of the development of new drug treatments. PMID:26411768

  3. Psychiatric Disorders and TRP Channels: Focus on Psychotropic Drugs

    PubMed Central

    Nazıroğlu, Mustafa; Demirdaş, Arif

    2015-01-01

    Psychiatric and neurological disorders are mostly associated with the changes in neural calcium ion signaling pathways required for activity-triggered cellular events. One calcium channel family is the TRP cation channel family, which contains seven subfamilies. Results of recent papers have discovered that calcium ion influx through TRP channels is important. We discuss the latest advances in calcium ion influx through TRP channels in the etiology of psychiatric disorders. Activation of TRPC4, TRPC5, and TRPV1 cation channels in the etiology of psychiatric disorders such as anxiety, fear-associated responses, and depression modulate calcium ion influx. Evidence substantiates that anandamide and its analog (methanandamide) induce an anxiolytic-like effect via CB1 receptors and TRPV1 channels. Intracellular calcium influx induced by oxidative stress has an significant role in the etiology of bipolar disorders (BDs), and studies recently reported the important role of TRP channels such as TRPC3, TRPM2, and TRPV1 in converting oxidant or nitrogen radical signaling to cytosolic calcium ion homeostasis in BDs. The TRPV1 channel also plays a function in morphine tolerance and hyperalgesia. Among psychotropic drugs, amitriptyline and capsazepine seem to have protective effects on psychiatric disorders via the TRP channels. Some drugs such as cocaine and methamphetamine also seem to have an important role in alcohol addiction and substance abuse via activation of the TRPV1 channel. Thus, we explore the relationships between the etiology of psychiatric disorders and TRP channel-regulated mechanisms. Investigation of the TRP channels in psychiatric disorders holds the promise of the development of new drug treatments. PMID:26411768

  4. Antifungal drug discovery: the process and outcomes

    PubMed Central

    Calderone, Richard; Sun, Nuo; Gay-Andrieu, Francoise; Groutas, William; Weerawarna, Pathum; Prasad, Sridhar; Alex, Deepu; Li, Dongmei

    2014-01-01

    New data suggest that the global incidence of several types of fungal diseases have traditionally been under-documented. Of these, mortality caused by invasive fungal infections remains disturbingly high, equal to or exceeding deaths caused by drug-resistant tuberculosis and malaria. It is clear that basic research on new antifungal drugs, vaccines and diagnostic tools is needed. In this review, we focus upon antifungal drug discovery including in vitro assays, compound libraries and approaches to target identification. Genome mining has made it possible to identify fungal-specific targets; however, new compounds to these targets are apparently not in the antimicrobial pipeline. We suggest that ‘repurposing’ compounds (off patent) might be a more immediate starting point. Furthermore, we examine the dogma on antifungal discovery and suggest that a major thrust in technologies such as structural biology, homology modeling and virtual imaging is needed to drive discovery. PMID:25046525

  5. Using C. elegans for antimicrobial drug discovery

    PubMed Central

    Desalermos, Athanasios; Muhammed, Maged; Glavis-Bloom, Justin; Mylonakis, Eleftherios

    2011-01-01

    Introduction The number of microorganism strains with resistance to known antimicrobials is increasing. Therefore, there is a high demand for new, non-toxic and efficient antimicrobial agents. Research with the microscopic nematode Caenorhabditis elegans can address this high demand for the discovery of new antimicrobial compounds. In particular, C. elegans can be used as a model host for in vivo drug discovery through high-throughput screens of chemical libraries. Areas covered This review introduces the use of substitute model hosts and especially C. elegans in the study of microbial pathogenesis. The authors also highlight recently published literature on the role of C. elegans in drug discovery and outline its use as a promising host with unique advantages in the discovery of new antimicrobial drugs. Expert opinion C. elegans can be used, as a model host, to research many diseases, including fungal infections and Alzheimer’s disease. In addition, high-throughput techniques, for screening chemical libraries, can also be facilitated. Nevertheless, C. elegans and mammals have significant differences that both limit the use of the nematode in research and the degree by which results can be interpreted. That being said, the use of C. elegans in drug discovery still holds promise and the field continues to grow, with attempts to improve the methodology already underway. PMID:21686092

  6. Net present value approaches for drug discovery.

    PubMed

    Svennebring, Andreas M; Wikberg, Jarl Es

    2013-12-01

    Three dedicated approaches to the calculation of the risk-adjusted net present value (rNPV) in drug discovery projects under different assumptions are suggested. The probability of finding a candidate drug suitable for clinical development and the time to the initiation of the clinical development is assumed to be flexible in contrast to the previously used models. The rNPV of the post-discovery cash flows is calculated as the probability weighted average of the rNPV at each potential time of initiation of clinical development. Practical considerations how to set probability rates, in particular during the initiation and termination of a project is discussed.

  7. 50 years of hurdles and hope in anxiolytic drug discovery

    PubMed Central

    Griebel, Guy; Holmes, Andrew

    2014-01-01

    Anxiety disorders are the most prevalent group of psychiatric diseases, and have high personal and societal costs. The search for novel pharmacological treatments for these conditions is driven by the growing medical need to improve on the effectiveness and the side effect profile of existing drugs. A huge volume of data has been generated by anxiolytic drug discovery studies, which has led to the progression of numerous new molecules into clinical trials. However, the clinical outcome of these efforts has been disappointing, as promising results with novel agents in rodent studies have very rarely translated into effectiveness in humans. Here, we analyse the major trends from preclinical studies over the past 50 years conducted in the search for new drugs beyond those that target the prototypical anxiety-associated GABA (γ-aminobutyric acid)–benzodiazepine system, which have focused most intensively on the serotonin, neuropeptide, glutamate and endocannabinoid systems. We highlight various key issues that may have hampered progress in the field, and offer recommendations for how anxiolytic drug discovery can be more effective in the future. PMID:23989795

  8. Boesenbergia rotunda: From Ethnomedicine to Drug Discovery

    PubMed Central

    Eng-Chong, Tan; Yean-Kee, Lee; Chin-Fei, Chee; Choon-Han, Heh; Sher-Ming, Wong; Li-Ping, Christina Thio; Gen-Teck, Foo; Khalid, Norzulaani; Abd Rahman, Noorsaadah; Karsani, Saiful Anuar; Othman, Shatrah; Othman, Rozana; Yusof, Rohana

    2012-01-01

    Boesenbergia rotunda is a herb from the Boesenbergia genera under the Zingiberaceae family. B. rotunda is widely found in Asian countries where it is commonly used as a food ingredient and in ethnomedicinal preparations. The popularity of its ethnomedicinal usage has drawn the attention of scientists worldwide to further investigate its medicinal properties. Advancement in drug design and discovery research has led to the development of synthetic drugs from B. rotunda metabolites via bioinformatics and medicinal chemistry studies. Furthermore, with the advent of genomics, transcriptomics, proteomics, and metabolomics, new insights on the biosynthetic pathways of B. rotunda metabolites can be elucidated, enabling researchers to predict the potential bioactive compounds responsible for the medicinal properties of the plant. The vast biological activities exhibited by the compounds obtained from B. rotunda warrant further investigation through studies such as drug discovery, polypharmacology, and drug delivery using nanotechnology. PMID:23243448

  9. The discovery of drug-induced illness.

    PubMed

    Jick, H

    1977-03-01

    The increased use of drugs (and the concurrent increased risks of drug-induced illness) require definition of relevant research areas and strategy. For established marketed drugs, research needs depend on the magnitudes of risk of an illness from a drug and the base-line risk. With the drug risk high and the base-line risk low, the problem surfaces in premarketing studies or through the epidemic that develops after marketing. If the drug adds slightly to a high base-line risk, the effect is undetectable. When both risks are low, adverse effects can be discovered by chance, but systematic case-referent studies can speed discovery. If both risks are high, clinical trials and nonexperimental studies may be used. With both risks intermediate, systematic evaluations, especially case-referent studies are needed. Newly marketed drugs should be routinely evaluated through compulsory registration and follow-up study of the earliest users.

  10. Arthritis Genetics Analysis Aids Drug Discovery

    MedlinePlus

    ... biological insights for drug discovery,” Plenge says. —by Carol Torgan, Ph.D. Related Links Gut Microbes Linked ... Assistant Editors: Vicki Contie, Tianna Hicklin, Ph.D., Carol Torgan, Ph.D. NIH Research Matters is a ...

  11. Open drug discovery for the Zika virus.

    PubMed

    Ekins, Sean; Mietchen, Daniel; Coffee, Megan; Stratton, Thomas P; Freundlich, Joel S; Freitas-Junior, Lucio; Muratov, Eugene; Siqueira-Neto, Jair; Williams, Antony J; Andrade, Carolina

    2016-01-01

    The Zika virus (ZIKV) outbreak in the Americas has caused global concern that we may be on the brink of a healthcare crisis. The lack of research on ZIKV in the over 60 years that we have known about it has left us with little in the way of starting points for drug discovery. Our response can build on previous efforts with virus outbreaks and lean heavily on work done on other flaviviruses such as dengue virus. We provide some suggestions of what might be possible and propose an open drug discovery effort that mobilizes global science efforts and provides leadership, which thus far has been lacking. We also provide a listing of potential resources and molecules that could be prioritized for testing as in vitro assays for ZIKV are developed. We propose also that in order to incentivize drug discovery, a neglected disease priority review voucher should be available to those who successfully develop an FDA approved treatment. Learning from the response to the ZIKV, the approaches to drug discovery used and the success and failures will be critical for future infectious disease outbreaks.

  12. Open drug discovery for the Zika virus

    PubMed Central

    Ekins, Sean; Mietchen, Daniel; Coffee, Megan; Stratton, Thomas P; Freundlich, Joel S; Freitas-Junior, Lucio; Muratov, Eugene; Siqueira-Neto, Jair; Williams, Antony J; Andrade, Carolina

    2016-01-01

    The Zika virus (ZIKV) outbreak in the Americas has caused global concern that we may be on the brink of a healthcare crisis. The lack of research on ZIKV in the over 60 years that we have known about it has left us with little in the way of starting points for drug discovery. Our response can build on previous efforts with virus outbreaks and lean heavily on work done on other flaviviruses such as dengue virus. We provide some suggestions of what might be possible and propose an open drug discovery effort that mobilizes global science efforts and provides leadership, which thus far has been lacking. We also provide a listing of potential resources and molecules that could be prioritized for testing as in vitro assays for ZIKV are developed. We propose also that in order to incentivize drug discovery, a neglected disease priority review voucher should be available to those who successfully develop an FDA approved treatment. Learning from the response to the ZIKV, the approaches to drug discovery used and the success and failures will be critical for future infectious disease outbreaks. PMID:27134728

  13. Comment on "drug discovery: turning the titanic".

    PubMed

    Lesterhuis, W Joost; Bosco, Anthony; Lake, Richard A

    2014-03-26

    The pathobiology-based approach to research and development has been the dominant paradigm for successful drug discovery over the last decades. We propose that the molecular and cellular events that govern a resolving, rather than an evolving, disease may reveal new druggable pathways.

  14. Open drug discovery for the Zika virus.

    PubMed

    Ekins, Sean; Mietchen, Daniel; Coffee, Megan; Stratton, Thomas P; Freundlich, Joel S; Freitas-Junior, Lucio; Muratov, Eugene; Siqueira-Neto, Jair; Williams, Antony J; Andrade, Carolina

    2016-01-01

    The Zika virus (ZIKV) outbreak in the Americas has caused global concern that we may be on the brink of a healthcare crisis. The lack of research on ZIKV in the over 60 years that we have known about it has left us with little in the way of starting points for drug discovery. Our response can build on previous efforts with virus outbreaks and lean heavily on work done on other flaviviruses such as dengue virus. We provide some suggestions of what might be possible and propose an open drug discovery effort that mobilizes global science efforts and provides leadership, which thus far has been lacking. We also provide a listing of potential resources and molecules that could be prioritized for testing as in vitro assays for ZIKV are developed. We propose also that in order to incentivize drug discovery, a neglected disease priority review voucher should be available to those who successfully develop an FDA approved treatment. Learning from the response to the ZIKV, the approaches to drug discovery used and the success and failures will be critical for future infectious disease outbreaks. PMID:27134728

  15. REDOR NMR for Drug Discovery

    PubMed Central

    Cegelski, Lynette

    2014-01-01

    Rotational-Echo DOuble-Resonance (REDOR) NMR is a powerful and versatile solid-state NMR measurement that has been recruited to elucidate drug modes of action and to drive the design of new therapeutics. REDOR has been implemented to examine composition, structure, and dynamics in diverse macromolecular and whole-cell systems, including taxol-bound microtubules, enzyme-cofactor-inhibitor ternary complexes, and antibiotic-whole-cell complexes. The REDOR approach involves the integrated design of specific isotopic labeling strategies and the selection of appropriate REDOR experiments. By way of example, this digest illustrates the versatility of the REDOR approach, with an emphasis on the practical considerations of experimental design and data interpretation. PMID:24035486

  16. Biomimicry as a basis for drug discovery.

    PubMed

    Kolb, V M

    1998-01-01

    Selected works are discussed which clearly demonstrate that mimicking various aspects of the process by which natural products evolved is becoming a powerful tool in contemporary drug discovery. Natural products are an established and rich source of drugs. The term "natural product" is often used synonymously with "secondary metabolite." Knowledge of genetics and molecular evolution helps us understand how biosynthesis of many classes of secondary metabolites evolved. One proposed hypothesis is termed "inventive evolution." It invokes duplication of genes, and mutation of the gene copies, among other genetic events. The modified duplicate genes, per se or in conjunction with other genetic events, may give rise to new enzymes, which, in turn, may generate new products, some of which may be selected for. Steps of the inventive evolution can be mimicked in several ways for purpose of drug discovery. For example, libraries of chemical compounds of any imaginable structure may be produced by combinatorial synthesis. Out of these libraries new active compounds can be selected. In another example, genetic system can be manipulated to produce modified natural products ("unnatural natural products"), from which new drugs can be selected. In some instances, similar natural products turn up in species that are not direct descendants of each other. This is presumably due to a horizontal gene transfer. The mechanism of this inter-species gene transfer can be mimicked in therapeutic gene delivery. Mimicking specifics or principles of chemical evolution including experimental and test-tube evolution also provides leads for new drug discovery.

  17. Drug discovery dilemma and Cura quartet collaboration.

    PubMed

    Shah, Salim; Federoff, Howard J

    2009-11-01

    Many parties contribute to discovery of new drugs - academic researchers, industry scientists, government agencies, and disease foundation helping to corral the resources necessary to sustain research efforts - but it has never been more apparent until now that these parties must work together to accomplish the shared goal of improving health. At a recent conference at the Georgetown University Medical Center, a group of prominent scientists from the academic, industry, government and disease advocacy communities came together to discuss new paths forward for stronger inter-institutional collaboration to establish a framework for translating new discoveries into drugs, improving proof of concept (PoC) studies, and reducing attrition at the clinical stage of drug development. PMID:19815089

  18. Flow Cytometry: Impact on Early Drug Discovery.

    PubMed

    Edwards, Bruce S; Sklar, Larry A

    2015-07-01

    Modern flow cytometers can make optical measurements of 10 or more parameters per cell at tens of thousands of cells per second and more than five orders of magnitude dynamic range. Although flow cytometry is used in most drug discovery stages, "sip-and-spit" sampling technology has restricted it to low-sample-throughput applications. The advent of HyperCyt sampling technology has recently made possible primary screening applications in which tens of thousands of compounds are analyzed per day. Target-multiplexing methodologies in combination with extended multiparameter analyses enable profiling of lead candidates early in the discovery process, when the greatest numbers of candidates are available for evaluation. The ability to sample small volumes with negligible waste reduces reagent costs, compound usage, and consumption of cells. Improved compound library formatting strategies can further extend primary screening opportunities when samples are scarce. Dozens of targets have been screened in 384- and 1536-well assay formats, predominantly in academic screening lab settings. In concert with commercial platform evolution and trending drug discovery strategies, HyperCyt-based systems are now finding their way into mainstream screening labs. Recent advances in flow-based imaging, mass spectrometry, and parallel sample processing promise dramatically expanded single-cell profiling capabilities to bolster systems-level approaches to drug discovery.

  19. Flow Cytometry: Impact On Early Drug Discovery

    PubMed Central

    Edwards, Bruce S.; Sklar, Larry A.

    2015-01-01

    Summary Modern flow cytometers can make optical measurements of 10 or more parameters per cell at tens-of-thousands of cells per second and over five orders of magnitude dynamic range. Although flow cytometry is used in most drug discovery stages, “sip-and-spit” sampling technology has restricted it to low sample throughput applications. The advent of HyperCyt sampling technology has recently made possible primary screening applications in which tens-of-thousands of compounds are analyzed per day. Target-multiplexing methodologies in combination with extended multi-parameter analyses enable profiling of lead candidates early in the discovery process, when the greatest numbers of candidates are available for evaluation. The ability to sample small volumes with negligible waste reduces reagent costs, compound usage and consumption of cells. Improved compound library formatting strategies can further extend primary screening opportunities when samples are scarce. Dozens of targets have been screened in 384- and 1536-well assay formats, predominantly in academic screening lab settings. In concert with commercial platform evolution and trending drug discovery strategies, HyperCyt-based systems are now finding their way into mainstream screening labs. Recent advances in flow-based imaging, mass spectrometry and parallel sample processing promise dramatically expanded single cell profiling capabilities to bolster systems level approaches to drug discovery. PMID:25805180

  20. Antibacterial drug discovery in the resistance era.

    PubMed

    Brown, Eric D; Wright, Gerard D

    2016-01-21

    The looming antibiotic-resistance crisis has penetrated the consciousness of clinicians, researchers, policymakers, politicians and the public at large. The evolution and widespread distribution of antibiotic-resistance elements in bacterial pathogens has made diseases that were once easily treatable deadly again. Unfortunately, accompanying the rise in global resistance is a failure in antibacterial drug discovery. Lessons from the history of antibiotic discovery and fresh understanding of antibiotic action and the cell biology of microorganisms have the potential to deliver twenty-first century medicines that are able to control infection in the resistance era. PMID:26791724

  1. Antibacterial drug discovery in the resistance era.

    PubMed

    Brown, Eric D; Wright, Gerard D

    2016-01-21

    The looming antibiotic-resistance crisis has penetrated the consciousness of clinicians, researchers, policymakers, politicians and the public at large. The evolution and widespread distribution of antibiotic-resistance elements in bacterial pathogens has made diseases that were once easily treatable deadly again. Unfortunately, accompanying the rise in global resistance is a failure in antibacterial drug discovery. Lessons from the history of antibiotic discovery and fresh understanding of antibiotic action and the cell biology of microorganisms have the potential to deliver twenty-first century medicines that are able to control infection in the resistance era.

  2. Synthetic biology for pharmaceutical drug discovery.

    PubMed

    Trosset, Jean-Yves; Carbonell, Pablo

    2015-01-01

    Synthetic biology (SB) is an emerging discipline, which is slowly reorienting the field of drug discovery. For thousands of years, living organisms such as plants were the major source of human medicines. The difficulty in resynthesizing natural products, however, often turned pharmaceutical industries away from this rich source for human medicine. More recently, progress on transformation through genetic manipulation of biosynthetic units in microorganisms has opened the possibility of in-depth exploration of the large chemical space of natural products derivatives. Success of SB in drug synthesis culminated with the bioproduction of artemisinin by microorganisms, a tour de force in protein and metabolic engineering. Today, synthetic cells are not only used as biofactories but also used as cell-based screening platforms for both target-based and phenotypic-based approaches. Engineered genetic circuits in synthetic cells are also used to decipher disease mechanisms or drug mechanism of actions and to study cell-cell communication within bacteria consortia. This review presents latest developments of SB in the field of drug discovery, including some challenging issues such as drug resistance and drug toxicity. PMID:26673570

  3. Synthetic biology for pharmaceutical drug discovery

    PubMed Central

    Trosset, Jean-Yves; Carbonell, Pablo

    2015-01-01

    Synthetic biology (SB) is an emerging discipline, which is slowly reorienting the field of drug discovery. For thousands of years, living organisms such as plants were the major source of human medicines. The difficulty in resynthesizing natural products, however, often turned pharmaceutical industries away from this rich source for human medicine. More recently, progress on transformation through genetic manipulation of biosynthetic units in microorganisms has opened the possibility of in-depth exploration of the large chemical space of natural products derivatives. Success of SB in drug synthesis culminated with the bioproduction of artemisinin by microorganisms, a tour de force in protein and metabolic engineering. Today, synthetic cells are not only used as biofactories but also used as cell-based screening platforms for both target-based and phenotypic-based approaches. Engineered genetic circuits in synthetic cells are also used to decipher disease mechanisms or drug mechanism of actions and to study cell–cell communication within bacteria consortia. This review presents latest developments of SB in the field of drug discovery, including some challenging issues such as drug resistance and drug toxicity. PMID:26673570

  4. In vivo brain microdialysis: advances in neuropsychopharmacology and drug discovery

    PubMed Central

    Darvesh, Altaf S.; Carroll, Richard T.; Geldenhuys, Werner J.; Gudelsky, Gary A.; Klein, Jochen; Meshul, Charles K.; Van der Schyf, Cornelis J.

    2010-01-01

    Introduction Microdialysis is an important in vivo sampling technique, useful in the assay of extracellular tissue fluid. The technique has both pre-clinical and clinical applications but is most widely used in neuroscience. The in vivo microdialysis technique allows measurement of neurotransmitters such as acetycholine (ACh), the biogenic amines including dopamine (DA), norepinephrine (NE) and serotonin (5-HT), amino acids such as glutamate (Glu) and gamma aminobutyric acid (GABA), as well as the metabolites of the aforementioned neurotransmitters, and neuropeptides in neuronal extracellular fluid in discrete brain regions of laboratory animals such as rodents and non-human primates. Areas covered In this review we present a brief overview of the principles and procedures related to in vivo microdialysis and detail the use of this technique in the pre-clinical measurement of drugs designed to be used in the treatment of chemical addiction, neurodegenerative diseases such as Alzheimer’s disease (AD), Parkinson’s disease (PD) and as well as psychiatric disorders such as attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) and schizophrenia. This review offers insight into the tremendous utility and versatility of this technique in pursuing neuropharmacological investigations as well its significant potential in rational drug discovery. Expert opinion In vivo microdialysis is an extremely versatile technique, routinely used in the neuropharmacological investigation of drugs used for the treatment of neurological disorders. This technique has been a boon in the elucidation of the neurochemical profile and mechanism of action of several classes of drugs especially their effects on neurotransmitter systems. The exploitation and development of this technique for drug discovery in the near future will enable investigational new drug candidates to be rapidly moved into the clinical trial stages and to market thus providing new successful therapies for neurological diseases

  5. PRN prescribing in psychiatric inpatients: potential for pharmacokinetic drug interactions.

    PubMed

    Davies, Simon J C; Lennard, Martin S; Ghahramani, Parviz; Pratt, Peter; Robertson, Andrea; Potokar, John

    2007-03-01

    Medications are commonly prescribed to psychiatric inpatients on a PRN (pro re nata/as required) basis, allowing drugs to be administered on patient request or at nurses' discretion for psychiatric symptoms, treatment side effects or physical complaints. However, there has been no formal study of the pharmacokinetic implications of PRN prescribing. The objective of the study was to determine the prevalence of PRN drug prescription and administration, and to assess the potential for interactions involving CYP2D6 and CYP3A4 between drugs prescribed and administered to inpatients on psychiatry wards.A cross-sectional survey of prescriptions on general adult and functional elderly psychiatric wards in one city was carried out. Data were recorded from prescription charts of 323 inpatients (236 on general adult and 87 on functional elderly wards). Of 2089 prescriptions, 997 (48%) of prescriptions were on a PRN basis (most commonly benzodiazepines and other hypnotic agents, antipsychotics, analgesics and anticholinergic agents), but only 143 (14%) of these had been administered in the previous 24 hours. One fifth of patients were prescribed drug combinations interacting with CYP2D6 or CYP3A4 of potential clinical importance which included one or more drugs prescribed on a PRN basis.PRN prescribing is common among inpatients in psychiatry, and may lead to cytochrome P450 mediated interactions. Prescribers should be aware of the potential for unpredictability in plasma concentrations, side effects and efficacy which PRN prescribing may cause through these interactions, particularly in old age psychiatry and in treatment of acute psychosis.

  6. Microscopic imaging techniques for drug discovery.

    PubMed

    Bullen, Andrew

    2008-01-01

    Microscopic imaging can enhance the drug discovery process by helping to describe how disease processes unfold and how potential therapies might intervene. Recently introduced technologies, and enhancements to existing techniques, are addressing technical issues that have limited the usefulness of microscopic imaging in the past. In particular, these innovations are improving spatial resolution, increasing tissue penetration, overcoming physical access issues and enhancing experimental throughput. Notable recent trends, which are discussed in this article, include the development of super-resolution microscopes, the incorporation of multiphoton techniques into intravital and fibre-optic microscopy and the automation of microscopy and image analysis for high-content screening. Together, these developments are augmenting the existing assays and disease models that are used in early drug discovery and, in some cases, enabling new ones.

  7. Experiences in fragment-based drug discovery.

    PubMed

    Murray, Christopher W; Verdonk, Marcel L; Rees, David C

    2012-05-01

    Fragment-based drug discovery (FBDD) has become established in both industry and academia as an alternative approach to high-throughput screening for the generation of chemical leads for drug targets. In FBDD, specialised detection methods are used to identify small chemical compounds (fragments) that bind to the drug target, and structural biology is usually employed to establish their binding mode and to facilitate their optimisation. In this article, we present three recent and successful case histories in FBDD. We then re-examine the key concepts and challenges of FBDD with particular emphasis on recent literature and our own experience from a substantial number of FBDD applications. Our opinion is that careful application of FBDD is living up to its promise of delivering high quality leads with good physical properties and that in future many drug molecules will be derived from fragment-based approaches. PMID:22459076

  8. Novel Directions for Diabetes Mellitus Drug Discovery

    PubMed Central

    Maiese, Kenneth; Chong, Zhao Zhong; Shang, Yan Chen; Wang, Shaohui

    2012-01-01

    Introduction Diabetes mellitus impacts almost 200 million individuals worldwide and leads to debilitating complications. New avenues of drug discovery must target the underlying cellular processes of oxidative stress, apoptosis, autophagy, and inflammation that can mediate multi-system pathology during diabetes mellitus. Areas Covered We examine novel directions for drug discovery that involve the β-nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide (NAD+) precursor nicotinamide, the cytokine erythropoietin, the NAD+-dependent protein histone deacetylase SIRT1, the serine/threonine-protein kinase mammalian target of rapamycin (mTOR), and the wingless pathway. Implications for the targeting of these pathways that oversee gluconeogenic genes, insulin signaling and resistance, fatty acid beta-oxidation, inflammation, and cellular survival are presented. Expert Opinion Nicotinamide, erythropoietin, and the downstram pathways of SIRT1, mTOR, forkhead transcription factors, and wingless signaling offer exciting prospects for novel directions of drug discovery for the treatment of metabolic disorders. Future investigations must dissect the complex relationship and fine modulation of these pathways for the successful translation of robust reparative and regenerative strategies against diabetes mellitus and the complications of this disorder. PMID:23092114

  9. New paradigms in GPCR drug discovery.

    PubMed

    Jacobson, Kenneth A

    2015-12-15

    G protein-coupled receptors (GPCRs) remain a major domain of pharmaceutical discovery. The identification of GPCR lead compounds and their optimization are now structure-based, thanks to advances in X-ray crystallography, molecular modeling, protein engineering and biophysical techniques. In silico screening provides useful hit molecules. New pharmacological approaches to tuning the pleotropic action of GPCRs include: allosteric modulators, biased ligands, GPCR heterodimer-targeted compounds, manipulation of polypharmacology, receptor antibodies and tailoring of drug molecules to fit GPCR pharmacogenomics. Measurements of kinetics and drug efficacy are factors influencing clinical success. With the exception of inhibitors of GPCR kinases, targeting of intracellular GPCR signaling or receptor cycling for therapeutic purposes remains a futuristic concept. New assay approaches are more efficient and multidimensional: cell-based, label-free, fluorescence-based assays, and biosensors. Tailoring GPCR drugs to a patient's genetic background is now being considered. Chemoinformatic tools can predict ADME-tox properties. New imaging technology visualizes drug action in vivo. Thus, there is reason to be optimistic that new technology for GPCR ligand discovery will help reverse the current narrowing of the pharmaceutical pipeline.

  10. [Drug therapy and the most common drugs for childhood psychiatric disorders].

    PubMed

    Puustjärvi, Anita; Raunio, Hannu; Lecklin, Anne; Kumpulainen, Kirsti

    2016-01-01

    Psychotropic drugs are more commonly prescribed for children, although scientific evidence about psychotrophic medication and long-term effects thereof in children is scarce. The drugs are often used off-label. ADHD drugs, antipsychotics and antidepressants and melatonin are the most commonly used drugs. ADHD medication possesses the most established status. Antipsychotic drugs are utilized for the treatment of psychoses, bipolar disorder, and conduct disorder symptoms in particular. Antidepressants are utilized for the treatment of childhood depression and anxiety disorders, melatonin for the treatment of children's sleep problems. Drug therapy should always be carried out as part of other psychiatric therapy. PMID:27382830

  11. Financing drug discovery for orphan diseases.

    PubMed

    Fagnan, David E; Gromatzky, Austin A; Stein, Roger M; Fernandez, Jose-Maria; Lo, Andrew W

    2014-05-01

    Recently proposed 'megafund' financing methods for funding translational medicine and drug development require billions of dollars in capital per megafund to de-risk the drug discovery process enough to issue long-term bonds. Here, we demonstrate that the same financing methods can be applied to orphan drug development but, because of the unique nature of orphan diseases and therapeutics (lower development costs, faster FDA approval times, lower failure rates and lower correlation of failures among disease targets) the amount of capital needed to de-risk such portfolios is much lower in this field. Numerical simulations suggest that an orphan disease megafund of only US$575 million can yield double-digit expected rates of return with only 10-20 projects in the portfolio. PMID:24269746

  12. Financing drug discovery for orphan diseases.

    PubMed

    Fagnan, David E; Gromatzky, Austin A; Stein, Roger M; Fernandez, Jose-Maria; Lo, Andrew W

    2014-05-01

    Recently proposed 'megafund' financing methods for funding translational medicine and drug development require billions of dollars in capital per megafund to de-risk the drug discovery process enough to issue long-term bonds. Here, we demonstrate that the same financing methods can be applied to orphan drug development but, because of the unique nature of orphan diseases and therapeutics (lower development costs, faster FDA approval times, lower failure rates and lower correlation of failures among disease targets) the amount of capital needed to de-risk such portfolios is much lower in this field. Numerical simulations suggest that an orphan disease megafund of only US$575 million can yield double-digit expected rates of return with only 10-20 projects in the portfolio.

  13. Screening technologies for ion channel drug discovery.

    PubMed

    Terstappen, Georg C; Roncarati, Renza; Dunlop, John; Peri, Ravikumar

    2010-05-01

    For every movement, heartbeat and thought, ion channels need to open and close. It is therefore not surprising that their malfunctioning leads to serious diseases. Currently, only approximately 10% of drugs, with a market value in excess of US$10 billion, act on ion channels. The systematic exploitation of this target class has started, enabled by novel assay technologies and fundamental advances of the structural and mechanistic understanding of channel function. The latter, which was rewarded with the Nobel Prize in 2003, has opened up an avenue for rational drug design. In this review we provide an overview of the current repertoire of screening technologies that has evolved to drive ion channel-targeted drug discovery towards new medicines of the future.

  14. Serendipity in Cancer Drug Discovery: Rational or Coincidence?

    PubMed

    Prasad, Sahdeo; Gupta, Subash C; Aggarwal, Bharat B

    2016-06-01

    Novel drug development leading to final approval by the US FDA can cost as much as two billion dollars. Why the cost of novel drug discovery is so expensive is unclear, but high failure rates at the preclinical and clinical stages are major reasons. Although therapies targeting a given cell signaling pathway or a protein have become prominent in drug discovery, such treatments have done little in preventing or treating any disease alone because most chronic diseases have been found to be multigenic. A review of the discovery of numerous drugs currently being used for various diseases including cancer, diabetes, cardiovascular, pulmonary, and autoimmune diseases indicates that serendipity has played a major role in the discovery. In this review we provide evidence that rational drug discovery and targeted therapies have minimal roles in drug discovery, and that serendipity and coincidence have played and continue to play major roles. The primary focus in this review is on cancer-related drug discovery. PMID:27083322

  15. Serendipity in Cancer Drug Discovery: Rational or Coincidence?

    PubMed

    Prasad, Sahdeo; Gupta, Subash C; Aggarwal, Bharat B

    2016-06-01

    Novel drug development leading to final approval by the US FDA can cost as much as two billion dollars. Why the cost of novel drug discovery is so expensive is unclear, but high failure rates at the preclinical and clinical stages are major reasons. Although therapies targeting a given cell signaling pathway or a protein have become prominent in drug discovery, such treatments have done little in preventing or treating any disease alone because most chronic diseases have been found to be multigenic. A review of the discovery of numerous drugs currently being used for various diseases including cancer, diabetes, cardiovascular, pulmonary, and autoimmune diseases indicates that serendipity has played a major role in the discovery. In this review we provide evidence that rational drug discovery and targeted therapies have minimal roles in drug discovery, and that serendipity and coincidence have played and continue to play major roles. The primary focus in this review is on cancer-related drug discovery.

  16. Current Landscape of Antiviral Drug Discovery

    PubMed Central

    Blair, Wade; Cox, Christopher

    2016-01-01

    Continued discovery and development of new antiviral medications are paramount for global human health, particularly as new pathogens emerge and old ones evolve to evade current therapeutic agents. Great success has been achieved in developing effective therapies to suppress human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) and hepatitis B virus (HBV); however, the therapies are not curative and therefore current efforts in HIV and HBV drug discovery are directed toward longer-acting therapies and/or developing new mechanisms of action that could potentially lead to cure, or eradication, of the virus. Recently, exciting early clinical data have been reported for novel antivirals targeting respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) and influenza (flu). Preclinical data suggest that these new approaches may be effective in treating high-risk patients afflicted with serious RSV or flu infections. In this review, we highlight new directions in antiviral approaches for HIV, HBV, and acute respiratory virus infections. PMID:26962437

  17. Matched molecular pair analysis in drug discovery.

    PubMed

    Dossetter, Alexander G; Griffen, Edward J; Leach, Andrew G

    2013-08-01

    Multiple parameter optimisation in drug discovery is difficult, but Matched Molecular Pair Analysis (MMPA) can help. Computer algorithms can process data in an unbiased way to yield design rules and suggest better molecules, cutting the number of design cycles. The approach often makes more suggestions than can be processed manually and methods to deal with this are proposed. However, there is a paucity of contextually specific design rules, which would truly make the technique powerful. By combining extracted information from multiple sources there is an opportunity to solve this problem and advance medicinal chemistry in a matter of months rather than years. PMID:23557664

  18. iPSCs in Cardiovascular Drug Discovery

    PubMed Central

    Mercola, Mark; Colas, Alexandre; Willems, Erik

    2013-01-01

    The unexpected discovery that somatic cells can be reprogrammed to a pluripotent state yielding induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs) has made it possible to produce cardiovascular cells exhibiting inherited traits and disorders. Use of these cells in high throughput analyses should broaden our insight into fundamental disease mechanisms and provide many benefits for patients, including new therapeutics and individually tailored therapies. Here we review recent progress in generating iPSC-based models of cardiovascular disease and their multiple applications in drug development. PMID:23371902

  19. Drug to genome to drug: discovery of new antiplasmodial compounds.

    PubMed

    Beghyn, Terence B; Charton, Julie; Leroux, Florence; Laconde, Guillaume; Bourin, Arnaud; Cos, Paul; Maes, Louis; Deprez, Benoit

    2011-05-12

    The dominant strategy for discovery of new antimalarial drugs relies on cell-free assays on specific biochemical pathways of Plasmodium falciparum . However, it appears that screening directly on the parasite is a more rewarding approach. The "drug to genome to drug" approach consists of testing a small set of structural analogues of a drug acting on human proteins that have plasmodial orthologues. Both man and plasmodium possess cyclic nucleotide phosphodiesterases (PDEs) that are key players of cell homeostasis. We synthesized and tested 40 analogues of tadalafil, a human PDE5 inhibitor, on P. falciparum in culture and obtained potent inhibitors of parasite growth. We discuss the structure-activity relationships, which support the hypothesis that our compounds kill the parasite via inhibition of plasmodial PDE activity. We also prove that antiplasmodial derivatives inhibit the hydrolysis of cyclic nucleotides of the parasite, validating the cAMP/cGMP pathways as therapeutic targets against Plasmodium falciparum.

  20. Spider venomics: implications for drug discovery.

    PubMed

    Pineda, Sandy S; Undheim, Eivind A B; Rupasinghe, Darshani B; Ikonomopoulou, Maria P; King, Glenn F

    2014-10-01

    Over a period of more than 300 million years, spiders have evolved complex venoms containing an extraordinary array of toxins for prey capture and defense against predators. The major components of most spider venoms are small disulfide-bridged peptides that are highly stable and resistant to proteolytic degradation. Moreover, many of these peptides have high specificity and potency toward molecular targets of therapeutic importance. This unique combination of bioactivity and stability has made spider-venom peptides valuable both as pharmacological tools and as leads for drug development. This review describes recent advances in spider-venom-based drug discovery pipelines. We discuss spider-venom-derived peptides that are currently under investigation for treatment of a diverse range of pathologies including pain, stroke and cancer.

  1. Financing drug discovery via dynamic leverage.

    PubMed

    Montazerhodjat, Vahid; Frishkopf, John J; Lo, Andrew W

    2016-03-01

    We extend the megafund concept for funding drug discovery to enable dynamic leverage in which the portfolio of candidate therapeutic assets is predominantly financed initially by equity, and debt is introduced gradually as assets mature and begin generating cash flows. Leverage is adjusted so as to maintain an approximately constant level of default risk throughout the life of the fund. Numerical simulations show that applying dynamic leverage to a small portfolio of orphan drug candidates can boost the return on equity almost twofold compared with securitization with a static capital structure. Dynamic leverage can also add significant value to comparable all-equity-financed portfolios, enhancing the return on equity without jeopardizing debt performance or increasing risk to equity investors. PMID:26708982

  2. Financing drug discovery via dynamic leverage.

    PubMed

    Montazerhodjat, Vahid; Frishkopf, John J; Lo, Andrew W

    2016-03-01

    We extend the megafund concept for funding drug discovery to enable dynamic leverage in which the portfolio of candidate therapeutic assets is predominantly financed initially by equity, and debt is introduced gradually as assets mature and begin generating cash flows. Leverage is adjusted so as to maintain an approximately constant level of default risk throughout the life of the fund. Numerical simulations show that applying dynamic leverage to a small portfolio of orphan drug candidates can boost the return on equity almost twofold compared with securitization with a static capital structure. Dynamic leverage can also add significant value to comparable all-equity-financed portfolios, enhancing the return on equity without jeopardizing debt performance or increasing risk to equity investors.

  3. Spider venomics: implications for drug discovery.

    PubMed

    Pineda, Sandy S; Undheim, Eivind A B; Rupasinghe, Darshani B; Ikonomopoulou, Maria P; King, Glenn F

    2014-10-01

    Over a period of more than 300 million years, spiders have evolved complex venoms containing an extraordinary array of toxins for prey capture and defense against predators. The major components of most spider venoms are small disulfide-bridged peptides that are highly stable and resistant to proteolytic degradation. Moreover, many of these peptides have high specificity and potency toward molecular targets of therapeutic importance. This unique combination of bioactivity and stability has made spider-venom peptides valuable both as pharmacological tools and as leads for drug development. This review describes recent advances in spider-venom-based drug discovery pipelines. We discuss spider-venom-derived peptides that are currently under investigation for treatment of a diverse range of pathologies including pain, stroke and cancer. PMID:25406008

  4. Cryptosporidiosis Drug Discovery: Opportunities and Challenges.

    PubMed

    Manjunatha, Ujjini H; Chao, Alexander T; Leong, F Joel; Diagana, Thierry T

    2016-08-12

    The apicomplexan parasite Cryptosporidium is the second most important diarrheal pathogen causing life-threatening diarrhea in children, which is also associated with long-term growth faltering and cognitive deficiency. Cryptosporidiosis is a parasitic disease of public health concern caused by Cryptosporidium parvum and Cryptosporidium hominis. Currently, nitazoxanide is the only approved treatment for cryptosporidium infections. Unfortunately, it has limited efficacy in the most vulnerable patients, thus there is an urgent need for a safe and efficacious cryptosporidiosis drug. In this work, we present our current perspectives on the target product profile for novel cryptosporidiosis therapies and the perceived challenges and possible mitigation plans at different stages in the cryptosporidiosis drug discovery process. PMID:27626293

  5. How induced pluripotent stem cells are informing drug discovery in psychiatry.

    PubMed

    Sun, Yishan; Dolmetsch, Ricardo E

    2016-01-01

    Compared with other medical fields, psychiatry is particularly challenging for rational drug discovery. The therapeutic endpoints are abstract measures of cognitive and behavioral performance, for which we have a very limited understanding of the underlying biological mechanisms. Existing preclinical disease models are also limited in their translational fidelity. Recently, there have been active discussions on the use of human induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs) as a catalyzing research tool in psychiatry, but very few review articles in the field have given specific considerations to their use at the interface between psychiatric research and drug discovery. Here, we discuss recent perspectives emerging from this interface. For physicians and researchers on the clinical side, we explain how iPSC-based experimental approaches are placed at the crossroads with psychiatric genetics and how representative studies in the field are addressing biological mechanisms underlying psychiatric disorders. For researchers who directly work with iPSCs and aspire to develop new research techniques, we direct their attention to the utility of this approach for unmet needs in drug discovery workflows.

  6. [GWAS of Rheumatoid Arthritis and Drug Discovery].

    PubMed

    Ohmura, Koichiro

    2015-04-01

    We have conducted genome-wide association studies (GWAS) for rheumatoid arthritis (RA). We previously found that myelin basic protein (MBP) is associated with RA. One of the MBP isoforms (Golli-MBP) is expressed not only in nerve cells, but also in hematopoietic cells, and may negatively regulate T-cell receptor signaling. We expanded the GWAS level by collaborating with laboratories in Japan and then throughout the world. Meta-analysis of GWAS data resulted in the identification of -100 genomic loci associated with RA development. The -100 genomic loci contain -400 candidate genes, and it is not easy to find out which genes actually play important roles in RA. By incorporating available public databases, we succeeded in narrowing down the susceptibility genes from 377 to 98. We also showed that regulatory T cells are associated with RA based on the combination of the histone methylation database and our mega-GWAS results. Protein-protein interaction and drug discovery databases gave us information that some of the drugs have already been developed as therapeutic medicines for RA, and some of them were used for diseases other than RA. These drugs may be used for RA in the near future (drug repurposing). The combination of biological databases and GWAS results may be a novel method to identify new therapeutic targets.

  7. Strategies and recent technologies in drug discovery.

    PubMed

    Kubinyi, H

    1995-10-01

    In the last years, the paradigms of drug research changed significantly. New technologies were developed, in several different fields. Combinatorial chemistry and high-throughput screening increase our chances to find new lead structures, with less effort than by dedicated syntheses. Gene technology, in addition to providing therapeutically useful proteins, significantly contributes to rational drug design. The primary structure of a protein can be derived from the DNA sequence of the corresponding gene. Its relevance for a certain disease is investigated in transgenic animals. Expression of the protein in bacteria or in cell culture produces material for screening systems and for 3D structure determination by protein crystallography. NMR techniques, or electron cryo-microscopy. Structure-based and computer-aided design methods are applied to optimize lead structures with the least effort. A serious problem in the application of such techniques is their limitation to ligand-protein interactions. For the design of a therapeutically useful drug, also absorption, distribution, metabolism and elimination have to be considered. QSAR methods help in this respect. Scope and limitations of the new technologies are discussed in the context of conventional approaches in drug discovery.

  8. The future of crystallography in drug discovery

    PubMed Central

    Zheng, Heping; Hou, Jing; Zimmerman, Matthew D; Wlodawer, Alexander; Minor, Wladek

    2014-01-01

    Introduction X-ray crystallography plays an important role in structure-based drug design (SBDD), and accurate analysis of crystal structures of target macromolecules and macromolecule–ligand complexes is critical at all stages. However, whereas there has been significant progress in improving methods of structural biology, particularly in X-ray crystallography, corresponding progress in the development of computational methods (such as in silico high-throughput screening) is still on the horizon. Crystal structures can be overinterpreted and thus bias hypotheses and follow-up experiments. As in any experimental science, the models of macromolecular structures derived from X-ray diffraction data have their limitations, which need to be critically evaluated and well understood for structure-based drug discovery. Areas covered This review describes how the validity, accuracy and precision of a protein or nucleic acid structure determined by X-ray crystallography can be evaluated from three different perspectives: i) the nature of the diffraction experiment; ii) the interpretation of an electron density map; and iii) the interpretation of the structural model in terms of function and mechanism. The strategies to optimally exploit a macromolecular structure are also discussed in the context of ‘Big Data’ analysis, biochemical experimental design and structure-based drug discovery. Expert opinion Although X-ray crystallography is one of the most detailed ‘microscopes’ available today for examining macromolecular structures, the authors would like to re-emphasize that such structures are only simplified models of the target macromolecules. The authors also wish to reinforce the idea that a structure should not be thought of as a set of precise coordinates but rather as a framework for generating hypotheses to be explored. Numerous biochemical and biophysical experiments, including new diffraction experiments, can and should be performed to verify or falsify

  9. Is Caenorhabditis elegans the Magic Bullet for Anthelminthic Drug Discovery?

    PubMed

    Keiser, Jennifer

    2015-10-01

    Recent advances in handling and readout have facilitated high-throughput screens with Caenorhabditis elegans. A new study demonstrates that C. elegans is a useful tool in high-throughput anthelminthic drug discovery. Despite challenges, drug discovery using C. elegans offers opportunities that might lead the way to novel anthelminthic drugs.

  10. Mass spectrometry in drug discovery: a current review.

    PubMed

    Feng, Wan Yong

    2004-12-01

    Drug discovery in the pharmaceutical industry has shown great demands for screening absorption, distribution, metabolism, excretion (ADME) and pharmacokinetics (PK) in guiding the selection of lead candidate compounds. Determination of ADME/PK properties of new chemical entities (NCE) in early drug discovery should allow defects to be corrected prior to time-consuming and expensive preclinical and clinical development stages. Mass spectrometry has evolved to become an irreplaceable technology in all types of drug discovery applications because of its high sensitivity, speed, selectivity, versatility, and ease of automation. This review will include current mass spectrometric techniques and applications in drug discovery, as well as future prospects.

  11. Translating Stem Cell Biology Into Drug Discovery

    PubMed Central

    Singeç, Ilyas; Simeonov, Anton

    2016-01-01

    Pluripotent stem cell research has made extraordinary progress over the last decade. The robustness of nuclear reprogramming of somatic cells into induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs) has created entirely novel opportunities for drug discovery and personalized regenerative medicine. Patient- and disease-specific iPSCs can be expanded indefinitely and differentiated into relevant cell types of different organ systems. As the utilization of iPSCs is becoming a key enabling technology across various scientific disciplines, there are still important challenges that need to be addressed. Here we review the current state and reflect on the issues that the stem cell and translational communities are facing in bringing iPSCs closer to clinical application.

  12. Coral aquaculture to support drug discovery.

    PubMed

    Leal, Miguel C; Calado, Ricardo; Sheridan, Christopher; Alimonti, Andrea; Osinga, Ronald

    2013-10-01

    Marine natural products (NP) are unanimously acknowledged as the 'blue gold' in the urgent quest for new pharmaceuticals. Although corals are among the marine organisms with the greatest diversity of secondary metabolites, growing evidence suggest that their symbiotic bacteria produce most of these bioactive metabolites. The ex hospite culture of coral symbiotic microbiota is extremely challenging and only limited examples of successful culture exist today. By contrast, in toto aquaculture of corals is a commonly applied technology to produce corals for aquaria. Here, we suggest that coral aquaculture could as well be a viable and economically feasible option to produce the biomass required to execute the first steps of the NP-based drug discovery pipeline.

  13. Collaboration for rare disease drug discovery research

    PubMed Central

    Litterman, Nadia K.; Rhee, Michele; Swinney, David C.; Ekins, Sean

    2014-01-01

    Rare disease research has reached a tipping point, with the confluence of scientific and technologic developments that if appropriately harnessed, could lead to key breakthroughs and treatments for this set of devastating disorders. Industry-wide trends have revealed that the traditional drug discovery research and development (R&D) model is no longer viable, and drug companies are evolving their approach. Rather than only pursue blockbuster therapeutics for heterogeneous, common diseases, drug companies have increasingly begun to shift their focus to rare diseases. In academia, advances in genetics analyses and disease mechanisms have allowed scientific understanding to mature, but the lack of funding and translational capability severely limits the rare disease research that leads to clinical trials. Simultaneously, there is a movement towards increased research collaboration, more data sharing, and heightened engagement and active involvement by patients, advocates, and foundations. The growth in networks and social networking tools presents an opportunity to help reach other patients but also find researchers and build collaborations. The growth of collaborative software that can enable researchers to share their data could also enable rare disease patients and foundations to manage their portfolio of funded projects for developing new therapeutics and suggest drug repurposing opportunities. Still there are many thousands of diseases without treatments and with only fragmented research efforts. We will describe some recent progress in several rare diseases used as examples and propose how collaborations could be facilitated. We propose that the development of a center of excellence that integrates and shares informatics resources for rare diseases sponsored by all of the stakeholders would help foster these initiatives. PMID:25685324

  14. Collaboration for rare disease drug discovery research.

    PubMed

    Litterman, Nadia K; Rhee, Michele; Swinney, David C; Ekins, Sean

    2014-01-01

    Rare disease research has reached a tipping point, with the confluence of scientific and technologic developments that if appropriately harnessed, could lead to key breakthroughs and treatments for this set of devastating disorders. Industry-wide trends have revealed that the traditional drug discovery research and development (R&D) model is no longer viable, and drug companies are evolving their approach. Rather than only pursue blockbuster therapeutics for heterogeneous, common diseases, drug companies have increasingly begun to shift their focus to rare diseases. In academia, advances in genetics analyses and disease mechanisms have allowed scientific understanding to mature, but the lack of funding and translational capability severely limits the rare disease research that leads to clinical trials. Simultaneously, there is a movement towards increased research collaboration, more data sharing, and heightened engagement and active involvement by patients, advocates, and foundations. The growth in networks and social networking tools presents an opportunity to help reach other patients but also find researchers and build collaborations. The growth of collaborative software that can enable researchers to share their data could also enable rare disease patients and foundations to manage their portfolio of funded projects for developing new therapeutics and suggest drug repurposing opportunities. Still there are many thousands of diseases without treatments and with only fragmented research efforts. We will describe some recent progress in several rare diseases used as examples and propose how collaborations could be facilitated. We propose that the development of a center of excellence that integrates and shares informatics resources for rare diseases sponsored by all of the stakeholders would help foster these initiatives. PMID:25685324

  15. The Many Roles of Computation in Drug Discovery

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jorgensen, William L.

    2004-03-01

    An overview is given on the diverse uses of computational chemistry in drug discovery. Particular emphasis is placed on virtual screening, de novo design, evaluation of drug-likeness, and advanced methods for determining protein-ligand binding.

  16. Biosensors: new approaches in drug discovery

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Keusgen, Michael

    2002-09-01

    The development of biosensors for analytical purposes has attracted a great deal of attention in recent years. A biosensor is defined as an analytical device consisting of a biological component (e.g., enzyme, antibody, entire cell, DNA) and a physical transducer (e.g., electrode, optical device). Biosensors are mostly designed for routine analysis, such as clinical diagnosis, quality control of food, in-process control of fermentations, and in environmental analysis. Many of these sensors are also suitable for screening purposes in order to find new drugs. Such systems should yield information either about compounds with known bioactivity or about the bioactivity of samples with known or unknown chemical composition. Biosensors intended for the latter purpose are essentially based on whole cells carrying receptors and ion channels at their surfaces. Miniaturization of structures, primarily based on silicon, allows integration of many sensors into arrays, which may be suitable for the screening of natural and chemical products as well as combinatorial libraries. Until now, no commercially available sensors of this kind exist but they are expected in the near future. Different biosensors, based on enzymes, antibodies, cells, artificial membranes and entire animal tissues, which can be used in drug discovery and may lead to efficient screening systems in the future, are described in this review.

  17. Pharmacognosy: Science of natural products in drug discovery.

    PubMed

    Orhan, Ilkay Erdogan

    2014-01-01

    Pharmacognosy deals with the natural drugs obtained from organisms such as most plants, microbes, and animals. Up to date, many important drugs including morphine, atropine, galanthamine, etc. have originated from natural sources which continue to be good model molecules in drug discovery. Traditional medicine is also a part of pharmacognosy and most of the third world countries still depend on the use of herbal medicines. Consequently, pharmacognosy always keeps its popularity in pharmaceutical sciences and plays a critical role in drug discovery.

  18. Harvesting classification trees for drug discovery.

    PubMed

    Yuan, Yan; Chipman, Hugh A; Welch, William J

    2012-12-21

    Millions of compounds are available as potential drug candidates. High throughput screening (HTS) is widely used in drug discovery to assay compounds for a particular biological activity. A common approach is to build a classification model using a smaller sample of assay data to predict the activity of unscreened compounds and hence select further compounds for assay. This improves the efficiency of the search by increasing the proportion of hits found among the assayed compounds. In many assays, the biological activity is dichotomized into a binary indicator variable; the explanatory variables are chemical descriptors capturing compound structure. A tree model is interpretable, which is key, since it is of interest to identify diverse chemical classes among the active compounds to serve as leads for drug optimization. Interpretability of a tree is often reduced, however, by the sheer size of the tree model and the number of variables and rules of the terminal nodes. We develop a "tree harvesting" algorithm to filter out redundant "junk" rules from the tree while retaining its predictive accuracy. This simplification can facilitate the process of uncovering key relations between molecular structure and activity and may clarify rules defining multiple activity mechanisms. Using data from the National Cancer Institute, we illustrate that many of the rules used to build a classification tree may be redundant. Unlike tree pruning, tree harvesting allows variables with junk rules to be removed near the top of the tree. The reduction in complexity of the terminal nodes improves the interpretability of the model. The algorithm also aims to reorganize the tree nodes associated with the interesting "active" class into larger, more coherent groups, thus facilitating identification of the mechanisms for activity.

  19. Biodiversity, chemical diversity and drug discovery.

    PubMed

    Singh, Sheo B; Pelaez, Fernando

    2008-01-01

    Drugs developed from microbial natural products are in the fundaments of modern pharmaceutical companies. Despite decades of research, all evidences suggest that there must remain many interesting natural molecules with potential therapeutic application yet to be discovered. Any efforts to successfully exploit the chemical diversity of microbial secondary metabolites need to rely heavily on a good understanding of microbial diversity, being the working hypothesis that maximizing biological diversity is the key strategy to maximizing chemical diversity. This chapter presents an overview of diverse topics related with this basic principle, always in relation with the discovery of novel secondary metabolites. The types of microorganisms more frequently used for natural products discovery are briefly reviewed, as well as the differences between terrestrial and marine habitats as sources of bioactive secondary metabolite producers. The concepts about microbial diversity as applied to prokaryotes have evolved in the last years, but recent data suggest the existence of true biogeographic patterns of bacterial diversity, which are also discussed. Special attention is dedicated to the existing strategies to exploit the microbial diversity that is not easy to tackle by conventional approaches. This refers explicitly to the current attempts to isolate and cultivate the previously uncultured bacteria, including the application of high throughput techniques. Likewise, the advances of microbial molecular biology has allowed the development of metagenomic approaches, i.e., the expression of biosynthetic pathways directly obtained from environmental DNA and cloned in a suitable host, as another way of accessing microbial genetic resources. Also, approaches relying on the genomics of metabolite producers are reviewed.

  20. In vitro display technologies - new tools for drug discovery.

    PubMed

    FitzGerald

    2000-06-01

    Over the past decade, several ligand discovery techniques have been developed that mimic the process of natural evolution. Phage display technology is the most established of these methods and has been applied to numerous technological problems including the discovery of novel drugs. More recently, some new display technologies have emerged which, unlike phage display, operate entirely in vitro and have concomitant advantages. This review describes this new generation of display technologies and indicates how they might fit into the modern drug discovery process.

  1. Drug Discovery Case History: US Spelling

    PubMed Central

    Kufahl, Peter R.; Watterson, Lucas R.

    2015-01-01

    Introduction Globally, alcohol abuse and dependence are significant contributors to chronic disease and injury and are responsible for nearly 4% of all deaths annually. Acamprosate (Campral), one of only three pharmacological treatments approved for the treatment of alcohol dependence, has shown mixed efficacy in clinical trials in maintaining abstinence of detoxified alcoholics since studies began in the 1980’s. Yielding inconsistent results, these studies have prompted skepticism. Areas Covered Herein, the authors review the preclinical studies which have assessed the efficacy of acamprosate in various animal models of alcohol dependence and discuss the disparate findings from the major clinical trials. Moreover, the authors discuss the major limitations of these preclinical and clinical studies and offer explanations for the often contradictory findings. The article also looks at the importance of the calcium moiety that accompanies the salt form of acamprosate and its relevance to its activity. Expert opinion The recent discovery that large doses of calcium largely duplicate the effects of acamprosate in animal models has introduced a serious challenge to the widely-held functional association between this drug and the glutamate neurotransmission system. Future research on acamprosate or newer pharmacotherapeutics should consider assessing plasma and/or brain levels of calcium as a correlate or mediating factor in anti-relapse efficacy. Furthermore, preclinical research on acamprosate has thus far lacked animal models of chemical dependence on alcohol, and the testing of rodents with histories of alcohol intoxication and withdrawal is suggested. PMID:25258174

  2. Biomarkers in pharmacology and drug discovery.

    PubMed

    Anderson, D C; Kodukula, Krishna

    2014-01-01

    Biomarkers, quantitatively measurable indicators of biological or pathogenic processes, once validated play a critical role in disease diagnostics, the prediction of disease progression, and/or monitoring of the response to treatment. They may also represent drug targets. A number of different methods can be used for biomarker discovery and validation, including proteomics methods, metabolomics, imaging, and genome wide association studies (GWASs) and can be analysed using receiver operating characteristic (ROC) plots. The relative utility of single biomarkers compared to biomarker panels is discussed, along with paradigms for biomarker development, the latter in the context of three large-scale biomarker consortia, the Critical Path Predictive Safety Testing Consortium (PSTC), the NCI Early Detection Research Network (EDRN) and the Alzheimer's Disease Neuroimaging Initiative (ADNI). The importance of systematic optimization of many parameters in biomarker analysis, including validation, reproducibility, study design, statistical analysis and avoidance of bias are critical features used by these consortia. Problems including introduction of bias into study designs, data reporting or data analysis are also reviewed.

  3. Metagenomics-based drug discovery and marine microbial diversity.

    PubMed

    Li, Xiang; Qin, Ling

    2005-11-01

    As the global threat of drug-resistant pathogens continues to rise, new strategies and resources are required to accelerate and advance the drug discovery process. We believe that rapid progress in metagenomics has opened up a new era in the study of marine microbial diversity that enables direct access to the genomes of numerous uncultivable microorganisms. This review outlines recent developments and future trends in metagenomics-based drug discovery in marine microbial communities and their associated chemical prosperity.

  4. Drug discovery from plant sources: An integrated approach

    PubMed Central

    Katiyar, Chandrakant; Gupta, Arun; Kanjilal, Satyajyoti; Katiyar, Shefali

    2012-01-01

    New drug discovery is facing serious challenges due to reduction in number of new drug approvals coupled with exorbitant rising cost. Advent of combinatorial chemistry provided new hope of higher success rates of new chemical entities (NCEs); however, even this scientific development has failed to improve the success rate in new drug discovery. This scenario has prompted us to come out with a novel approach of integrated drug discovery, where Ayurvedic wisdom can synergize with drug discovery from plant sources. Initial steps in new drug discovery involve identification of NCEs, which can be either sourced through chemical synthesis or can be isolated from natural products through biological activity guided fractionation. The sources of many of the new drugs and active ingredients of medicines are derived from natural products. The starting point for plant-based new drug discovery should be identification of the right candidate plants by applying Ayurvedic wisdom, traditional documented use, tribal non-documented use, and exhaustive literature search. Frequency analysis of the ingredients of the ancient documented formulations and analysis of their Ayurvedic attributes may provide an in-depth idea of the predominance of particular Ayurvedic characteristics based on which appropriate candidate plants may be selected for bioactivity-based fractionation. The integration of Ayurvedic wisdom with drug discovery also brings the need for a paradigm shift in the extraction process from sequential to parallel extraction. Bioassay-guided fractionation of the identified plant may lead to standardized extract or isolated bioactive druggable compound as the new drug. This integrated approach would lead to saving of cost and time, coupled with enhanced success rate in drug discovery. PMID:23049178

  5. Marinopyrroles: Unique Drug Discoveries Based on Marine Natural Products.

    PubMed

    Li, Rongshi

    2016-01-01

    Natural products provide a successful supply of new chemical entities (NCEs) for drug discovery to treat human diseases. Approximately half of the NCEs are based on natural products and their derivatives. Notably, marine natural products, a largely untapped resource, have contributed to drug discovery and development with eight drugs or cosmeceuticals approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration and European Medicines Agency, and ten candidates undergoing clinical trials. Collaborative efforts from drug developers, biologists, organic, medicinal, and natural product chemists have elevated drug discoveries to new levels. These efforts are expected to continue to improve the efficiency of natural product-based drugs. Marinopyrroles are examined here as a case study for potential anticancer and antibiotic agents.

  6. Leveraging Big Data to Transform Target Selection and Drug Discovery

    PubMed Central

    Chen, B; Butte, AJ

    2016-01-01

    The advances of genomics, sequencing, and high throughput technologies have led to the creation of large volumes of diverse datasets for drug discovery. Analyzing these datasets to better understand disease and discover new drugs is becoming more common. Recent open data initiatives in basic and clinical research have dramatically increased the types of data available to the public. The past few years have witnessed successful use of big data in many sectors across the whole drug discovery pipeline. In this review, we will highlight the state of the art in leveraging big data to identify new targets, drug indications, and drug response biomarkers in this era of precision medicine. PMID:26659699

  7. Leveraging big data to transform target selection and drug discovery

    PubMed Central

    Butte, AJ

    2016-01-01

    The advances of genomics, sequencing, and high throughput technologies have led to the creation of large volumes of diverse datasets for drug discovery. Analyzing these datasets to better understand disease and discover new drugs is becoming more common. Recent open data initiatives in basic and clinical research have dramatically increased the types of data available to the public. The past few years have witnessed successful use of big data in many sectors across the whole drug discovery pipeline. In this review, we will highlight the state of the art in leveraging big data to identify new targets, drug indications, and drug response biomarkers in this era of precision medicine. PMID:26659699

  8. Antimalarial Drug Discovery: From Quinine to the Dream of Eradication

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    The search for antimalarial remedies predates modern medicine and the concept of small molecule chemotherapy, yet has played a central role in the development of both. This history is reviewed in the context of the current renaissance in antimalarial drug discovery, which is seeing modern drug discovery approaches applied to the problem for the first time. Great strides have been made in the past decade, but further innovations from the drug discovery community will be required if the ultimate dream of eradication is to be achieved. PMID:24790706

  9. Phenotypic screening in cancer drug discovery - past, present and future.

    PubMed

    Moffat, John G; Rudolph, Joachim; Bailey, David

    2014-08-01

    There has been a resurgence of interest in the use of phenotypic screens in drug discovery as an alternative to target-focused approaches. Given that oncology is currently the most active therapeutic area, and also one in which target-focused approaches have been particularly prominent in the past two decades, we investigated the contribution of phenotypic assays to oncology drug discovery by analysing the origins of all new small-molecule cancer drugs approved by the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) over the past 15 years and those currently in clinical development. Although the majority of these drugs originated from target-based discovery, we identified a significant number whose discovery depended on phenotypic screening approaches. We postulate that the contribution of phenotypic screening to cancer drug discovery has been hampered by a reliance on 'classical' nonspecific drug effects such as cytotoxicity and mitotic arrest, exacerbated by a paucity of mechanistically defined cellular models for therapeutically translatable cancer phenotypes. However, technical and biological advances that enable such mechanistically informed phenotypic models have the potential to empower phenotypic drug discovery in oncology.

  10. Open source drug discovery--a new paradigm of collaborative research in tuberculosis drug development.

    PubMed

    Bhardwaj, Anshu; Scaria, Vinod; Raghava, Gajendra Pal Singh; Lynn, Andrew Michael; Chandra, Nagasuma; Banerjee, Sulagna; Raghunandanan, Muthukurussi V; Pandey, Vikas; Taneja, Bhupesh; Yadav, Jyoti; Dash, Debasis; Bhattacharya, Jaijit; Misra, Amit; Kumar, Anil; Ramachandran, Srinivasan; Thomas, Zakir; Brahmachari, Samir K

    2011-09-01

    It is being realized that the traditional closed-door and market driven approaches for drug discovery may not be the best suited model for the diseases of the developing world such as tuberculosis and malaria, because most patients suffering from these diseases have poor paying capacity. To ensure that new drugs are created for patients suffering from these diseases, it is necessary to formulate an alternate paradigm of drug discovery process. The current model constrained by limitations for collaboration and for sharing of resources with confidentiality hampers the opportunities for bringing expertise from diverse fields. These limitations hinder the possibilities of lowering the cost of drug discovery. The Open Source Drug Discovery project initiated by Council of Scientific and Industrial Research, India has adopted an open source model to power wide participation across geographical borders. Open Source Drug Discovery emphasizes integrative science through collaboration, open-sharing, taking up multi-faceted approaches and accruing benefits from advances on different fronts of new drug discovery. Because the open source model is based on community participation, it has the potential to self-sustain continuous development by generating a storehouse of alternatives towards continued pursuit for new drug discovery. Since the inventions are community generated, the new chemical entities developed by Open Source Drug Discovery will be taken up for clinical trial in a non-exclusive manner by participation of multiple companies with majority funding from Open Source Drug Discovery. This will ensure availability of drugs through a lower cost community driven drug discovery process for diseases afflicting people with poor paying capacity. Hopefully what LINUX the World Wide Web have done for the information technology, Open Source Drug Discovery will do for drug discovery.

  11. CNS Anticancer Drug Discovery and Development Conference White Paper.

    PubMed

    Levin, Victor A; Tonge, Peter J; Gallo, James M; Birtwistle, Marc R; Dar, Arvin C; Iavarone, Antonio; Paddison, Patrick J; Heffron, Timothy P; Elmquist, William F; Lachowicz, Jean E; Johnson, Ted W; White, Forest M; Sul, Joohee; Smith, Quentin R; Shen, Wang; Sarkaria, Jann N; Samala, Ramakrishna; Wen, Patrick Y; Berry, Donald A; Petter, Russell C

    2015-11-01

    Following the first CNS Anticancer Drug Discovery and Development Conference, the speakers from the first 4 sessions and organizers of the conference created this White Paper hoping to stimulate more and better CNS anticancer drug discovery and development. The first part of the White Paper reviews, comments, and, in some cases, expands on the 4 session areas critical to new drug development: pharmacological challenges, recent drug approaches, drug targets and discovery, and clinical paths. Following this concise review of the science and clinical aspects of new CNS anticancer drug discovery and development, we discuss, under the rubric "Accelerating Drug Discovery and Development for Brain Tumors," further reasons why the pharmaceutical industry and academia have failed to develop new anticancer drugs for CNS malignancies and what it will take to change the current status quo and develop the drugs so desperately needed by our patients with malignant CNS tumors. While this White Paper is not a formal roadmap to that end, it should be an educational guide to clinicians and scientists to help move a stagnant field forward.

  12. Novel opportunities for computational biology and sociology in drug discovery

    PubMed Central

    Yao, Lixia

    2009-01-01

    Drug discovery today is impossible without sophisticated modeling and computation. In this review we touch on previous advances in computational biology and by tracing the steps involved in pharmaceutical development, we explore a range of novel, high value opportunities for computational innovation in modeling the biological process of disease and the social process of drug discovery. These opportunities include text mining for new drug leads, modeling molecular pathways and predicting the efficacy of drug cocktails, analyzing genetic overlap between diseases and predicting alternative drug use. Computation can also be used to model research teams and innovative regions and to estimate the value of academy-industry ties for scientific and human benefit. Attention to these opportunities could promise punctuated advance, and will complement the well-established computational work on which drug discovery currently relies. PMID:19674801

  13. Commentary: Leveraging discovery science to advance child and adolescent psychiatric research--a commentary on Zhao and Castellanos 2016.

    PubMed

    Mennes, Maarten

    2016-03-01

    'Big Data' and 'Population Imaging' are becoming integral parts of inspiring research aimed at delineating the biological underpinnings of psychiatric disorders. The scientific strategies currently associated with big data and population imaging are typically embedded in so-called discovery science, thereby pointing to the hypothesis-generating rather than hypothesis-testing nature of discovery science. In this issue, Yihong Zhao and F. Xavier Castellanos provide a compelling overview of strategies for discovery science aimed at progressing our understanding of neuropsychiatric disorders. In particular, they focus on efforts in genetic and neuroimaging research, which, together with extended behavioural testing, form the main pillars of psychopathology research.

  14. Protein Complex Production from the Drug Discovery Standpoint.

    PubMed

    Moarefi, Ismail

    2016-01-01

    Small molecule drug discovery critically depends on the availability of meaningful in vitro assays to guide medicinal chemistry programs that are aimed at optimizing drug potency and selectivity. As it becomes increasingly evident, most disease relevant drug targets do not act as a single protein. In the body, they are instead generally found in complex with protein cofactors that are highly relevant for their correct function and regulation. This review highlights selected examples of the increasing trend to use biologically relevant protein complexes for rational drug discovery to reduce costly late phase attritions due to lack of efficacy or toxicity.

  15. The impact of parallel chemistry in drug discovery.

    PubMed

    Edwards, Paul J

    2006-05-01

    With the application of parallel synthesis of single compounds to drug-discovery efforts, improvements in the efficiency of synthesis are possible. However, for improvements to occur in effective drug design - a critical requirement to increase productivity in the modern pharmaceutical industry - the implementation of in silico design hypotheses that incorporate comprehensive information on a target, including considerations of absorption, distribution, metabolism and excretion, is also necessary. Concomitantly, the use of automated methods of synthesis and purification is also required to improve drug design. Combining all of these elements allows the possibility to uncover unique insights into a biological target quickly and to therefore accelerate the rate of drug discovery.

  16. [Activity of NTDs Drug-discovery Research Consortium].

    PubMed

    Namatame, Ichiji

    2016-01-01

    Neglected tropical diseases (NTDs) are an extremely important issue facing global health care. To improve "access to health" where people are unable to access adequate medical care due to poverty and weak healthcare systems, we have established two consortiums: the NTD drug discovery research consortium, and the pediatric praziquantel consortium. The NTD drug discovery research consortium, which involves six institutions from industry, government, and academia, as well as an international non-profit organization, is committed to developing anti-protozoan active compounds for three NTDs (Leishmaniasis, Chagas disease, and African sleeping sickness). Each participating institute will contribute their efforts to accomplish the following: selection of drug targets based on information technology, and drug discovery by three different approaches (in silico drug discovery, "fragment evolution" which is a unique drug designing method of Astellas Pharma, and phenotypic screening with Astellas' compound library). The consortium has established a brand new database (Integrated Neglected Tropical Disease Database; iNTRODB), and has selected target proteins for the in silico and fragment evolution drug discovery approaches. Thus far, we have identified a number of promising compounds that inhibit the target protein, and we are currently trying to improve the anti-protozoan activity of these compounds. The pediatric praziquantel consortium was founded in July 2012 to develop and register a new praziquantel pediatric formulation for the treatment of schistosomiasis. Astellas Pharma has been a core member in this consortium since its establishment, and has provided expertise and technology in the area of pediatric formulation development and clinical development.

  17. Systematic discovery of drug interaction mechanisms

    PubMed Central

    Chevereau, Guillaume; Bollenbach, Tobias

    2015-01-01

    Drug combinations are increasingly important in disease treatments, for combating drug resistance, and for elucidating fundamental relationships in cell physiology. When drugs are combined, their individual effects on cells may be amplified or weakened. Such drug interactions are crucial for treatment efficacy, but their underlying mechanisms remain largely unknown. To uncover the causes of drug interactions, we developed a systematic approach based on precise quantification of the individual and joint effects of antibiotics on growth of genome-wide Escherichia coli gene deletion strains. We found that drug interactions between antibiotics representing the main modes of action are highly robust to genetic perturbation. This robustness is encapsulated in a general principle of bacterial growth, which enables the quantitative prediction of mutant growth rates under drug combinations. Rare violations of this principle exposed recurring cellular functions controlling drug interactions. In particular, we found that polysaccharide and ATP synthesis control multiple drug interactions with previously unexplained mechanisms, and small molecule adjuvants targeting these functions synthetically reshape drug interactions in predictable ways. These results provide a new conceptual framework for the design of multidrug combinations and suggest that there are universal mechanisms at the heart of most drug interactions. PMID:25924924

  18. Predictive in silico off-target profiling in drug discovery.

    PubMed

    Schmidt, Friedemann; Matter, Hans; Hessler, Gerhard; Czich, Andreas

    2014-03-01

    Drug action can be rationalized as interaction of a molecule with proteins in a regulatory network of targets from a specific biological system. Both drug and side effects are often governed by interaction of the drug molecule with many, often unrelated, targets. Accordingly, arrays of protein-ligand interaction data from numerous in vitro profiling assays today provide growing evidence of polypharmacological drug interactions, even for marketed drugs. In vitro off-target profiling has therefore become an important tool in early drug discovery to learn about potential off-target liabilities, which are sometimes beneficial, but more often safety relevant. The rapidly developing field of in silico profiling approaches is complementing in vitro profiling. These approaches capitalize from large amounts of biochemical data from multiple sources to be exploited for optimizing undesirable side effects in pharmaceutical research. Therefore, current in silico profiling models are nowadays perceived as valuable tools in drug discovery, and promise a platform to support optimally informed decisions.

  19. Advances in Nuclear Magnetic Resonance for Drug Discovery.

    PubMed

    Powers, Robert

    2009-10-01

    BACKGROUND: Drug discovery is a complex and unpredictable endeavor with a high failure rate. Current trends in the pharmaceutical industry have exasperated these challenges and are contributing to the dramatic decline in productivity observed over the last decade. The industrialization of science by forcing the drug discovery process to adhere to assembly-line protocols is imposing unnecessary restrictions, such as short project time-lines. Recent advances in nuclear magnetic resonance are responding to these self-imposed limitations and are providing opportunities to increase the success rate of drug discovery. OBJECTIVE/METHOD: A review of recent advancements in NMR technology that have the potential of significantly impacting and benefiting the drug discovery process will be presented. These include fast NMR data collection protocols and high-throughput protein structure determination, rapid protein-ligand co-structure determination, lead discovery using fragment-based NMR affinity screens, NMR metabolomics to monitor in vivo efficacy and toxicity for lead compounds, and the identification of new therapeutic targets through the functional annotation of proteins by FAST-NMR. CONCLUSION: NMR is a critical component of the drug discovery process, where the versatility of the technique enables it to continually expand and evolve its role. NMR is expected to maintain this growth over the next decade with advancements in automation, speed of structure calculation, in-cell imaging techniques, and the expansion of NMR amenable targets.

  20. Advances in Nuclear Magnetic Resonance for Drug Discovery

    PubMed Central

    Powers, Robert

    2010-01-01

    Background Drug discovery is a complex and unpredictable endeavor with a high failure rate. Current trends in the pharmaceutical industry have exasperated these challenges and are contributing to the dramatic decline in productivity observed over the last decade. The industrialization of science by forcing the drug discovery process to adhere to assembly-line protocols is imposing unnecessary restrictions, such as short project time-lines. Recent advances in nuclear magnetic resonance are responding to these self-imposed limitations and are providing opportunities to increase the success rate of drug discovery. Objective/Method A review of recent advancements in NMR technology that have the potential of significantly impacting and benefiting the drug discovery process will be presented. These include fast NMR data collection protocols and high-throughput protein structure determination, rapid protein-ligand co-structure determination, lead discovery using fragment-based NMR affinity screens, NMR metabolomics to monitor in vivo efficacy and toxicity for lead compounds, and the identification of new therapeutic targets through the functional annotation of proteins by FAST-NMR. Conclusion NMR is a critical component of the drug discovery process, where the versatility of the technique enables it to continually expand and evolve its role. NMR is expected to maintain this growth over the next decade with advancements in automation, speed of structure calculation, in-cell imaging techniques, and the expansion of NMR amenable targets. PMID:20333269

  1. The Multifaceted Roles of Molecular Dynamics Simulations in Drug Discovery.

    PubMed

    Fox, Stephen John; Li, Jianguo; Sing Tan, Yaw; Nguyen, Minh N; Pal, Arumay; Ouaray, Zohra; Yadahalli, Shilpa; Kannan, Srinivasaraghavan

    2016-01-01

    Discovery of new therapeutics is a very challenging, expensive and time-consuming process. With the number of approved drugs declining steadily, combined with increasing costs, a rational approach is needed to facilitate, expedite and streamline the drug discovery process. In silico methods are playing key roles in the discovery of a growing number of marketed drugs. The use of computational approaches, particularly molecular dynamics, in drug design is rapidly gaining momentum and acceptance as an essential part of the toolkit for modern drug discovery. From analysing atomistic details for explaining experimentally observed phenomena, to designing drugs with increased efficacy and specificity, the insight that such simulations can provide is generating new ideas and applications that have previously been unexplored. Here we discuss physics-based simulation methodologies and applications in drug design: from locating pockets to designing novel lead compounds, from small molecules to peptides. With developments in hardware, software and theory, the improved predictive abilities of in silico efforts are becoming an essential part of efficient, economic and accurate drug development strategies.

  2. Single cell analytic tools for drug discovery and development

    PubMed Central

    Heath, James R.; Ribas, Antoni; Mischel, Paul S.

    2016-01-01

    The genetic, functional, or compositional heterogeneity of healthy and diseased tissues presents major challenges in drug discovery and development.1-3 In cancers, heterogeneity may be essential for tumor stability,4 but its precise role in tumor biology is poorly resolved. This challenges the design of accurate disease models for use in drug development, and can confound the interpretation of biomarker levels, and of patient responses to specific therapies. The complex nature of heterogeneous tissues has motivated the development of tools for single cell genomic, transcriptomic, and multiplex proteomic analysis. We review these tools, assess their advantages and limitations, and explore their potential applications in drug discovery and development. PMID:26669673

  3. Application of chemical biology in target identification and drug discovery.

    PubMed

    Zhu, Yue; Xiao, Ting; Lei, Saifei; Zhou, Fulai; Wang, Ming-Wei

    2015-09-01

    Drug discovery and development is vital to the well-being of mankind and sustainability of the pharmaceutical industry. Using chemical biology approaches to discover drug leads has become a widely accepted path partially because of the completion of the Human Genome Project. Chemical biology mainly solves biological problems through searching previously unknown targets for pharmacologically active small molecules or finding ligands for well-defined drug targets. It is a powerful tool to study how these small molecules interact with their respective targets, as well as their roles in signal transduction, molecular recognition and cell functions. There have been an increasing number of new therapeutic targets being identified and subsequently validated as a result of advances in functional genomics, which in turn led to the discovery of numerous active small molecules via a variety of high-throughput screening initiatives. In this review, we highlight some applications of chemical biology in the context of drug discovery.

  4. Discovery of Novel Antigiardiasis Drug Candidates

    PubMed Central

    Kulakova, Liudmila; Galkin, Andrey; Chen, Catherine Z.; Southall, Noel; Marugan, Juan J.; Zheng, Wei

    2014-01-01

    Giardiasis is a severe intestinal parasitic disease caused by Giardia lamblia, which inflicts many people in poor regions and is the most common parasitic infection in the United States. Current standard care drugs are associated with undesirable side effects, treatment failures, and an increasing incidence of drug resistance. As follow-up to a high-throughput screening of an approved drug library, which identified compounds lethal to G. lamblia trophozoites, we have determined the minimum lethal concentrations of 28 drugs and advanced 10 of them to in vivo studies in mice. The results were compared to treatment with the standard care drug, metronidazole, in order to identify drugs with equal or better anti-Giardia activities. Three drugs, fumagillin, carbadox, and tioxidazole, were identified. These compounds were also potent against metronidazole-resistant human G. lamblia isolates (assemblages A and B), as determined in in vitro assays. Of these three compounds, fumagillin is currently an orphan drug used within the European Union to treat microsporidiosis in immunocompromised individuals, whereas carbadox and tioxidazole are used in veterinary medicine. A dose-dependent study of fumagillin in a giardiasis mouse model revealed that the effective dose of fumagillin was ∼100-fold lower than the metronidazole dose. Therefore, fumagillin may be advanced to further studies as an alternative treatment for giardiasis when metronidazole fails. PMID:25267663

  5. Semantic Web Ontology and Data Integration: a Case Study in Aiding Psychiatric Drug Repurposing.

    PubMed

    Liang, Chen; Sun, Jingchun; Tao, Cui

    2016-01-01

    Despite ongoing progress towards treating mental illness, there remain significant difficulties in selecting probable candidate drugs from the existing database. We describe an ontology - oriented approach aims to represent the nexus between genes, drugs, phenotypes, symptoms, and diseases from multiple information sources. Along with this approach, we report a case study in which we attempted to explore the candidate drugs that effective for both bipolar disorder and epilepsy. We constructed an ontology that incorporates the knowledge between the two diseases and performed semantic reasoning task on the ontology. The reasoning results suggested 48 candidate drugs that hold promise for a further breakthrough. The evaluation was performed and demonstrated the validity of the proposed ontology. The overarching goal of this research is to build a framework of ontology - based data integration underpinning psychiatric drug repurposing. This approach prioritizes the candidate drugs that have potential associations among genes, phenotypes and symptoms, and thus facilitates the data integration and drug repurposing in psychiatric disorders. PMID:27570661

  6. Semantic Web Ontology and Data Integration: a Case Study in Aiding Psychiatric Drug Repurposing.

    PubMed

    Liang, Chen; Sun, Jingchun; Tao, Cui

    2016-01-01

    Despite ongoing progress towards treating mental illness, there remain significant difficulties in selecting probable candidate drugs from the existing database. We describe an ontology - oriented approach aims to represent the nexus between genes, drugs, phenotypes, symptoms, and diseases from multiple information sources. Along with this approach, we report a case study in which we attempted to explore the candidate drugs that effective for both bipolar disorder and epilepsy. We constructed an ontology that incorporates the knowledge between the two diseases and performed semantic reasoning task on the ontology. The reasoning results suggested 48 candidate drugs that hold promise for a further breakthrough. The evaluation was performed and demonstrated the validity of the proposed ontology. The overarching goal of this research is to build a framework of ontology - based data integration underpinning psychiatric drug repurposing. This approach prioritizes the candidate drugs that have potential associations among genes, phenotypes and symptoms, and thus facilitates the data integration and drug repurposing in psychiatric disorders.

  7. Highthroughtput analysis of behavior for drug discovery

    PubMed Central

    Alexandrov, Vadim; Brunner, Dani; Hanania, Taleen; Leahy, Emer

    2015-01-01

    Drug testing with traditional behavioral assays constitutes a major bottleneck in the development of novel therapies. PsychoGenics developed three comprehensive highthroughtput systems, SmartCube®, NeuroCube® and PhenoCube® systems, to increase the efficiency of the drug screening and phenotyping in rodents. These three systems capture different domains of behavior, namely, cognitive, motor, circadian, social, anxiety-like, gait and others, using custom-built computer vision software and machine learning algorithms for analysis. This review exemplifies the use of the three systems and explains how they can advance drug screening with their applications to phenotyping of disease models, drug screening, selection of lead candidates, behavior-driven lead optimization, and drug repurposing. PMID:25592319

  8. China: current trends in pharmaceutical drug discovery.

    PubMed

    Luo, Ying

    2008-04-01

    Pharmaceutical discovery and development is expensive and highly risky, even for multinational corporations. As a developing country with limited financial resources, China has been seeking the most cost-effective means to reach the same level of innovation and productivity as Western countries in the pharmaceutical industry sector. After more than 50 years of building up talent and experience, the time for China to become a powerhouse in pharmaceutical innovation is finally approaching. Returnee scientists to China are one of the reasons for the wave of new discovery and commercialization occurring within the country. The consolidation of local Chinese pharmaceutical companies and foreign investment is also providing an agreeable environment for the evolution of a new generation of biotechnology. The opportunity for pharmaceutical innovation is also being expedited by the entry of multinational companies into the Chinese pharmaceutical market, and by the outsourcing of research from these companies to China. PMID:18379963

  9. Re-engineering drug discovery and development.

    PubMed

    FitzGerald, Garret A

    2011-10-01

    The rate of new drug approvals in the US has remained essentially constant since 1950, while the costs of drug development have soared. Many commentators question the sustainability of the current model of drug development, in which large pharmaceutical companies incur markedly escalating costs to deliver the same number of products to market. This Issue Brief summarizes the problem, describes ongoing governmental efforts to influence the process, and suggests changes in regulatory science and translational medicine that may promote more successful development of safe and effective therapeutics PMID:22049582

  10. TCM-based new drug discovery and development in China.

    PubMed

    Wu, Wan-Ying; Hou, Jin-Jun; Long, Hua-Li; Yang, Wen-Zhi; Liang, Jian; Guo, De-An

    2014-04-01

    Over the past 30 years, China has significantly improved the drug development environment by establishing a series of policies for the regulation of new drug approval. The regulatory system for new drug evaluation and registration in China was gradually developed in accordance with international standards. The approval and registration of TCM in China became as strict as those of chemical drugs and biological products. In this review, TCM-based new drug discovery and development are introduced according to the TCM classification of nine categories.

  11. C. elegans in high-throughput drug discovery

    PubMed Central

    O’Reilly, Linda P.; Luke, Cliff J.; Perlmutter, David H.; Silverman, Gary A.; Pak, Stephen C.

    2014-01-01

    C. elegans has proven to be a useful model organism for investigating molecular and cellular aspects of numerous human diseases. More recently, investigators have explored the use of this organism as a tool for drug discovery. Although earlier drug screens were labor-intensive and low in throughput, recent advances in high-throughput liquid workflows, imaging platforms and data analysis software have made C. elegans a viable option for automated high-throughput drug screens. This review will outline the evolution of C. elegans-based drug screening, discuss the inherent challenges of using C. elegans, and highlight recent technological advances that have paved the way for future drug screens. PMID:24333896

  12. Drug discovery: Fighting evolution with chemical synthesis

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yan, Ming; Baran, Phil S.

    2016-05-01

    A synthetic strategy has been developed that provides easy access to structurally diverse analogues of naturally occurring antibiotics, providing a fresh means of attack in the war against drug-resistant bacteria. See Article p.338

  13. Diverse therapeutic targets and biomarkers for Alzheimer's disease and related dementias: report on the Alzheimer's Drug Discovery Foundation 2012 International Conference on Alzheimer's Drug Discovery

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    The Alzheimer's Drug Discovery Foundation's 13th International Conference on Alzheimer's Drug Discovery was held on 10-11 September 2012 in Jersey City, NJ, USA. This meeting report provides an overview of Alzheimer's Drug Discovery Foundation-funded programs, ranging from novel biomarkers to accelerate clinical development to drug-discovery programs with a focus on targets related to neuroprotection, mitochondrial function, apolipoprotein E and vascular biology. PMID:23374760

  14. Early days in drug discovery by crystallography - personal recollections.

    PubMed

    Colman, Peter M

    2013-01-01

    The influences of Lawrence Bragg and Max Perutz are evident in the contemporary emphasis on 'structural enablement' in drug discovery. On this occasion of the centenary of Bragg's equation, his role in supporting the earliest structural studies of biological materials at the Cavendish Laboratory is remembered. The 1962 Nobel Prizes for the structures of DNA and proteins marked the golden anniversary of the von Laue and Bragg discoveries.

  15. Benefits of Structural Genomics for Drug Discovery Research

    SciTech Connect

    Grabowski, M.; Chruszcz, M; Zimmerman, M; Kirillova, O; Minor, W

    2009-01-01

    While three dimensional structures have long been used to search for new drug targets, only a fraction of new drugs coming to the market has been developed with the use of a structure-based drug discovery approach. However, the recent years have brought not only an avalanche of new macromolecular structures, but also significant advances in the protein structure determination methodology only now making their way into structure-based drug discovery. In this paper, we review recent developments resulting from the Structural Genomics (SG) programs, focusing on the methods and results most likely to improve our understanding of the molecular foundation of human diseases. SG programs have been around for almost a decade, and in that time, have contributed a significant part of the structural coverage of both the genomes of pathogens causing infectious diseases and structurally uncharacterized biological processes in general. Perhaps most importantly, SG programs have developed new methodology at all steps of the structure determination process, not only to determine new structures highly efficiently, but also to screen protein/ligand interactions. We describe the methodologies, experience and technologies developed by SG, which range from improvements to cloning protocols to improved procedures for crystallographic structure solution that may be applied in 'traditional' structural biology laboratories particularly those performing drug discovery. We also discuss the conditions that must be met to convert the present high-throughput structure determination pipeline into a high-output structure-based drug discovery system.

  16. Nature’s bounty – drug discovery from the sea

    PubMed Central

    Bowling, John J; Kochanowska, Anna J; Kasanah, Noer; Hamann, Mark T

    2016-01-01

    With ~ 40 years of research completed after the development of self-contained underwater breathing apparatus, drug discovery opportunities in the sea are still too numerous to count. Since the FDA approval of the direct-from-the-sea calcium channel blocker ziconotide, marine natural products have been validated as a source for new medicines. However, the demand for natural products is extremely high due to the development of high-throughput assays and this bottleneck has created the need for an intense focus on increasing the rate of isolating and elucidating the structures of new bioactive secondary metabolites. In addition to highlighting the drug discovery potential of the marine environment, this review discusses several of the pressing needs to increase the rate of drug discovery in marine natural products, and describes some of the work and new technologies that are contributing in this regard. PMID:23484601

  17. Biophysics in drug discovery: impact, challenges and opportunities.

    PubMed

    Renaud, Jean-Paul; Chung, Chun-Wa; Danielson, U Helena; Egner, Ursula; Hennig, Michael; Hubbard, Roderick E; Nar, Herbert

    2016-10-01

    Over the past 25 years, biophysical technologies such as X-ray crystallography, nuclear magnetic resonance spectroscopy, surface plasmon resonance spectroscopy and isothermal titration calorimetry have become key components of drug discovery platforms in many pharmaceutical companies and academic laboratories. There have been great improvements in the speed, sensitivity and range of possible measurements, providing high-resolution mechanistic, kinetic, thermodynamic and structural information on compound-target interactions. This Review provides a framework to understand this evolution by describing the key biophysical methods, the information they can provide and the ways in which they can be applied at different stages of the drug discovery process. We also discuss the challenges for current technologies and future opportunities to use biophysical methods to solve drug discovery problems.

  18. Solubility and dissolution profile assessment in drug discovery.

    PubMed

    Sugano, Kiyohiko; Okazaki, Arimichi; Sugimoto, Shohei; Tavornvipas, Sumitra; Omura, Atsushi; Mano, Takashi

    2007-08-01

    The purposes of the review are to: a) Provide a comprehensible introduction of the-state-of-the-art sciences of solubility and dissolution, b) introduce typical technologies to assess solubility and dissolution, and c) propose the best practice strategy. The theories of solubility and dissolution required in drug discovery were reviewed especially from the view point of oral absorption. The physiological conditions in the gastrointestinal fluid in humans and animals were then briefly summarized. Technologies to assess solubility and dissolution in drug discovery were then introduced. Recently, these technologies have been improved by the laboratory automation and computational technologies. Finally, the strategies to apply these technologies for a drug discovery project were discussed.

  19. Rethinking 'academic' drug discovery: the Manchester Institute perspective.

    PubMed

    Jordan, Allan M; Waddell, Ian D; Ogilvie, Donald J

    2015-05-01

    The contraction in research within pharma has seen a renaissance in drug discovery within the academic setting. Often, groups grow organically from academic research laboratories, exploiting a particular area of novel biology or new technology. However, increasingly, new groups driven by industrial staff are emerging with demonstrable expertise in the delivery of medicines. As part of a strategic review by Cancer Research UK (CR-UK), the drug discovery team at the Manchester Institute was established to translate novel research from the Manchester cancer research community into drug discovery programmes. From a standing start, we have taken innovative approaches to solve key issues faced by similar groups, such as hit finding and target identification. Herein, we share our lessons learnt and successful strategies.

  20. Developing doctoral scientists for drug discovery: pluridimensional education required.

    PubMed

    Janero, David R

    2013-02-01

    Research universities continue to produce new scientists capable of generating knowledge with the potential to inform disease etiology and treatment. Mounting interest of doctoral-level experimental science students in therapeutics-related research careers is discordant with the widespread lack of direct drug-discovery and development experience, let alone commercialization success, among university faculty and administrators. Likewise, the archetypical publication- and grant-fueled, principal investigator (PI)-focused academic system ("PI-stan") risks commoditization of science students pursuing their doctorates as a labor source, rendering them ill-prepared for career options related to therapeutics innovation by marginalizing their development of "beyond-the-bench" professional skills foundational to modern drug-discovery campaigns and career fluency. To militate against professionalization deficits in doctoral drug-discovery researchers, the author--a scientist-administrator-consultant with decades of discovery research and development (R&D), business, and educator experience in commercial and university settings--posits a critical need for pluridimensionality in graduate education and mentorship that extends well beyond thesis-related scientific domains/laboratory techniques to instill transferable operational-intelligence, project/people-management, and communication competencies. Specific initiatives are advocated to help enhance the doctoral science student's market competitiveness, adaptability, and navigation of the significant research, commercial, and occupational challenges associated with contemporary preclinical drug-discovery R&D. PMID:23231364

  1. Developing doctoral scientists for drug discovery: pluridimensional education required.

    PubMed

    Janero, David R

    2013-02-01

    Research universities continue to produce new scientists capable of generating knowledge with the potential to inform disease etiology and treatment. Mounting interest of doctoral-level experimental science students in therapeutics-related research careers is discordant with the widespread lack of direct drug-discovery and development experience, let alone commercialization success, among university faculty and administrators. Likewise, the archetypical publication- and grant-fueled, principal investigator (PI)-focused academic system ("PI-stan") risks commoditization of science students pursuing their doctorates as a labor source, rendering them ill-prepared for career options related to therapeutics innovation by marginalizing their development of "beyond-the-bench" professional skills foundational to modern drug-discovery campaigns and career fluency. To militate against professionalization deficits in doctoral drug-discovery researchers, the author--a scientist-administrator-consultant with decades of discovery research and development (R&D), business, and educator experience in commercial and university settings--posits a critical need for pluridimensionality in graduate education and mentorship that extends well beyond thesis-related scientific domains/laboratory techniques to instill transferable operational-intelligence, project/people-management, and communication competencies. Specific initiatives are advocated to help enhance the doctoral science student's market competitiveness, adaptability, and navigation of the significant research, commercial, and occupational challenges associated with contemporary preclinical drug-discovery R&D.

  2. Psychiatric intervention and repeated admission to emergency centres due to drug overdose

    PubMed Central

    Yamana, Hayato; Yasunaga, Hideo; Matsui, Hiroki; Ando, Shuntaro; Okamura, Tsuyoshi; Kumakura, Yousuke; Fushimi, Kiyohide; Kasai, Kiyoto

    2015-01-01

    Background Repeated drug overdose is a major risk factor for suicide. Data are lacking on the effect of psychiatric intervention on preventing repeated drug overdose. Aims To investigate whether psychiatric intervention was associated with reduced readmission to emergency centres due to drug overdose. Method Using a Japanese national in-patient database, we identified patients who were first admitted to emergency centres for drug overdose in 2010–2012. We used propensity score matching for patient and hospital factors to compare readmission rates between intervention (patients undergoing psychosocial assessment) and unexposed groups. Results Of 29 564 eligible patients, 13 035 underwent psychiatric intervention. In the propensity-matched 7938 pairs, 1304 patients were readmitted because of drug overdose. Readmission rate was lower in the intervention than in the unexposed group (7.3% v. 9.1% respectively, P<0.001). Conclusions Psychiatric intervention was associated with reduced readmission in patients who had taken a drug overdose. Declaration of interest None. Copyright and usage © The Royal College of Psychiatrists 2015. This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Non-Commercial, No Derivatives (CC BY-NC-ND) licence. PMID:27703741

  3. De Novo Fragment Design for Drug Discovery and Chemical Biology.

    PubMed

    Rodrigues, Tiago; Reker, Daniel; Welin, Martin; Caldera, Michael; Brunner, Cyrill; Gabernet, Gisela; Schneider, Petra; Walse, Björn; Schneider, Gisbert

    2015-12-01

    Automated molecular de novo design led to the discovery of an innovative inhibitor of death-associated protein kinase 3 (DAPK3). An unprecedented crystal structure of the inactive DAPK3 homodimer shows the fragment-like hit bound to the ATP pocket. Target prediction software based on machine learning models correctly identified additional macromolecular targets of the computationally designed compound and the structurally related marketed drug azosemide. The study validates computational de novo design as a prime method for generating chemical probes and starting points for drug discovery.

  4. An ontology for description of drug discovery investigations.

    PubMed

    Qi, Da; King, Ross D; Hopkins, Andrew L; Bickerton, G Richard J; Soldatova, Larisa N

    2010-01-01

    The paper presents an ontology for the description of Drug Discovery Investigation (DDI).This has been developed through the use of a Robot Scientist "Eve", and in consultation with industry. DDI aims to define the principle entities and the relations in the research and development phase of the drug discovery pipeline. DDI is highly transferable and extendable due to its adherence to accepted standards, and compliance with existing ontology resources. This enables DDI to be integrated with such related ontologies as the Vaccine Ontology, the Advancing Clinico-Genomic Trials on Cancer Master Ontology, etc. DDI is available at http://purl.org/ddi/wikipedia or http://purl.org/ddi/home.

  5. Schizophrenia risk genes: Implications for future drug development and discovery.

    PubMed

    O'Connell, Garret; Lawrie, Stephen M; McIntosh, Andrew M; Hall, Jeremy

    2011-06-15

    Present-day development of improved treatments for schizophrenia is hindered by uncertain models of disease, inter-individual response variability in clinical trials and a paucity of sensitive measures of treatment effects. Findings from genetic research emphasize the potential for schizophrenia risk genes to help develop focused treatments, discover new drug targets and provide markers of clinical subtypes. Advances in genetic technologies also provide novel modes of drug discovery in schizophrenia such as transcriptomics, epigenetics and transgenic animal models. In this review, we discuss proven and proposed ways risk genes can be used to enhance the development and discovery of treatments for schizophrenia and highlight key studies in these approaches. PMID:21093417

  6. Fragment-Based Drug Discovery Using NMR Spectroscopy

    PubMed Central

    Harner, Mary J.; Frank, Andreas O.; Fesik, Stephen W.

    2013-01-01

    Nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) spectroscopy has evolved into a powerful tool for fragment-based drug discovery over the last two decades. While NMR has been traditionally used to elucidate the three-dimensional structures and dynamics of biomacromolecules and their interactions, it can also be a very valuable tool for the reliable identification of small molecules that bind to proteins and for hit-to-lead optimization. Here, we describe the use of NMR spectroscopy as a method for fragment-based drug discovery and how to most effectively utilize this approach for discovering novel therapeutics based on our experience. PMID:23686385

  7. Phenome-driven disease genetics prediction toward drug discovery

    PubMed Central

    Chen, Yang; Li, Li; Zhang, Guo-Qiang; Xu, Rong

    2015-01-01

    Motivation: Discerning genetic contributions to diseases not only enhances our understanding of disease mechanisms, but also leads to translational opportunities for drug discovery. Recent computational approaches incorporate disease phenotypic similarities to improve the prediction power of disease gene discovery. However, most current studies used only one data source of human disease phenotype. We present an innovative and generic strategy for combining multiple different data sources of human disease phenotype and predicting disease-associated genes from integrated phenotypic and genomic data. Results: To demonstrate our approach, we explored a new phenotype database from biomedical ontologies and constructed Disease Manifestation Network (DMN). We combined DMN with mimMiner, which was a widely used phenotype database in disease gene prediction studies. Our approach achieved significantly improved performance over a baseline method, which used only one phenotype data source. In the leave-one-out cross-validation and de novo gene prediction analysis, our approach achieved the area under the curves of 90.7% and 90.3%, which are significantly higher than 84.2% (P < e−4) and 81.3% (P < e−12) for the baseline approach. We further demonstrated that our predicted genes have the translational potential in drug discovery. We used Crohn’s disease as an example and ranked the candidate drugs based on the rank of drug targets. Our gene prediction approach prioritized druggable genes that are likely to be associated with Crohn’s disease pathogenesis, and our rank of candidate drugs successfully prioritized the Food and Drug Administration-approved drugs for Crohn’s disease. We also found literature evidence to support a number of drugs among the top 200 candidates. In summary, we demonstrated that a novel strategy combining unique disease phenotype data with system approaches can lead to rapid drug discovery. Availability and implementation: nlp

  8. Membrane lipidomics for the discovery of new antiparasitic drug targets.

    PubMed

    Maréchal, Eric; Riou, Mickaël; Kerboeuf, Dominique; Beugnet, Frédéric; Chaminade, Pierre; Loiseau, Philippe M

    2011-11-01

    Advances in lipid separation methods and mass spectrometry technologies allow the fine characterization of the lipidome of parasites, ranging from unicellular protists to worms, which cause threatening infections in vertebrates, including humans. Specific lipid structures or lipid metabolic pathways can inspire the development of novel antiparasitic drugs. Changes in the lipid balance in membranes of parasites can also provide clues on the dynamics of drugs and some mechanisms of drug resistance. This review highlights recent trends in parasite lipidomics, combined with functional analyses, for the discovery of novel targets and the development of novel drugs.

  9. CANDO and the infinite drug discovery frontier

    PubMed Central

    Minie, Mark; Chopra, Gaurav; Sethi, Geetika; Horst, Jeremy; White, George; Roy, Ambrish; Hatti, Kaushik; Samudrala, Ram

    2014-01-01

    The Computational Analysis of Novel Drug Opportunities (CANDO) platform (http://protinfo.org/cando) uses similarity of compound–proteome interaction signatures to infer homology of compound/drug behavior. We constructed interaction signatures for 3733 human ingestible compounds covering 48,278 protein structures mapping to 2030 indications based on basic science methodologies to predict and analyze protein structure, function, and interactions developed by us and others. Our signature comparison and ranking approach yielded benchmarking accuracies of 12–25% for 1439 indications with at least two approved compounds. We prospectively validated 49/82 ‘high value’ predictions from nine studies covering seven indications, with comparable or better activity to existing drugs, which serve as novel repurposed therapeutics. Our approach may be generalized to compounds beyond those approved by the FDA, and can also consider mutations in protein structures to enable personalization. Our platform provides a holistic multiscale modeling framework of complex atomic, molecular, and physiological systems with broader applications in medicine and engineering. PMID:24980786

  10. Can biochemistry drive drug discovery beyond simple potency measurements?

    PubMed

    Chène, Patrick

    2012-04-01

    Among the fields of expertise required to develop drugs successfully, biochemistry holds a key position in drug discovery at the interface between chemistry, structural biology and cell biology. However, taking the example of protein kinases, it appears that biochemical assays are mostly used in the pharmaceutical industry to measure compound potency and/or selectivity. This limited use of biochemistry is surprising, given that detailed biochemical analyses are commonly used in academia to unravel molecular recognition processes. In this article, I show that biochemistry can provide invaluable information on the dynamics and energetics of compound-target interactions that cannot be obtained on the basis of potency measurements and structural data. Therefore, an extensive use of biochemistry in drug discovery could facilitate the identification and/or development of new drugs.

  11. Solid-Phase Biological Assays for Drug Discovery

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Forsberg, Erica M.; Sicard, Clémence; Brennan, John D.

    2014-06-01

    In the past 30 years, there has been a significant growth in the use of solid-phase assays in the area of drug discovery, with a range of new assays being used for both soluble and membrane-bound targets. In this review, we provide some basic background to typical drug targets and immobilization protocols used in solid-phase biological assays (SPBAs) for drug discovery, with emphasis on particularly labile biomolecular targets such as kinases and membrane-bound receptors, and highlight some of the more recent approaches for producing protein microarrays, bioaffinity columns, and other devices that are central to small molecule screening by SPBA. We then discuss key applications of such assays to identify drug leads, with an emphasis on the screening of mixtures. We conclude by highlighting specific advantages and potential disadvantages of SPBAs, particularly as they relate to particular assay formats.

  12. Discovery of small molecule cancer drugs: Successes, challenges and opportunities

    PubMed Central

    Hoelder, Swen; Clarke, Paul A.; Workman, Paul

    2012-01-01

    The discovery and development of small molecule cancer drugs has been revolutionised over the last decade. Most notably, we have moved from a one-size-fits-all approach that emphasized cytotoxic chemotherapy to a personalised medicine strategy that focuses on the discovery and development of molecularly targeted drugs that exploit the particular genetic addictions, dependencies and vulnerabilities of cancer cells. These exploitable characteristics are increasingly being revealed by our expanding understanding of the abnormal biology and genetics of cancer cells, accelerated by cancer genome sequencing and other high-throughput genome-wide campaigns, including functional screens using RNA interference. In this review we provide an overview of contemporary approaches to the discovery of small molecule cancer drugs, highlighting successes, current challenges and future opportunities. We focus in particular on four key steps: Target validation and selection; chemical hit and lead generation; lead optimization to identify a clinical drug candidate; and finally hypothesis-driven, biomarker-led clinical trials. Although all of these steps are critical, we view target validation and selection and the conduct of biology-directed clinical trials as especially important areas upon which to focus to speed progress from gene to drug and to reduce the unacceptably high attrition rate during clinical development. Other challenges include expanding the envelope of druggability for less tractable targets, understanding and overcoming drug resistance, and designing intelligent and effective drug combinations. We discuss not only scientific and technical challenges, but also the assessment and mitigation of risks as well as organizational, cultural and funding problems for cancer drug discovery and development, together with solutions to overcome the ‘Valley of Death’ between basic research and approved medicines. We envisage a future in which addressing these challenges will

  13. Prioritizing the human genome: knowledge management for drug discovery.

    PubMed

    Golden, James B

    2003-05-01

    This review covers recent methods to create a manageable subset of drug targets for development by prioritizing novel genes from the Human Genome Project. The ability to organize genomic data into a distinct set of drug discovery assets can be viewed as a form of knowledge management. While bioinformatics systems have been built to manage genomics-based data, the central theme in creating any bioinformatics infrastructure should be organization-specific knowledge management. PMID:12833662

  14. Targeting autophagic pathways for cancer drug discovery

    PubMed Central

    Liu, Bo; Bao, Jin-Ku; Yang, Jin-Ming; Cheng, Yan

    2013-01-01

    Autophagy, an evolutionarily conserved lysosomal degradation process, has drawn an increasing amount of attention in recent years for its role in a variety of human diseases, such as cancer. Notably, autophagy plays an important role in regulating several survival and death signaling pathways that determine cell fate in cancer. To date, substantial evidence has demonstrated that some key autophagic mediators, such as autophagy-related genes (ATGs), PI3K, mTOR, p53, and Beclin-1, may play crucial roles in modulating autophagic activity in cancer initiation and progression. Because autophagy-modulating agents such as rapamycin and chloroquine have already been used clinically to treat cancer, it is conceivable that targeting autophagic pathways may provide a new opportunity for discovery and development of more novel cancer therapeutics. With a deeper understanding of the regulatory mechanisms governing autophagy, we will have a better opportunity to facilitate the exploitation of autophagy as a target for therapeutic intervention in cancer. This review discusses the current status of targeting autophagic pathways as a potential cancer therapy. PMID:22835386

  15. Antiviral drug discovery against SARS-CoV.

    PubMed

    Wu, Yu-Shan; Lin, Wen-Hsing; Hsu, John T-A; Hsieh, Hsing-Pang

    2006-01-01

    Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS) is a life-threatening infectious disease caused by SARS-CoV. In the 2003 outbreak, it infected more than 8,000 people worldwide and claimed the lives of more than 900 victims. The high mortality rate resulted, at least in part, from the absence of definitive treatment protocols or therapeutic agents. Although the virus spreading has been contained, due preparedness and planning, including the successful development of antiviral drugs against SARS-CoV, is necessary for possible reappearance of SARS. In this review, we have discussed currently available strategies for antiviral drug discovery and how these technologies have been utilized to identify potential antiviral agents for the inhibition of SARS-CoV replication. Moreover, progress in the drug development based on different molecular targets is also summarized, including 1) Compounds that block the S protein-ACE2-mediated viral entry; 2) Compounds targeting SARS-CoV M(pro); 3) Compounds targeting papain-like protease 2 (PLP2); 4) Compounds targeting SARS-CoV RdRp; 5) Compounds targeting SARS-CoV helicase; 6) Active compounds with unspecified targets; and 7) Research on siRNA. This review aims to provide a comprehensive account of drug discovery on SARS. The experiences with the SARS outbreak and drug discovery would certainly be an important lesson for the drug development for any new viral outbreaks that may emerge in the future.

  16. Third Generation Sequencing Techniques and Applications to Drug Discovery

    PubMed Central

    Ozsolak, Fatih

    2012-01-01

    Introduction There is an immediate need for functional and molecular studies to decipher differences between disease and “normal” settings to identify large quantities of validated targets with the highest therapeutic utilities. Furthermore, drug mechanism of action and biomarkers to predict drug efficacy and safety need to be identified for effective design of clinical trials, decreasing attrition rates, regulatory agency approval process and drug repositioning. By expanding the power of genetics and pharmacogenetics studies, next generation nucleic acid sequencing technologies have started to play an important role in all stages of drug discovery. Areas covered This article reviews the first and second generation sequencing technologies (SGSTs) and challenges they pose to biomedicine. The article then focuses on the emerging third generation sequencing technologies (TGSTs), their technological foundations and potential contributions to drug discovery. Expert Opinion Despite the scientific and commercial success of SGSTs, the goal of rapid, comprehensive and unbiased sequencing of nucleic acids has not been achieved. TGSTs promise to increase sequencing throughput and read lengths, decrease costs, run times and error rates, eliminate biases inherent in SGSTs, and offer capabilities beyond nucleic acid sequencing. Such changes will have positive impact in all sequencing applications to drug discovery. PMID:22468954

  17. Systems Biology Approaches to a Rational Drug Discovery Paradigm.

    PubMed

    Prathipati, Philip; Mizuguchi, Kenji

    2016-01-01

    Ligand- and structure-based drug design approaches complement phenotypic and target screens, respectively, and are the two major frameworks for guiding early-stage drug discovery efforts. Since the beginning of this century, the advent of the genomic era has presented researchers with a myriad of high throughput biological data (parts lists and their interaction networks) to address efficacy and toxicity, augmenting the traditional ligand- and structure-based approaches. This data rich era has also presented us with challenges related to integrating and analyzing these multi-platform and multi-dimensional datasets and translating them into viable hypotheses. Hence in the present paper, we review these existing approaches to drug discovery research and argue the case for a new systems biology based approach. We present the basic principles and the foundational arguments/underlying assumptions of the systems biology based approaches to drug design. Also discussed are systems biology data types (key entities, their attributes and their relationships with each other, and data models/representations), software and tools used for both retrospective and prospective analysis, and the hypotheses that can be inferred. In addition, we summarize some of the existing resources for a systems biology based drug discovery paradigm (open TG-GATEs, DrugMatrix, CMap and LINCs) in terms of their strengths and limitations. PMID:26306988

  18. Systems Biology Approaches to a Rational Drug Discovery Paradigm.

    PubMed

    Prathipati, Philip; Mizuguchi, Kenji

    2016-01-01

    Ligand- and structure-based drug design approaches complement phenotypic and target screens, respectively, and are the two major frameworks for guiding early-stage drug discovery efforts. Since the beginning of this century, the advent of the genomic era has presented researchers with a myriad of high throughput biological data (parts lists and their interaction networks) to address efficacy and toxicity, augmenting the traditional ligand- and structure-based approaches. This data rich era has also presented us with challenges related to integrating and analyzing these multi-platform and multi-dimensional datasets and translating them into viable hypotheses. Hence in the present paper, we review these existing approaches to drug discovery research and argue the case for a new systems biology based approach. We present the basic principles and the foundational arguments/underlying assumptions of the systems biology based approaches to drug design. Also discussed are systems biology data types (key entities, their attributes and their relationships with each other, and data models/representations), software and tools used for both retrospective and prospective analysis, and the hypotheses that can be inferred. In addition, we summarize some of the existing resources for a systems biology based drug discovery paradigm (open TG-GATEs, DrugMatrix, CMap and LINCs) in terms of their strengths and limitations.

  19. Scientific workflows as productivity tools for drug discovery.

    PubMed

    Shon, John; Ohkawa, Hitomi; Hammer, Juergen

    2008-05-01

    Large pharmaceutical companies annually invest tens to hundreds of millions of US dollars in research informatics to support their early drug discovery processes. Traditionally, most of these investments are designed to increase the efficiency of drug discovery. The introduction of do-it-yourself scientific workflow platforms has enabled research informatics organizations to shift their efforts toward scientific innovation, ultimately resulting in a possible increase in return on their investments. Unlike the handling of most scientific data and application integration approaches, researchers apply scientific workflows to in silico experimentation and exploration, leading to scientific discoveries that lie beyond automation and integration. This review highlights some key requirements for scientific workflow environments in the pharmaceutical industry that are necessary for increasing research productivity. Examples of the application of scientific workflows in research and a summary of recent platform advances are also provided.

  20. From bench to patient: model systems in drug discovery

    PubMed Central

    Breyer, Matthew D.; Look, A. Thomas; Cifra, Alessandra

    2015-01-01

    ABSTRACT Model systems, including laboratory animals, microorganisms, and cell- and tissue-based systems, are central to the discovery and development of new and better drugs for the treatment of human disease. In this issue, Disease Models & Mechanisms launches a Special Collection that illustrates the contribution of model systems to drug discovery and optimisation across multiple disease areas. This collection includes reviews, Editorials, interviews with leading scientists with a foot in both academia and industry, and original research articles reporting new and important insights into disease therapeutics. This Editorial provides a summary of the collection's current contents, highlighting the impact of multiple model systems in moving new discoveries from the laboratory bench to the patients' bedsides. PMID:26438689

  1. Psychiatric Diagnosis, Substance Use and Dependence, and Arrests among Former Recipients of Supplemental Security Income for Drug Abuse and Alcoholism

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Swartz, James A.; Lurigio, Arthur J.

    2004-01-01

    This study examines the associations among substance use and psychiatric disorders on arrests in a sample of 187 former recipients of Supplemental Security Income for drug addiction and alcoholism. Participants were interviewed at baseline and at 12, 18, and 24 months. Primary measures included urine tests for recent drug use, psychiatric and…

  2. Competitive intelligence and patent analysis in drug discovery.

    PubMed

    Grandjean, Nicolas; Charpiot, Brigitte; Pena, Carlos Andres; Peitsch, Manuel C

    2005-01-01

    Patents are a major source of information in drug discovery and, when properly processed and analyzed, can yield a wealth of information on competitors activities, R&D trends, emerging fields, collaborations, among others. This review discusses the current state-of-the-art in textual data analysis and exploration methods as applied to patent analysis.:

  3. Open data in drug discovery and development: lessons from malaria.

    PubMed

    Wells, Timothy N C; Willis, Paul; Burrows, Jeremy N; Hooft van Huijsduijnen, Rob

    2016-10-01

    There is a growing consensus that drug discovery thrives in an open environment. Here, we describe how the malaria community has embraced four levels of open data - open science, open innovation, open access and open source - to catalyse the development of new medicines, and consider principles that could enable open data approaches to be applied to other disease areas.

  4. The Role of Target Binding Kinetics in Drug Discovery.

    PubMed

    Guo, Dong; Heitman, Laura H; IJzerman, Adriaan P

    2015-11-01

    Traditionally structure-activity/affinity relationships (SAR) have dominated research in medicinal chemistry. However, structure-kinetics relationships (SKR) can be very informative too. In this viewpoint we explore the molecular determinants of binding kinetics and discuss challenges for future binding kinetics studies. A scheme for future kinetics-directed drug design and discovery is also proposed.

  5. [Psychiatric drugs as risk factor in fatal heat stroke].

    PubMed

    Fijnheer, R; van de Ven, P J; Erkelens, D W

    1995-07-01

    Two men aged 33 and 31 years suffered a fatal heat stroke on a warm summer day. One of them used pimozide and clomipramine, the other zuclopenthixol, dexetimide, droperidol, promethazine and propranolol as psychiatric medication. Both of them had a body temperature > 42.3 degrees C, without perspiring. At first only a comatose situation with practically normal laboratory values existed; this was rapidly followed by massive liver damage, disseminated intravascular coagulation, anaemia, thrombopenia and acute renal failure. In spite of adequate and rapid treatment these complications were fatal. Both patients used medication with an antidopaminergic and anticholinergic (side) effect. The set point of the temperature regulation centre can be elevated by the antidopaminergic activity of antipsychotics. Use of anticholinergic medication can disturb the thermoregulation via inhibition of the parasympathicomimetically mediated sweat secretion. It is recommended to point out the danger of unusually high outdoor temperatures to patients using this medication. PMID:7617062

  6. Profiling the kinome for drug discovery.

    PubMed

    Yan, S Frank; King, Frederick J; Zhou, Yingyao; Warmuth, Markus; Xia, Gang

    2006-01-01

    The human kinome is made up of 518 distinctive serine/threonine and tyrosine kinases, which are key components of virtually every mammalian signal transduction pathway. Consequently, kinases provide a compelling target family for the development of small molecule inhibitors, which could be used as tools to delineate the mechanism of action for biological processes and potentially be used as therapeutics to treat human diseases such as cancer. A myriad of recent technological advances have accelerated our understanding of kinome function, its relationship to tumorigenic development, and have contributed to the progression of small molecule kinase inhibitors into the clinic. Essential to the continued growth of the field are informatics tools that can assist in interpreting disparate and voluminous data sets and correctly guide decision making processes. These advances are expected to have a dramatic impact on kinase drug development and clinical diagnoses and treatment in the near future.:

  7. Toxoplasmosis, Pancreatitis, Obesity and Drug Discovery

    PubMed Central

    Oz, Helieh S.

    2014-01-01

    Toxoplasmosis, an infectious and inflammatory syndrome, is one of the most important foodborne diseases causing hospitalization and death in U.S.A. Toxoplasma infects nucleated cells including pancreatic and destroys the β cells. Toxoplasma is a Category B classified infection by CDC and NIH, which once infected the organisms reside in tissues in cysts form for the host’s lifelong awaiting reactivation. Congenital toxoplasmosis occurs by transplacental transmission during maternal infection or reactivation of organisms and manifests with spontaneous abortion, or severe physical and mental defects. Currently, there is no safe and effective therapeutic modality against congenital toxoplasmosis or the persistent chronic infection. Here, toxoplasmosis and possible involvement of infection in induction of pancreatitis, and an experimental drug efficacy is discussed. PMID:25530920

  8. High-throughput protein crystallography and drug discovery.

    PubMed

    Tickle, Ian; Sharff, Andrew; Vinkovic, Mladen; Yon, Jeff; Jhoti, Harren

    2004-10-20

    Single crystal X-ray diffraction is the technique of choice for studying the interactions of small organic molecules with proteins by determining their three-dimensional structures; however the requirement for highly purified protein and lack of process automation have traditionally limited its use in this field. Despite these shortcomings, the use of crystal structures of therapeutically relevant drug targets in pharmaceutical research has increased significantly over the last decade. The application of structure-based drug design has resulted in several marketed drugs and is now an established discipline in most pharmaceutical companies. Furthermore, the recently published full genome sequences of Homo sapiens and a number of micro-organisms have provided a plethora of new potential drug targets that could be utilised in structure-based drug design programs. In order to take maximum advantage of this explosion of information, techniques have been developed to automate and speed up the various procedures required to obtain protein crystals of suitable quality, to collect and process the raw X-ray diffraction data into usable structural information, and to use three-dimensional protein structure as a basis for drug discovery and lead optimisation. This tutorial review covers the various technologies involved in the process pipeline for high-throughput protein crystallography as it is currently being applied to drug discovery. It is aimed at synthetic and computational chemists, as well as structural biologists, in both academia and industry, who are interested in structure-based drug design.

  9. Role of Molecular Dynamics and Related Methods in Drug Discovery.

    PubMed

    De Vivo, Marco; Masetti, Matteo; Bottegoni, Giovanni; Cavalli, Andrea

    2016-05-12

    Molecular dynamics (MD) and related methods are close to becoming routine computational tools for drug discovery. Their main advantage is in explicitly treating structural flexibility and entropic effects. This allows a more accurate estimate of the thermodynamics and kinetics associated with drug-target recognition and binding, as better algorithms and hardware architectures increase their use. Here, we review the theoretical background of MD and enhanced sampling methods, focusing on free-energy perturbation, metadynamics, steered MD, and other methods most consistently used to study drug-target binding. We discuss unbiased MD simulations that nowadays allow the observation of unsupervised ligand-target binding, assessing how these approaches help optimizing target affinity and drug residence time toward improved drug efficacy. Further issues discussed include allosteric modulation and the role of water molecules in ligand binding and optimization. We conclude by calling for more prospective studies to attest to these methods' utility in discovering novel drug candidates. PMID:26807648

  10. Diamond: shedding light on structure-based drug discovery.

    PubMed

    Brown, David G; Shotton, Elizabeth J

    2015-03-01

    Structure-based drug design has become a key tool for the development of novel drugs. The process involves elucidating the three-dimensional structure of the potential drug molecule bound to the target protein that has been identified as playing a key role in the disease state. Using this three-dimensional information facilitates the process of making improvements to the potential drug molecule by highlighting existing and possible new interactions within the binding site. This knowledge is used to inform increases in potency and selectivity of the molecules as well as to help improve other drug-like properties. The speed and numbers of samples that can be studied, combined with the improved resolution of the structures that can be obtained using synchrotron radiation, have had a significant impact on the utilization of crystallography in the drug discovery process. PMID:25624512

  11. Role of computer-aided drug design in modern drug discovery.

    PubMed

    Macalino, Stephani Joy Y; Gosu, Vijayakumar; Hong, Sunhye; Choi, Sun

    2015-09-01

    Drug discovery utilizes chemical biology and computational drug design approaches for the efficient identification and optimization of lead compounds. Chemical biology is mostly involved in the elucidation of the biological function of a target and the mechanism of action of a chemical modulator. On the other hand, computer-aided drug design makes use of the structural knowledge of either the target (structure-based) or known ligands with bioactivity (ligand-based) to facilitate the determination of promising candidate drugs. Various virtual screening techniques are now being used by both pharmaceutical companies and academic research groups to reduce the cost and time required for the discovery of a potent drug. Despite the rapid advances in these methods, continuous improvements are critical for future drug discovery tools. Advantages presented by structure-based and ligand-based drug design suggest that their complementary use, as well as their integration with experimental routines, has a powerful impact on rational drug design. In this article, we give an overview of the current computational drug design and their application in integrated rational drug development to aid in the progress of drug discovery research.

  12. Twenty years on: the impact of fragments on drug discovery.

    PubMed

    Erlanson, Daniel A; Fesik, Stephen W; Hubbard, Roderick E; Jahnke, Wolfgang; Jhoti, Harren

    2016-09-01

    After 20 years of sometimes quiet growth, fragment-based drug discovery (FBDD) has become mainstream. More than 30 drug candidates derived from fragments have entered the clinic, with two approved and several more in advanced trials. FBDD has been widely applied in both academia and industry, as evidenced by the large number of papers from universities, non-profit research institutions, biotechnology companies and pharmaceutical companies. Moreover, FBDD draws on a diverse range of disciplines, from biochemistry and biophysics to computational and medicinal chemistry. As the promise of FBDD strategies becomes increasingly realized, now is an opportune time to draw lessons and point the way to the future. This Review briefly discusses how to design fragment libraries, how to select screening techniques and how to make the most of information gleaned from them. It also shows how concepts from FBDD have permeated and enhanced drug discovery efforts. PMID:27417849

  13. Organs-on-chips at the frontiers of drug discovery

    PubMed Central

    Esch, Eric W.; Bahinski, Anthony; Huh, Dongeun

    2016-01-01

    Improving the effectiveness of preclinical predictions of human drug responses is critical to reducing costly failures in clinical trials. Recent advances in cell biology, microfabrication and microfluidics have enabled the development of microengineered models of the functional units of human organs — known as organs-on-chips — that could provide the basis for preclinical assays with greater predictive power. Here, we examine the new opportunities for the application of organ-on-chip technologies in a range of areas in preclinical drug discovery, such as target identification and validation, target-based screening, and phenotypic screening. We also discuss emerging drug discovery opportunities enabled by organs-on-chips, as well as important challenges in realizing the full potential of this technology. PMID:25792263

  14. Drug design and discovery: translational biomedical science varies among countries.

    PubMed

    Weaver, Ian N; Weaver, Donald F

    2013-10-01

    Drug design and discovery is an innovation process that translates the outcomes of fundamental biomedical research into therapeutics that are ultimately made available to people with medical disorders in many countries throughout the world. To identify which nations succeed, exceed, or fail at the drug design/discovery endeavor--more specifically, which countries, within the context of their national size and wealth, are "pulling their weight" when it comes to developing medications targeting the myriad of diseases that afflict humankind--we compiled and analyzed a comprehensive survey of all new drugs (small molecular entities and biologics) approved annually throughout the world over the 20-year period from 1991 to 2010. Based upon this analysis, we have devised prediction algorithms to ascertain which countries are successful (or not) in contributing to the worldwide need for effective new therapeutics.

  15. Drug Discovery and Development of Antimalarial Agents: Recent Advances.

    PubMed

    Thota, Sreekanth; Yerra, Rajeshwar

    2016-01-01

    Malaria, a deadly infectious parasitic disease, is a major issue of public health in the world today and already produces serious economic constraints in the endemic countries. Most of the malarial infections and deaths are due to Plasmodium falciparum and Plasmodium vivax species. The recent emergence of resistance necessitates the search for new antimalarial drugs, which overcome the resistance and act through new mechanisms. Although much effort has been directed towards the discovery of novel antimalarial drugs. 4-anilino quinolone triazines as potent antimalarial agents, their in silico modelling and bioevaluation as Plasmodium falciparum transketolase and β-hematin inhibitors has been reported. This review is primarily focused on the drug discovery of the recent advances in the development of antimalarial agents and their mechanism of action.

  16. Ion channel profiling to advance drug discovery and development.

    PubMed

    Zou, Beiyan

    2015-11-01

    In vitro pharmacological profiling provides crucial information to eliminate drug candidates with potential toxicity early in drug discovery and reduce failure in later stages. It has become a common practice in industry to test lead compounds against a panel of ion channel targets for selectivity and safety liability at early drug discovery stages. Ion channel profiling technologies include binding assays, flux assays, fluorescent membrane potential assays, automated and conventional electrophysiology. Instead of examining compound effects on individual ion channel targets, automated current clamp, optical electrophysiology, and multi-electrode assays have evolved to investigate the integrated compound effects on cardiac myocytes. This review aims to provide an overview of ion channel profiling for cardiac safety and comparisons of various technologies.

  17. Antibody-enabled small-molecule drug discovery.

    PubMed

    Lawson, Alastair D G

    2012-06-29

    Although antibody-based therapeutics have become firmly established as medicines for serious diseases, the value of antibodies as tools in the early stages of small-molecule drug discovery is only beginning to be realized. In particular, antibodies may provide information to reduce risk in small-molecule drug discovery by enabling the validation of targets and by providing insights into the design of small-molecule screening assays. Moreover, antibodies can act as guides in the quest for small molecules that have the ability to modulate protein-protein interactions, which have traditionally only been considered to be tractable targets for biological drugs. The development of small molecules that have similar therapeutic effects to current biologics has the potential to benefit a broader range of patients at earlier stages of disease.

  18. Medicinal chemistry inspired fragment-based drug discovery.

    PubMed

    Lanter, James; Zhang, Xuqing; Sui, Zhihua

    2011-01-01

    Lead generation can be a very challenging phase of the drug discovery process. The two principal methods for this stage of research are blind screening and rational design. Among the rational or semirational design approaches, fragment-based drug discovery (FBDD) has emerged as a useful tool for the generation of lead structures. It is particularly powerful as a complement to high-throughput screening approaches when the latter failed to yield viable hits for further development. Engagement of medicinal chemists early in the process can accelerate the progression of FBDD efforts by incorporating drug-friendly properties in the earliest stages of the design process. Medium-chain acyl-CoA synthetase 2b and ketohexokinase are chosen as examples to illustrate the importance of close collaboration of medicinal chemists, crystallography, and modeling. PMID:21371600

  19. Advances in tau-based drug discovery

    PubMed Central

    Noble, Wendy; Pooler, Amy M.; Hanger, Diane P.

    2011-01-01

    Introduction Tauopathies, including Alzheimer’s disease (AD) and some frontotemporal dementias, are neurodegenerative diseases characterised by pathological lesions comprised of tau protein. There is currently a significant and urgent unmet need for disease-modifying therapies for these conditions and recently attention has turned to tau as a potential target for intervention. Areas covered Increasing evidence has highlighted pathways associated with tau-mediated neurodegeneration as important targets for drug development. Here, the authors review recently published papers in this area and summarise the genetic and pharmacological approaches that have shown efficacy in reducing tau-associated neurodegeneration. These include the use of agents to prevent abnormal tau processing and increase tau clearance, therapies targeting the immune system, and the manipulation of tau pre-mRNA to modify tau isoform expression. Expert opinion Several small molecule tau-based treatments are currently being assessed in clinical trials, the outcomes of which are eagerly awaited. Current evidence suggests that therapies targeting tau are likely, at least in part, to form the basis of an effective and safe treatment for Alzheimer’s disease and related neurodegenerative disorders in which tau deposition is evident. PMID:22003359

  20. The tuberculosis drug discovery and development pipeline and emerging drug targets.

    PubMed

    Mdluli, Khisimuzi; Kaneko, Takushi; Upton, Anna

    2015-06-01

    The recent accelerated approval for use in extensively drug-resistant and multidrug-resistant-tuberculosis (MDR-TB) of two first-in-class TB drugs, bedaquiline and delamanid, has reinvigorated the TB drug discovery and development field. However, although several promising clinical development programs are ongoing to evaluate new TB drugs and regimens, the number of novel series represented is few. The global early-development pipeline is also woefully thin. To have a chance of achieving the goal of better, shorter, safer TB drug regimens with utility against drug-sensitive and drug-resistant disease, a robust and diverse global TB drug discovery pipeline is key, including innovative approaches that make use of recently acquired knowledge on the biology of TB. Fortunately, drug discovery for TB has resurged in recent years, generating compounds with varying potential for progression into developable leads. In parallel, advances have been made in understanding TB pathogenesis. It is now possible to apply the lessons learned from recent TB hit generation efforts and newly validated TB drug targets to generate the next wave of TB drug leads. Use of currently underexploited sources of chemical matter and lead-optimization strategies may also improve the efficiency of future TB drug discovery. Novel TB drug regimens with shorter treatment durations must target all subpopulations of Mycobacterium tuberculosis existing in an infection, including those responsible for the protracted TB treatment duration. This review summarizes the current TB drug development pipeline and proposes strategies for generating improved hits and leads in the discovery phase that could help achieve this goal. PMID:25635061

  1. Drug discovery for alopecia: gone today, hair tomorrow

    PubMed Central

    Santos, Zenildo; Avci, Pinar; Hamblin, Michael R

    2015-01-01

    Introduction Hair loss or alopecia affects the majority of the population at some time in their life, and increasingly, sufferers are demanding treatment. Three main types of alopecia (androgenic [AGA], areata [AA] and chemotherapy-induced [CIA]) are very different, and have their own laboratory models and separate drug-discovery efforts. Areas covered In this article, the authors review the biology of hair, hair follicle (HF) cycling, stem cells and signaling pathways. AGA, due to dihydrotesterone, is treated by 5-α reductase inhibitors, androgen receptor blockers and ATP-sensitive potassium channel-openers. AA, which involves attack by CD8+NK group 2D-positive (NKG2D+) T cells, is treated with immunosuppressives, biologics and JAK inhibitors. Meanwhile, CIA is treated by apoptosis inhibitors, cytokines and topical immunotherapy. Expert opinion The desire to treat alopecia with an easy topical preparation is expected to grow with time, particularly with an increasing aging population. The discovery of epidermal stem cells in the HF has given new life to the search for a cure for baldness. Drug discovery efforts are being increasingly centered on these stem cells, boosting the hair cycle and reversing miniaturization of HF. Better understanding of the molecular mechanisms underlying the immune attack in AA will yield new drugs. New discoveries in HF neogenesis and low-level light therapy will undoubtedly have a role to play. PMID:25662177

  2. Cloud computing approaches to accelerate drug discovery value chain.

    PubMed

    Garg, Vibhav; Arora, Suchir; Gupta, Chitra

    2011-12-01

    Continued advancements in the area of technology have helped high throughput screening (HTS) evolve from a linear to parallel approach by performing system level screening. Advanced experimental methods used for HTS at various steps of drug discovery (i.e. target identification, target validation, lead identification and lead validation) can generate data of the order of terabytes. As a consequence, there is pressing need to store, manage, mine and analyze this data to identify informational tags. This need is again posing challenges to computer scientists to offer the matching hardware and software infrastructure, while managing the varying degree of desired computational power. Therefore, the potential of "On-Demand Hardware" and "Software as a Service (SAAS)" delivery mechanisms cannot be denied. This on-demand computing, largely referred to as Cloud Computing, is now transforming the drug discovery research. Also, integration of Cloud computing with parallel computing is certainly expanding its footprint in the life sciences community. The speed, efficiency and cost effectiveness have made cloud computing a 'good to have tool' for researchers, providing them significant flexibility, allowing them to focus on the 'what' of science and not the 'how'. Once reached to its maturity, Discovery-Cloud would fit best to manage drug discovery and clinical development data, generated using advanced HTS techniques, hence supporting the vision of personalized medicine.

  3. Large-scale Direct Targeting for Drug Repositioning and Discovery.

    PubMed

    Zheng, Chunli; Guo, Zihu; Huang, Chao; Wu, Ziyin; Li, Yan; Chen, Xuetong; Fu, Yingxue; Ru, Jinlong; Ali Shar, Piar; Wang, Yuan; Wang, Yonghua

    2015-01-01

    A system-level identification of drug-target direct interactions is vital to drug repositioning and discovery. However, the biological means on a large scale remains challenging and expensive even nowadays. The available computational models mainly focus on predicting indirect interactions or direct interactions on a small scale. To address these problems, in this work, a novel algorithm termed weighted ensemble similarity (WES) has been developed to identify drug direct targets based on a large-scale of 98,327 drug-target relationships. WES includes: (1) identifying the key ligand structural features that are highly-related to the pharmacological properties in a framework of ensemble; (2) determining a drug's affiliation of a target by evaluation of the overall similarity (ensemble) rather than a single ligand judgment; and (3) integrating the standardized ensemble similarities (Z score) by Bayesian network and multi-variate kernel approach to make predictions. All these lead WES to predict drug direct targets with external and experimental test accuracies of 70% and 71%, respectively. This shows that the WES method provides a potential in silico model for drug repositioning and discovery.

  4. Small Molecules from Nature Targeting G-Protein Coupled Cannabinoid Receptors: Potential Leads for Drug Discovery and Development

    PubMed Central

    Sharma, Charu; Sadek, Bassem; Goyal, Sameer N.; Sinha, Satyesh; Ojha, Shreesh

    2015-01-01

    The cannabinoid molecules are derived from Cannabis sativa plant which acts on the cannabinoid receptors types 1 and 2 (CB1 and CB2) which have been explored as potential therapeutic targets for drug discovery and development. Currently, there are numerous cannabinoid based synthetic drugs used in clinical practice like the popular ones such as nabilone, dronabinol, and Δ9-tetrahydrocannabinol mediates its action through CB1/CB2 receptors. However, these synthetic based Cannabis derived compounds are known to exert adverse psychiatric effect and have also been exploited for drug abuse. This encourages us to find out an alternative and safe drug with the least psychiatric adverse effects. In recent years, many phytocannabinoids have been isolated from plants other than Cannabis. Several studies have shown that these phytocannabinoids show affinity, potency, selectivity, and efficacy towards cannabinoid receptors and inhibit endocannabinoid metabolizing enzymes, thus reducing hyperactivity of endocannabinoid systems. Also, these naturally derived molecules possess the least adverse effects opposed to the synthetically derived cannabinoids. Therefore, the plant based cannabinoid molecules proved to be promising and emerging therapeutic alternative. The present review provides an overview of therapeutic potential of ligands and plants modulating cannabinoid receptors that may be of interest to pharmaceutical industry in search of new and safer drug discovery and development for future therapeutics. PMID:26664449

  5. Small Molecules from Nature Targeting G-Protein Coupled Cannabinoid Receptors: Potential Leads for Drug Discovery and Development.

    PubMed

    Sharma, Charu; Sadek, Bassem; Goyal, Sameer N; Sinha, Satyesh; Kamal, Mohammad Amjad; Ojha, Shreesh

    2015-01-01

    The cannabinoid molecules are derived from Cannabis sativa plant which acts on the cannabinoid receptors types 1 and 2 (CB1 and CB2) which have been explored as potential therapeutic targets for drug discovery and development. Currently, there are numerous cannabinoid based synthetic drugs used in clinical practice like the popular ones such as nabilone, dronabinol, and Δ(9)-tetrahydrocannabinol mediates its action through CB1/CB2 receptors. However, these synthetic based Cannabis derived compounds are known to exert adverse psychiatric effect and have also been exploited for drug abuse. This encourages us to find out an alternative and safe drug with the least psychiatric adverse effects. In recent years, many phytocannabinoids have been isolated from plants other than Cannabis. Several studies have shown that these phytocannabinoids show affinity, potency, selectivity, and efficacy towards cannabinoid receptors and inhibit endocannabinoid metabolizing enzymes, thus reducing hyperactivity of endocannabinoid systems. Also, these naturally derived molecules possess the least adverse effects opposed to the synthetically derived cannabinoids. Therefore, the plant based cannabinoid molecules proved to be promising and emerging therapeutic alternative. The present review provides an overview of therapeutic potential of ligands and plants modulating cannabinoid receptors that may be of interest to pharmaceutical industry in search of new and safer drug discovery and development for future therapeutics. PMID:26664449

  6. Small Molecules from Nature Targeting G-Protein Coupled Cannabinoid Receptors: Potential Leads for Drug Discovery and Development.

    PubMed

    Sharma, Charu; Sadek, Bassem; Goyal, Sameer N; Sinha, Satyesh; Kamal, Mohammad Amjad; Ojha, Shreesh

    2015-01-01

    The cannabinoid molecules are derived from Cannabis sativa plant which acts on the cannabinoid receptors types 1 and 2 (CB1 and CB2) which have been explored as potential therapeutic targets for drug discovery and development. Currently, there are numerous cannabinoid based synthetic drugs used in clinical practice like the popular ones such as nabilone, dronabinol, and Δ(9)-tetrahydrocannabinol mediates its action through CB1/CB2 receptors. However, these synthetic based Cannabis derived compounds are known to exert adverse psychiatric effect and have also been exploited for drug abuse. This encourages us to find out an alternative and safe drug with the least psychiatric adverse effects. In recent years, many phytocannabinoids have been isolated from plants other than Cannabis. Several studies have shown that these phytocannabinoids show affinity, potency, selectivity, and efficacy towards cannabinoid receptors and inhibit endocannabinoid metabolizing enzymes, thus reducing hyperactivity of endocannabinoid systems. Also, these naturally derived molecules possess the least adverse effects opposed to the synthetically derived cannabinoids. Therefore, the plant based cannabinoid molecules proved to be promising and emerging therapeutic alternative. The present review provides an overview of therapeutic potential of ligands and plants modulating cannabinoid receptors that may be of interest to pharmaceutical industry in search of new and safer drug discovery and development for future therapeutics.

  7. High-throughput crystallography for lead discovery in drug design.

    PubMed

    Blundell, Tom L; Jhoti, Harren; Abell, Chris

    2002-01-01

    Knowledge of the three-dimensional structures of protein targets now emerging from genomic data has the potential to accelerate drug discovery greatly. X-ray crystallography is the most widely used technique for protein structure determination, but technical challenges and time constraints have traditionally limited its use primarily to lead optimization. Here, we describe how significant advances in process automation and informatics have aided the development of high-throughput X-ray crystallography, and discuss the use of this technique for structure-based lead discovery.

  8. Psychiatric and cardiovascular comorbidities in patients with diabetes mellitus starting antiobesity drugs.

    PubMed

    Willemen, Marjolein J; Mantel-Teeuwisse, Aukje K; Straus, Sabine M; Leufkens, Hubert G; Egberts, Antoine C

    2008-10-01

    The aim of the study was to assess whether the baseline risk of psychiatric and cardiovascular disease in patients with diabetes mellitus differs between those starting to use antiobesity drugs and those not starting to use these drugs. A retrospective nested case-control study within the General Practice Research Database (1987-2002) was done. The cohort included all patients with diabetes mellitus (n = 141,164). Information on patient characteristics (general, cardiovascular, and psychiatric characteristics) was extracted from the medical records. Crude odds ratios (ORs) and 95% confidence intervals (CIs) were calculated. A total of 511 patients starting to use antiobesity drugs (cases) and 3,065 controls were included in the study cohort. Starters were younger and more frequently female. Of the starters, 91.8% did not receive any dietary advice before starting treatment. Depression (in the year before index date) was associated with the use of antiobesity drugs (OR 2.2; 95% CI 1.7-2.8), as was anxiety (OR 1.6; 95% CI 1.1-2.4). Of the cases, 25.2% had multiple cardiovascular risk factors (>4) compared to 19.0% of the controls. The baseline risk for psychiatric disorders and cardiovascular disease was found to be higher in patients with diabetes mellitus starting to use antiobesity drugs compared to patients with diabetes mellitus not starting such treatment.

  9. Putative impact of RNA editing on drug discovery.

    PubMed

    Decher, Niels; Netter, Michael F; Streit, Anne K

    2013-01-01

    Virtually all organisms use RNA editing as a powerful post-transcriptional mechanism to recode genomic information and to increase functional protein diversity. The enzymatic editing of pre-mRNA by ADARs and CDARs is known to change the functional properties of neuronal receptors and ion channels regulating cellular excitability. However, RNA editing is also an important mechanism for genes expressed outside the brain. The fact that RNA editing breaks the 'one gene encodes one protein' hypothesis is daunting for scientists and a probable drawback for drug development, as scientists might search for drugs targeting the 'wrong' protein. This possible difficulty for drug discovery and development became more evident from recent publications, describing that RNA editing events have profound impact on the pharmacology of some common drug targets. These recent studies highlight that RNA editing can cause massive discrepancies between the in vitro and in vivo pharmacology. Here, we review the putative impact of RNA editing on drug discovery, as RNA editing has to be considered before using high-throughput screens, rational drug design or choosing the right model organism for target validation.

  10. Emerging Concepts and Approaches for Chemokine-Receptor Drug Discovery

    PubMed Central

    O’Hayre, Morgan; Salanga, Catherina L.; Handel, Tracy M.; Hamel, Damon J.

    2010-01-01

    Importance of the field Chemokine receptors are G protein-coupled receptors (GPCRs) most noted for their role in cell migration. However, inappropriate utilization or regulation of these receptors is implicated in many inflammatory diseases, cancer and HIV, making them important drug targets. Areas covered in this review Allostery, oligomerization, and ligand bias are presented as they pertain to chemokine receptors and their associated pathologies. Specific examples of each are described from the recent literature and their implications are discussed in terms of drug discovery efforts targeting chemokine receptors. What the reader will gain Insight into the expanding view of the multitude of pharmacological variables that need to be considered or that may be exploited in chemokine receptor drug discovery. Take home message Since 2007, two drugs targeting chemokine receptors have been approved by the FDA, Maraviroc for preventing HIV infection and Mozobil™ for hematopoietic stem cell mobilization. While these successes permit optimism for chemokine receptors as drug targets, only recently has the complexity of this system begun to be appreciated. The concepts of allosteric inhibitors, biased ligands and functional selectivity raise the possibility that drugs with precisely-defined properties can be developed. Other complexities such as receptor oligomerization and tissue-specific functional states of receptors also offer opportunities for increased target and response specificity, although it will be more challenging to translate these ideas into approved therapeutics compared to traditional approaches. PMID:21132095

  11. Potential of agricultural fungicides for antifungal drug discovery.

    PubMed

    Jampilek, Josef

    2016-01-01

    While it is true that only a small fraction of fungal species are responsible for human mycoses, the increasing prevalence of fungal diseases has highlighted an urgent need to develop new antifungal drugs, especially for systemic administration. This contribution focuses on the similarities between agricultural fungicides and drugs. Inorganic, organometallic and organic compounds can be found amongst agricultural fungicides. Furthermore, fungicides are designed and developed in a similar fashion to drugs based on similar rules and guidelines, with fungicides also having to meet similar criteria of lead-likeness and/or drug-likeness. Modern approved specific-target fungicides are well-characterized entities with a proposed structure-activity relationships hypothesis and a defined mode of action. Extensive toxicological evaluation, including mammalian toxicology assays, is performed during the whole discovery and development process. Thus modern agrochemical research (design of modern agrochemicals) comes close to drug design, discovery and development. Therefore, modern specific-target fungicides represent excellent lead-like structures/models for novel drug design and development.

  12. Large-scale Direct Targeting for Drug Repositioning and Discovery

    PubMed Central

    Zheng, Chunli; Guo, Zihu; Huang, Chao; Wu, Ziyin; Li, Yan; Chen, Xuetong; Fu, Yingxue; Ru, Jinlong; Ali Shar, Piar; Wang, Yuan; Wang, Yonghua

    2015-01-01

    A system-level identification of drug-target direct interactions is vital to drug repositioning and discovery. However, the biological means on a large scale remains challenging and expensive even nowadays. The available computational models mainly focus on predicting indirect interactions or direct interactions on a small scale. To address these problems, in this work, a novel algorithm termed weighted ensemble similarity (WES) has been developed to identify drug direct targets based on a large-scale of 98,327 drug-target relationships. WES includes: (1) identifying the key ligand structural features that are highly-related to the pharmacological properties in a framework of ensemble; (2) determining a drug’s affiliation of a target by evaluation of the overall similarity (ensemble) rather than a single ligand judgment; and (3) integrating the standardized ensemble similarities (Z score) by Bayesian network and multi-variate kernel approach to make predictions. All these lead WES to predict drug direct targets with external and experimental test accuracies of 70% and 71%, respectively. This shows that the WES method provides a potential in silico model for drug repositioning and discovery. PMID:26155766

  13. Psychiatric comorbidity is associated with drug use and HIV risk in syringe exchange participants.

    PubMed

    Disney, Elizabeth; Kidorf, Michael; Kolodner, Ken; King, Van; Peirce, Jessica; Beilenson, Peter; Brooner, Robert K

    2006-08-01

    The present study evaluated the effects of psychiatric comorbidity on substance use disorder prevalence, HIV risk behavior, and other problem severity in male and female out-of-treatment injection drug users newly registered at a syringe exchange program. Participants (N = 338) were administered the Structured Clinical Interview for the DSM-IV, the Addiction Severity Index, and the Risk Assessment Battery, and classified into one of four diagnostic groups: (1) no antisocial personality disorder (APD) or Axis I psychiatric disorder (N = 162), (2) APD only (N = 74), (3) Axis I psychiatric disorder only (N = 55), or (4) APD plus Axis I psychiatric disorder (N = 47). Psychiatric comorbidity was associated with higher rates of substance use disorder and more HIV risk and other problem severity. In general, participants with both APD and an Axis I disorder exhibited the most problem severity. APD was uniquely associated with higher prevalence for each substance use disorder assessed in this study and with elevated HIV risk. These results support and extend studies conducted with opioid-dependent individuals recruited from treatment and community settings, and reinforce the need to develop interventions to encourage syringe exchange program participants to enroll in treatment.

  14. [Antipsychotics for schizophrenia: the paradigm of psychiatric drugs].

    PubMed

    Pol Yanguas, Emilio

    2015-03-01

    Antipsychotic drugs do not appear to reverse the causes of schizophrenia, and although they can relieve symptoms in the short to medium term, in the long term they may not be beneficial and could even be counterproductive. Their use should be limited to acute situations in which agitation and tension is disabling. The drugs have significant adverse effects, and given the refusal of a person to continue taking them, a harm reduction strategy to support and monitor the withdrawal may be preferable to coercion. There are alternatives to neuroleptics. Prescribers should be more vigilant and consider the assessments of users regarding the drugs' effects. Adherence to treatment guidelines is low, probably because the guidelines are based on clinical trials of deficient quality which consequently should be improved and extended over a greater period of time. The root of the problem is likely the tautology on the etiology and biological nature of what is known as schizophrenia, which in fact does not seem to be more than a commercial and ideological construct.

  15. Somatic Drugs for Psychiatric Diseases: Aspirin or Simvastatin for Depression?

    PubMed Central

    Rahola, Juan Gibert

    2012-01-01

    The evolution in the understanding of the neurobiology of most prevalent mental disorders such as major depressive disorder (MDD), bipolar disorder or schizophrenia has not gone hand in hand with the synthesis and clinical use of new drugs that would represent a therapeutic revolution such as that brought about by selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs) or atypical antipsychotics. Although scientists are still a long way from understanding its true aetiology, the neurobiological concept of depression has evolved from receptor regulation disorder, to a neurodegenerative disorder with a hippocampal volume decrease with the controversial reduction in neurotrophins such as BDNF, to current hypotheses that consider depression to be an inflammatory and neuroprogressive process. As regards antidepressants, although researchers are still far from knowing their true mechanism of action, they have gone from monoaminergic hypotheses, in which serotonin was the main protagonist, to emphasising the anti-inflammatory action of some of these drugs, or the participation of p11 protein in their mechanism of action. In the same way, according to the inflammatory hypothesis of depression, it has been proposed that some NSAIDS such as aspirin or drugs like simvastatin that have an anti-inflammatory action could be useful in some depressive patients. Despite the fact that there may be some data to support their clinical use, common sense and the evidence advise us to use already tested protocols and wait for the future to undertake new therapeutic strategies. PMID:23204984

  16. Human aspects of the management of drug discovery knowledge.

    PubMed

    Davenport, Thomas H; Peitsch, Manuel C

    2005-01-01

    A well-defined strategy for knowledge management is a key success factor of any knowledge-intensive industry. This applies particularly well to pharmaceutical drug discovery, which is one of the most knowledge-intensive processes. The subject has only rarely been studied in the context of pharmaceutical firms and we can only extrapolate a limited number of findings from other industries. Here, we look at five key human aspects of knowledge management (social networks and communities of practice, the roles of professional knowledge managers, the behaviors and processes of knowledge workers, management strategies and tactics and the role of the external work environment) and how they apply to the drug discovery process.: PMID:24981937

  17. The evolving role of chemical synthesis in antibacterial drug discovery.

    PubMed

    Wright, Peter M; Seiple, Ian B; Myers, Andrew G

    2014-08-18

    The discovery and implementation of antibiotics in the early twentieth century transformed human health and wellbeing. Chemical synthesis enabled the development of the first antibacterial substances, organoarsenicals and sulfa drugs, but these were soon outshone by a host of more powerful and vastly more complex antibiotics from nature: penicillin, streptomycin, tetracycline, and erythromycin, among others. These primary defences are now significantly less effective as an unavoidable consequence of rapid evolution of resistance within pathogenic bacteria, made worse by widespread misuse of antibiotics. For decades medicinal chemists replenished the arsenal of antibiotics by semisynthetic and to a lesser degree fully synthetic routes, but economic factors have led to a subsidence of this effort, which places society on the precipice of a disaster. We believe that the strategic application of modern chemical synthesis to antibacterial drug discovery must play a critical role if a crisis of global proportions is to be averted.

  18. Integrating virtual screening and combinatorial chemistry for accelerated drug discovery.

    PubMed

    López-Vallejo, Fabian; Caulfield, Thomas; Martínez-Mayorga, Karina; Giulianotti, Marc A; Nefzi, Adel; Houghten, Richard A; Medina-Franco, Jose L

    2011-07-01

    Virtual screening is increasingly being used in drug discovery programs with a growing number of successful applications. Experimental methodologies developed to speed up the drug discovery processes include high-throughput screening and combinatorial chemistry. The complementarities between computational and experimental screenings have been recognized and reviewed in the literature. Computational methods have also been used in the combinatorial chemistry field, in particular in library design. However, the integration of computational and combinatorial chemistry screenings has been attempted only recently. Combinatorial libraries (experimental or virtual) represent a notable source of chemically related compounds. Advances in combinatorial chemistry and deconvolution strategies, have enabled the rapid exploration of novel and dense regions in the chemical space. The present review is focused on the integration of virtual and experimental screening of combinatorial libraries. Applications of virtual screening to discover novel anticancer agents and our ongoing efforts towards the integration of virtual screening and combinatorial chemistry are also discussed.

  19. The Evolving Role of Chemical Synthesis in Antibacterial Drug Discovery

    PubMed Central

    Wright, Peter M.; Seiple, Ian B.; Myers, Andrew G.

    2015-01-01

    The discovery and implementation of antibiotics in the early twentieth century transformed human health and wellbeing. Chemical synthesis enabled the development of the first antibacterial substances, organoarsenicals and sulfa drugs, but these were soon outshone by a host of more powerful and vastly more complex antibiotics from nature: penicillin, streptomycin, tetracycline, and erythromycin, among others. These primary defences are now significantly less effective as an unavoidable consequence of rapid evolution of resistance within pathogenic bacteria, made worse by widespread misuse of antibiotics. For decades medicinal chemists replenished the arsenal of antibiotics by semisynthetic and to a lesser degree fully synthetic routes, but economic factors have led to a subsidence of this effort, which places society on the precipice of a disaster. We believe that the strategic application of modern chemical synthesis to antibacterial drug discovery must play a critical role if a crisis of global proportions is to be averted. PMID:24990531

  20. An ontology for description of drug discovery investigations.

    PubMed

    Qi, Da; King, Ross D; Hopkins, Andrew L; Bickerton, G Richard J; Soldatova, Larisa N

    2010-01-01

    The paper presents an ontology for the description of Drug Discovery Investigation (DDI).This has been developed through the use of a Robot Scientist "Eve", and in consultation with industry. DDI aims to define the principle entities and the relations in the research and development phase of the drug discovery pipeline. DDI is highly transferable and extendable due to its adherence to accepted standards, and compliance with existing ontology resources. This enables DDI to be integrated with such related ontologies as the Vaccine Ontology, the Advancing Clinico-Genomic Trials on Cancer Master Ontology, etc. DDI is available at http://purl.org/ddi/wikipedia or http://purl.org/ddi/home. PMID:20375446

  1. A Historical Overview of Natural Products in Drug Discovery

    PubMed Central

    Dias, Daniel A.; Urban, Sylvia; Roessner, Ute

    2012-01-01

    Historically, natural products have been used since ancient times and in folklore for the treatment of many diseases and illnesses. Classical natural product chemistry methodologies enabled a vast array of bioactive secondary metabolites from terrestrial and marine sources to be discovered. Many of these natural products have gone on to become current drug candidates. This brief review aims to highlight historically significant bioactive marine and terrestrial natural products, their use in folklore and dereplication techniques to rapidly facilitate their discovery. Furthermore a discussion of how natural product chemistry has resulted in the identification of many drug candidates; the application of advanced hyphenated spectroscopic techniques to aid in their discovery, the future of natural product chemistry and finally adopting metabolomic profiling and dereplication approaches for the comprehensive study of natural product extracts will be discussed. PMID:24957513

  2. High-throughput virtual screening for drug discovery in parallel.

    PubMed

    Toledo-Sherman, Leticia M; Chen, Deqi

    2002-05-01

    With the influx of targets generated by genomics and proteomics initiatives, a new drug discovery paradigm is emerging. Many companies are setting up target family platforms that tackle multiple targets and therapeutic areas simultaneously. Virtual screening (VS) techniques are a fundamental component of such platforms for in silico filtering of compound collections and prioritization of chemistry and screening efforts. At the heart of these, structure-based docking and scoring methods are especially effective in identifying bioactive molecules if the structure of a target is available. As structural genomics maps the structural space of the proteome, these techniques are expected to become commonplace. In light of this, an overview of the latest developments in VS methodology is given here. In particular, emphasis is placed on those techniques adaptable to high-throughput VS in parallel drug discovery platforms. The first examples of docking across multiple targets have already appeared in the literature and will be reviewed here.

  3. Pharmacophore-based discovery of ligands for drug transporters

    PubMed Central

    Chang, Cheng; Ekins, Sean; Bahadduri, Praveen; Swaan, Peter W.

    2006-01-01

    The ability to identify ligands for drug transporters is an important step in drug discovery and development. It can both improve accurate profiling of lead pharmacokinetic properties and assist in the discovery of new chemical entities targeting transporters. In silico approaches, especially pharmacophore-based database screening methods have great potential in improving the throughput of current transporter ligand identification assays, leading to a higher hit rate by focusing in vitro testing to the most promising hits. In this review, the potential of different in silico methods in transporter ligand identification studies are compared and summarized with an emphasis on pharmacophore modeling. Various implementations of pharmacophore model generation, database compilation and flexible screening algorithms are also introduced. Recent successful utilization of database searching with pharmacophores to identify novel ligands for the pharmaceutically significant transporters hPepT1, P-gp, BCRP, MRP1 and DAT are reviewed and challenges encountered with current approaches are discussed. PMID:17097188

  4. Ethnicity, self reported psychiatric illness, and intake of psychotropic drugs in five ethnic groups in Sweden

    PubMed Central

    Bayard-Burfield, L; Sundquist, J; Johansson, S

    2001-01-01

    STUDY OBJECTIVE—This study hypothesises that the presumed increased risk of self reported longstanding psychiatric illness and intake of psychotropic drugs among Iranian, Chilean, Turkish, and Kurdish adults, when these groups are compared with Polish adults, can be explained by living alone, poor acculturation, unemployment, and low sense of coherence.
DESIGN—Data from a national sample of immigrants/refugees, who were between the ages of 20-44 years old, upon their arrival in Sweden between 1980 and 1989. Unconditional logistic regression was used in the statistical modelling.
SETTING—Sweden.
PARTICIPANTS—1059 female and 921 male migrants from Iran, Chile, Turkey, Kurdistan and Poland and a random sample of 3001 Swedes, all between the ages of 27-60 years, were interviewed in 1996 by Statistics Sweden.
MAIN RESULTS—Compared with Swedes, all immigrants had an increased risk of self reported longstanding psychiatric illness and for intake of psychotropic drugs, with results for the Kurds being non-significant. Compared with Poles, Iranian and Chilean migrants had an increased risk of psychiatric illness, when seen in relation to a model in which adjustment was made for sex and age. The difference became non-significant for Chileans when marital status was taken into account. After including civil status and knowledge of the Swedish language, the increased risks for intake of psychotropic drugs for Chileans and Iranians disappeared. Living alone, poor knowledge of the Swedish language, non-employment, and low sense of coherence were strong risk factors for self reported longstanding psychiatric illness and for intake of psychotropic drugs. Iranian, Chilean, Turkish and Kurdish immigrants more frequently reported living in segregated neighbourhoods and having a greater desire to leave Sweden than their Polish counterparts.
CONCLUSION—Evidence substantiates a strong association between ethnicity and self reported longstanding psychiatric

  5. Microarrays meet the Voltaire challenge: Drug discovery on a chip?

    PubMed

    Jackson, David B; Stein, Martin A; Merino, Alejandro; Eils, Roland

    2006-01-01

    The co-emergence of microarray technologies with systems oriented approaches to discovery is testament to the technological and conceptual advancements of recent years. By providing a platform for massively parallelized reductionism, microarrays are enabling us to examine the functional features of diverse classes of bio-system components in a contextually meaningful manner. Yet, to provide economic impact, future development of these technologies demands intimate alignment with the goal of producing safer and more efficacious drugs.: PMID:24980402

  6. Fragment-based approaches and computer-aided drug discovery.

    PubMed

    Rognan, Didier

    2012-01-01

    Fragment-based design has significantly modified drug discovery strategies and paradigms in the last decade. Besides technological advances and novel therapeutic avenues, one of the most significant changes brought by this new discipline has occurred in the minds of drug designers. Fragment-based approaches have markedly impacted rational computer-aided design both in method development and in applications. The present review illustrates the importance of molecular fragments in many aspects of rational ligand design, and discusses how thinking in "fragment space" has boosted computational biology and chemistry. PMID:21710380

  7. Natural Products as a Foundation for Drug Discovery

    PubMed Central

    Beutler, John A.

    2009-01-01

    Natural products have contributed to the development of many drugs for diverse indications. While most U.S. pharmaceutical companies have reduced or eliminated their in-house natural product groups, new paradigms and new enterprises have evolved to carry on a role for natural products in the pharmaceutical industry. Many of the reasons for the decline in popularity of natural products are being addressed by the development of new techniques for screening and production. This overview aims to inform pharmacologists of current strategies and techniques that make natural products a viable strategic choice for inclusion in drug discovery programs. PMID:20161632

  8. Recent Advances in Drug Discovery from South African Marine Invertebrates.

    PubMed

    Davies-Coleman, Michael T; Veale, Clinton G L

    2015-10-01

    Recent developments in marine drug discovery from three South African marine invertebrates, the tube worm Cephalodiscus gilchristi, the ascidian Lissoclinum sp. and the sponge Topsentia pachastrelloides, are presented. Recent reports of the bioactivity and synthesis of the anti-cancer secondary metabolites cephalostatin and mandelalides (from C. gilchristi and Lissoclinum sp., respectively) and various analogues are presented. The threat of drug-resistant pathogens, e.g., methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA), is assuming greater global significance, and medicinal chemistry strategies to exploit the potent MRSA PK inhibition, first revealed by two marine secondary metabolites, cis-3,4-dihydrohamacanthin B and bromodeoxytopsentin from T. pachastrelloides, are compared. PMID:26473891

  9. Recent Advances in Drug Discovery from South African Marine Invertebrates

    PubMed Central

    Davies-Coleman, Michael T.; Veale, Clinton G. L.

    2015-01-01

    Recent developments in marine drug discovery from three South African marine invertebrates, the tube worm Cephalodiscus gilchristi, the ascidian Lissoclinum sp. and the sponge Topsentia pachastrelloides, are presented. Recent reports of the bioactivity and synthesis of the anti-cancer secondary metabolites cephalostatin and mandelalides (from C. gilchristi and Lissoclinum sp., respectively) and various analogues are presented. The threat of drug-resistant pathogens, e.g., methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA), is assuming greater global significance, and medicinal chemistry strategies to exploit the potent MRSA PK inhibition, first revealed by two marine secondary metabolites, cis-3,4-dihydrohamacanthin B and bromodeoxytopsentin from T. pachastrelloides, are compared. PMID:26473891

  10. Beyond the hundred dollar genome--drug discovery futures.

    PubMed

    Selwood, David L

    2013-01-01

    The advent of silicon chip based technologies for genome sequencing promises continuing exponential falls in the reagent costs of sequencing. When every patient has a full genome sequence as part of their medical records the science of drug discovery and drug design must adapt and improve to meet this challenge. This series covers computational, and experimental approaches for small molecules and biologics. From the virtual patient - a computational model of a complete human being, through in silico screening to RNA editing and antibody directed therapies.

  11. CACO-2 CELL LINES IN DRUG DISCOVERY- AN UPDATED PERSPECTIVE

    PubMed Central

    Kumar, Kalyan K.V; Karnati, Swathi; Reddy, Mamatha B; Chandramouli, R

    2010-01-01

    Cell lines are the invitro models used for the drug permeability studies in the preclinical and clinical phases of the drug discovery. Cell line models are simple and quick to use and avoids the usage of animal models for pharmacological and toxicological studies and hence cost effective, produce reliable and reproducible results for understanding and evaluating the permeability characteristics of the potential lead drug candidates. Different cell line models used in the drug permeability studies, their characteristics has been summarized emphasizing on CACO-2. By virtue of its merits, CACO-2 cell line development, transport experiments, automated assays, optimization of experimental conditions and mechanistic uses of CACO-2 cell lines dealt comprehensively in the following context. PMID:24825967

  12. Using Literature-Based Discovery to Explain Adverse Drug Effects.

    PubMed

    Hristovski, Dimitar; Kastrin, Andrej; Dinevski, Dejan; Burgun, Anita; Žiberna, Lovro; Rindflesch, Thomas C

    2016-08-01

    We report on our research in using literature-based discovery (LBD) to provide pharmacological and/or pharmacogenomic explanations for reported adverse drug effects. The goal of LBD is to generate novel and potentially useful hypotheses by analyzing the scientific literature and optionally some additional resources. Our assumption is that drugs have effects on some genes or proteins and that these genes or proteins are associated with the observed adverse effects. Therefore, by using LBD we try to find genes or proteins that link the drugs with the reported adverse effects. These genes or proteins can be used to provide insight into the processes causing the adverse effects. Initial results show that our method has the potential to assist in explaining reported adverse drug effects. PMID:27318993

  13. ACFIS: a web server for fragment-based drug discovery

    PubMed Central

    Hao, Ge-Fei; Jiang, Wen; Ye, Yuan-Nong; Wu, Feng-Xu; Zhu, Xiao-Lei; Guo, Feng-Biao; Yang, Guang-Fu

    2016-01-01

    In order to foster innovation and improve the effectiveness of drug discovery, there is a considerable interest in exploring unknown ‘chemical space’ to identify new bioactive compounds with novel and diverse scaffolds. Hence, fragment-based drug discovery (FBDD) was developed rapidly due to its advanced expansive search for ‘chemical space’, which can lead to a higher hit rate and ligand efficiency (LE). However, computational screening of fragments is always hampered by the promiscuous binding model. In this study, we developed a new web server Auto Core Fragment in silico Screening (ACFIS). It includes three computational modules, PARA_GEN, CORE_GEN and CAND_GEN. ACFIS can generate core fragment structure from the active molecule using fragment deconstruction analysis and perform in silico screening by growing fragments to the junction of core fragment structure. An integrated energy calculation rapidly identifies which fragments fit the binding site of a protein. We constructed a simple interface to enable users to view top-ranking molecules in 2D and the binding mode in 3D for further experimental exploration. This makes the ACFIS a highly valuable tool for drug discovery. The ACFIS web server is free and open to all users at http://chemyang.ccnu.edu.cn/ccb/server/ACFIS/. PMID:27150808

  14. Optical imaging for the new grammar of drug discovery.

    PubMed

    Krucker, Thomas; Sandanaraj, Britto S

    2011-11-28

    Optical technologies used in biomedical research have undergone tremendous development in the last decade and enabled important insight into biochemical, cellular and physiological phenomena at the microscopic and macroscopic level. Historically in drug discovery, to increase throughput in screening, or increase efficiency through automation of image acquisition and analysis in pathology, efforts in imaging were focused on the reengineering of established microscopy solutions. However, with the emergence of the new grammar for drug discovery, other requirements and expectations have created unique opportunities for optical imaging. The new grammar of drug discovery provides rules for translating the wealth of genomic and proteomic information into targeted medicines with a focus on complex interactions of proteins. This paradigm shift requires highly specific and quantitative imaging at the molecular level with tools that can be used in cellular assays, animals and finally translated into patients. The development of fluorescent targeted and activatable 'smart' probes, fluorescent proteins and new reporter gene systems as functional and dynamic markers of molecular events in vitro and in vivo is therefore playing a pivotal role. An enabling optical imaging platform will combine optical hardware refinement with a strong emphasis on creating and validating highly specific chemical and biological tools. PMID:22006912

  15. ACFIS: a web server for fragment-based drug discovery.

    PubMed

    Hao, Ge-Fei; Jiang, Wen; Ye, Yuan-Nong; Wu, Feng-Xu; Zhu, Xiao-Lei; Guo, Feng-Biao; Yang, Guang-Fu

    2016-07-01

    In order to foster innovation and improve the effectiveness of drug discovery, there is a considerable interest in exploring unknown 'chemical space' to identify new bioactive compounds with novel and diverse scaffolds. Hence, fragment-based drug discovery (FBDD) was developed rapidly due to its advanced expansive search for 'chemical space', which can lead to a higher hit rate and ligand efficiency (LE). However, computational screening of fragments is always hampered by the promiscuous binding model. In this study, we developed a new web server Auto Core Fragment in silico Screening (ACFIS). It includes three computational modules, PARA_GEN, CORE_GEN and CAND_GEN. ACFIS can generate core fragment structure from the active molecule using fragment deconstruction analysis and perform in silico screening by growing fragments to the junction of core fragment structure. An integrated energy calculation rapidly identifies which fragments fit the binding site of a protein. We constructed a simple interface to enable users to view top-ranking molecules in 2D and the binding mode in 3D for further experimental exploration. This makes the ACFIS a highly valuable tool for drug discovery. The ACFIS web server is free and open to all users at http://chemyang.ccnu.edu.cn/ccb/server/ACFIS/. PMID:27150808

  16. Psychiatric comorbidity measures as predictors of retention in drug abuse treatment programs.

    PubMed Central

    Broome, K M; Flynn, P M; Simpson, D D

    1999-01-01

    OBJECTIVE: To examine lifetime and current psychiatric comorbidity measures as predictors of drug abuse treatment retention, and to test the generalizability of results across treatment agencies in diverse settings and with varying practices. DATA SOURCES/STUDY SETTING: The national Drug Abuse Treatment Outcome Studies (DATOS), a longitudinal study of clients from 96 treatment agencies in 11 U.S. cities. STUDY DESIGN: The design is naturalistic and uses longitudinal analysis of treatment retention in long-term residential, outpatient drug-free, and outpatient methadone treatment modalities; client background (including psychiatric comorbidity) and program service provision are predictors. Clinical thresholds for adequate treatment retention were 90 days for long-term residential and outpatient drug-free, and 360 days for outpatient methadone. Psychiatric indicators included lifetime DSM-III-R diagnoses of depression/anxiety and antisocial personality, and dimensional measures of current symptoms for depression and hostility. DATA COLLECTION/EXTRACTION METHODS: Data include structured interviews with clients, a survey of treatment program administrators, and program discharge records. PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: Dimensional measures of current psychiatric symptoms emerged as better predictors than lifetime DSM-III-R diagnoses. In addition, the predictive association of hostility with retention varied significantly across treatment agencies, both in the long-term residential and outpatient drug-free modalities. Other notable findings were that on-site mental health services in long-term residential programs were associated with better retention for clients with symptoms of hostility. CONCLUSIONS: Assessment issues and stability of results across programs are important considerations for treatment research and practice. PMID:10445903

  17. Semantic Web Ontology and Data Integration: a Case Study in Aiding Psychiatric Drug Repurposing.

    PubMed

    Liang, Chen; Sun, Jingchun; Tao, Cui

    2015-01-01

    There remain significant difficulties selecting probable candidate drugs from existing databases. We describe an ontology-oriented approach to represent the nexus between genes, drugs, phenotypes, symptoms, and diseases from multiple information sources. We also report a case study in which we attempted to explore candidate drugs effective for bipolar disorder and epilepsy. We constructed an ontology incorporating knowledge between the two diseases and performed semantic reasoning tasks with the ontology. The results suggested 48 candidate drugs that hold promise for further breakthrough. The evaluation demonstrated the validity our approach. Our approach prioritizes the candidate drugs that have potential associations among genes, phenotypes and symptoms, and thus facilitates the data integration and drug repurposing in psychiatric disorders.

  18. Semantic Web Ontology and Data Integration: a Case Study in Aiding Psychiatric Drug Repurposing

    PubMed Central

    Liang, Chen; Sun, Jingchun; Tao, Cui

    2016-01-01

    Despite ongoing progress towards treating mental illness, there remain significant difficulties in selecting probable candidate drugs from the existing database. We describe an ontology — oriented approach aims to represent the nexus between genes, drugs, phenotypes, symptoms, and diseases from multiple information sources. Along with this approach, we report a case study in which we attempted to explore the candidate drugs that effective for both bipolar disorder and epilepsy. We constructed an ontology that incorporates the knowledge between the two diseases and performed semantic reasoning task on the ontology. The reasoning results suggested 48 candidate drugs that hold promise for a further breakthrough. The evaluation was performed and demonstrated the validity of the proposed ontology. The overarching goal of this research is to build a framework of ontology — based data integration underpinning psychiatric drug repurposing. This approach prioritizes the candidate drugs that have potential associations among genes, phenotypes and symptoms, and thus facilitates the data integration and drug repurposing in psychiatric disorders. PMID:27570661

  19. Off-label prescribing of psychotropic drugs in a Danish child and adolescent psychiatric outpatient clinic.

    PubMed

    Nielsen, Eva Skovslund; Hellfritzsch, Maja; Sørensen, Merete Juul; Rasmussen, Helle; Thomsen, Per Hove; Laursen, Torben

    2016-01-01

    This study aimed to describe the level of off-label treatment with psychotropic drugs at a child and adolescent psychiatric outpatient clinic in Denmark. We performed a cross-sectional study assessing records on patients treated with medicine at two outpatient clinics at the child and adolescent psychiatric ward, on 1 day in 2014. Prescriptions of drugs from ATC group N05-N06 were classified according to label status. Six hundred and fifteen drug prescriptions distributed on nine different drugs were prescribed to 503 children eligible for this study. Overall results showed that 170 of the 615 prescriptions were off-label, which corresponds to 27.6 %. Attention deficit hyperkinetic disorder (ADHD) drugs were prescribed 450 times (73.2 %) of which 11 prescriptions were off-label (2.4 %). Other psychotropic drugs comprised 165 (26.8 %) prescriptions and of these 159 (96.4 %) were off-label. With 106 prescriptions, melatonin was the most prescribed of these drugs; all prescriptions were off-label. The main reasons for classifying prescriptions as off-label were age and indication of treatment. This cross-sectional study reveals that medical treatment of children with other psychotropic drugs than ADHD drugs is usually off-label. ADHD drugs were, as the only drug group, primarily prescribed on-label. Although off-label prescription may be rational and even evidence based, the responsibility in case of, e.g. adverse drug reactions is a challenge, and clinical trials in children should be incited.

  20. PhenoPredict: A disease phenome-wide drug repositioning approach towards schizophrenia drug discovery.

    PubMed

    Xu, Rong; Wang, QuanQiu

    2015-08-01

    Schizophrenia (SCZ) is a common complex disorder with poorly understood mechanisms and no effective drug treatments. Despite the high prevalence and vast unmet medical need represented by the disease, many drug companies have moved away from the development of drugs for SCZ. Therefore, alternative strategies are needed for the discovery of truly innovative drug treatments for SCZ. Here, we present a disease phenome-driven computational drug repositioning approach for SCZ. We developed a novel drug repositioning system, PhenoPredict, by inferring drug treatments for SCZ from diseases that are phenotypically related to SCZ. The key to PhenoPredict is the availability of a comprehensive drug treatment knowledge base that we recently constructed. PhenoPredict retrieved all 18 FDA-approved SCZ drugs and ranked them highly (recall=1.0, and average ranking of 8.49%). When compared to PREDICT, one of the most comprehensive drug repositioning systems currently available, in novel predictions, PhenoPredict represented clear improvements over PREDICT in Precision-Recall (PR) curves, with a significant 98.8% improvement in the area under curve (AUC) of the PR curves. In addition, we discovered many drug candidates with mechanisms of action fundamentally different from traditional antipsychotics, some of which had published literature evidence indicating their treatment benefits in SCZ patients. In summary, although the fundamental pathophysiological mechanisms of SCZ remain unknown, integrated systems approaches to studying phenotypic connections among diseases may facilitate the discovery of innovative SCZ drugs.

  1. [Applications of the Fragment Molecular Orbital Method in Drug Discovery].

    PubMed

    Ishikawa, Takeshi

    2016-01-01

      Recently, ab initio quantum mechanical calculations have been applied to large molecules, including biomolecular systems. The fragment molecular orbital (FMO) method is one of the most efficient approaches for the quantum mechanical investigation of such molecules. In the FMO method, dividing a target molecule into small fragments reduces computational effort. The clear definition of inter-fragment interaction energy (IFIE) as an expression of total energy is another valuable feature of the FMO method because it provides the ability to analyze interactions in biomolecules. Thus, the FMO method is expected to be useful for drug discovery. This study demonstrates applications of the FMO method related to drug discovery. First, IFIE, according to FMO calculations, was used in the optimization of drug candidates for the development of anti-prion compounds. The second example involved interaction analysis of the human immunodeficiency virus type 1 (HIV-1) protease and a drug compound that used a novel analytical method for dispersion interaction, i.e., fragment interaction analysis based on LMP2 (FILM). PMID:26725679

  2. New Hepatitis C Virus Drug Discovery Strategies and Model Systems

    PubMed Central

    Hussain, Snawar; Barretto, Naina; Uprichard, Susan L

    2013-01-01

    Introduction Hepatitis C virus is a major cause of liver disease worldwide and the leading indication for liver transplantation in the United States. Current treatment options are expensive, not effective in all patients and are associated with serious side effects. While pre-clinical anti-HCV drug screening is still hampered by the lack of readily infectable small animal models, the development of cell culture HCV experimental model systems has driven a promising new wave of HCV antiviral drug discovery. Areas covered This review contains a concise overview of current HCV treatment options and limitations with a subsequent in-depth focus on the available experimental models and novel strategies that have and continue to enable important advances in HCV drug development. Expert opinion With a large cohort of chronically HCV infected patients progressively developing liver disease that puts them at risk for hepatocellular carcinoma and hepatic decompensation, there is an urgent need to develop effective therapeutics that are well-tolerated and effective in all patients and against all HCV genotypes. Significant advances in HCV experimental model development have expedited drug discovery; however, additional progress is needed. Importantly, the current trends and momentum in the field suggests that we will continue to overcome critical experimental challenges to reach this end goal. PMID:22861052

  3. Structural Genomics and Drug Discovery for Infectious Diseases

    SciTech Connect

    Anderson, W.F.

    2010-09-03

    The application of structural genomics methods and approaches to proteins from organisms causing infectious diseases is making available the three dimensional structures of many proteins that are potential drug targets and laying the groundwork for structure aided drug discovery efforts. There are a number of structural genomics projects with a focus on pathogens that have been initiated worldwide. The Center for Structural Genomics of Infectious Diseases (CSGID) was recently established to apply state-of-the-art high throughput structural biology technologies to the characterization of proteins from the National Institute for Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID) category A-C pathogens and organisms causing emerging, or re-emerging infectious diseases. The target selection process emphasizes potential biomedical benefits. Selected proteins include known drug targets and their homologs, essential enzymes, virulence factors and vaccine candidates. The Center also provides a structure determination service for the infectious disease scientific community. The ultimate goal is to generate a library of structures that are available to the scientific community and can serve as a starting point for further research and structure aided drug discovery for infectious diseases. To achieve this goal, the CSGID will determine protein crystal structures of 400 proteins and protein-ligand complexes using proven, rapid, highly integrated, and cost-effective methods for such determination, primarily by X-ray crystallography. High throughput crystallographic structure determination is greatly aided by frequent, convenient access to high-performance beamlines at third-generation synchrotron X-ray sources.

  4. The failure of the antidepressant drug discovery process is systemic.

    PubMed

    Hendrie, Colin; Pickles, Alasdair; Stanford, S Clare; Robinson, Emma

    2013-05-01

    Current antidepressants are crude compared with the ideal and patents on most have expired. There are therefore strong clinical and commercial pressures for new drugs to replace them. The prospects for this are, however, now markedly reduced as several major pharmaceutical companies have abandoned work in this area whilst many others have sharply decreased their research investment. These changes and the lack of progress over such a long period are indicative of a catastrophic systems failure which, it is argued, has been caused in large part by a logical flaw at the animal modelling stage. This tautology has served to lock the current antidepressant drug discovery process into an iterative loop capable only of producing further variations of that which has gone before. Drugs produced by this approach have proved to be only poorly effective in the context of the clinically depressed population as a whole. Hence, the inevitable failure of the current antidepressant drug discovery process has left little behind that can be salvaged. Therefore, it is suggested that this be urgently reformulated on more rational grounds using more appropriate species in new animal models based upon a thorough understanding of the behavioural expressions of depression in the clinic.

  5. Designer drugs in psychiatric practice - a review of the literature and the recent situation in Hungary.

    PubMed

    Szily, Erika; Bitter, István

    2013-12-01

    In recent years service providers experienced a new phenomenon in the drug markets of Hungary: the dramatically increasing sale and use of designer drugs. In psychiatric practice, the first sign of this new trend was the increasing number of hospitalized patients with acute psychosis using a new type of designer drug: MDPV (3,4-Methylenedioxypyrovalerone). The range of designer drugs available is wider than ever before. They are inexpensive and many times are known to be legal, undetectable, safe or natural to the consumers. In fact, the compounds and their biological effects are many times unknown to the consumers and to the physicians as well, while a recently emerging body of data suggests that the somatic and mental consequences of their consumption are frequent, severe, and sometimes even life-threatening. The aims of this paper are to summarize the most important general information about some widely used designer drugs (synthetic cathinones and cannabinoids); to draw attention to present and upcoming trends of substance abuse patterns; and to highlight the importance and consequences of these trends in every day clinical practice, considering the most important and challenging somatic and psychiatric consequences of designer drug abuse.

  6. Proteomics in the discovery of new therapeutic targets for psychiatric disease.

    PubMed

    Voshol, Hans; Glucksman, Marc J; van Oostrum, Jan

    2003-08-01

    In terms of impact on and cost to society psychiatric disorders are among the most important health problems of today. Current estimates from the US suggest that the collective cost of psychiatric diseases could amount to one-third of the total health care budget with a cumulative lifetime prevalence of 30%. While undoubtedly improvements have been made in the diagnosis and treatment of at least the symptoms of mental illness, there has been frustratingly little progress in elucidating the molecular mechanisms. However, a fundamentally different approach to study molecular mechanisms of psychiatric diseases is emerging as a result of technological advances in expression profiling methods. This comprises the investigation of the expressed disease 'phenotypes', developing from the differential gene and protein expression in the central nervous system as a result of the complex interaction between genetic predisposition and environmental modulation. This paper will focus on proteomics, expression profiling at the protein level, reviewing some of the available tools and their application in the molecular analysis of psychiatric disease.

  7. Simulating the drug discovery pipeline: a Monte Carlo approach

    PubMed Central

    2012-01-01

    Background The early drug discovery phase in pharmaceutical research and development marks the beginning of a long, complex and costly process of bringing a new molecular entity to market. As such, it plays a critical role in helping to maintain a robust downstream clinical development pipeline. Despite its importance, however, to our knowledge there are no published in silico models to simulate the progression of discrete virtual projects through a discovery milestone system. Results Multiple variables were tested and their impact on productivity metrics examined. Simulations predict that there is an optimum number of scientists for a given drug discovery portfolio, beyond which output in the form of preclinical candidates per year will remain flat. The model further predicts that the frequency of compounds to successfully pass the candidate selection milestone as a function of time will be irregular, with projects entering preclinical development in clusters marked by periods of low apparent productivity. Conclusions The model may be useful as a tool to facilitate analysis of historical growth and achievement over time, help gauge current working group progress against future performance expectations, and provide the basis for dialogue regarding working group best practices and resource deployment strategies. PMID:23186040

  8. Interfacial inhibition of macromolecular interactions: nature's paradigm for drug discovery.

    PubMed

    Pommier, Yves; Cherfils, Jacqueline

    2005-03-01

    One of nature's strategies for interfering with molecular interactions is to trap macromolecules in transition states with their partners in dead-end complexes that are unable to complete their biological function. This type of inhibition, which we refer to as "interfacial inhibition", is illustrated by two natural inhibitors, brefeldin A (BFA) and camptothecin (CPT), whose modes of action have been elucidated fully in structural studies. Interfacial inhibition occurs at the protein-protein interface in the case of BFA and at the protein-DNA interface in the case of CPT. In both systems, the drugs take advantage of transient structural and energetic conditions created by the macromolecular complex, which give rise to "hot-spots" for drug binding. In addition to these examples, several natural compounds such as forskolin, tubulin inhibitors and immunophilins target protein interfaces. We propose that interfacial inhibition is a paradigm for the discovery of drugs that interfere with macromolecular complexes.

  9. Machine-Learning Techniques Applied to Antibacterial Drug Discovery

    PubMed Central

    Durrant, Jacob D.; Amaro, Rommie E.

    2014-01-01

    The emergence of drug-resistant bacteria threatens to catapult humanity back to the pre-antibiotic era. Even now, multi-drug-resistant bacterial infections annually result in millions of hospital days, billions in healthcare costs, and, most importantly, tens of thousands of lives lost. As many pharmaceutical companies have abandoned antibiotic development in search of more lucrative therapeutics, academic researchers are uniquely positioned to fill the resulting vacuum. Traditional high-throughput screens and lead-optimization efforts are expensive and labor intensive. Computer-aided drug discovery techniques, which are cheaper and faster, can accelerate the identification of novel antibiotics in an academic setting, leading to improved hit rates and faster transitions to pre-clinical and clinical testing. The current review describes two machine-learning techniques, neural networks and decision trees, that have been used to identify experimentally validated antibiotics. We conclude by describing the future directions of this exciting field. PMID:25521642

  10. Fragment-based drug discovery and molecular docking in drug design.

    PubMed

    Wang, Tao; Wu, Mian-Bin; Chen, Zheng-Jie; Chen, Hua; Lin, Jian-Ping; Yang, Li-Rong

    2015-01-01

    Fragment-based drug discovery (FBDD) has caused a revolution in the process of drug discovery and design, with many FBDD leads being developed into clinical trials or approved in the past few years. Compared with traditional high-throughput screening, it displays obvious advantages such as efficiently covering chemical space, achieving higher hit rates, and so forth. In this review, we focus on the most recent developments of FBDD for improving drug discovery, illustrating the process and the importance of FBDD. In particular, the computational strategies applied in the process of FBDD and molecular-docking programs are highlighted elaborately. In most cases, docking is used for predicting the ligand-receptor interaction modes and hit identification by structurebased virtual screening. The successful cases of typical significance and the hits identified most recently are discussed. PMID:25420726

  11. Use of "big data" in drug discovery and clinical trials.

    PubMed

    Taglang, Guillaume; Jackson, David B

    2016-04-01

    Oncology is undergoing a data-driven metamorphosis. Armed with new and ever more efficient molecular and information technologies, we have entered an era where data is helping us spearhead the fight against cancer. This technology driven data explosion, often referred to as "big data", is not only expediting biomedical discovery, but it is also rapidly transforming the practice of oncology into an information science. This evolution is critical, as results to-date have revealed the immense complexity and genetic heterogeneity of patients and their tumors, a sobering reminder of the challenge facing every patient and their oncologist. This can only be addressed through development of clinico-molecular data analytics that provide a deeper understanding of the mechanisms controlling the biological and clinical response to available therapeutic options. Beyond the exciting implications for improved patient care, such advancements in predictive and evidence-based analytics stand to profoundly affect the processes of cancer drug discovery and associated clinical trials.

  12. Effects of Music Therapy on Drug Therapy of Adult Psychiatric Outpatients: A Pilot Randomized Controlled Study

    PubMed Central

    Degli Stefani, Mario; Biasutti, Michele

    2016-01-01

    Objective: Framed in the patients’ engagement perspective, the current study aims to determine the effects of group music therapy in addition to drug care in comparison with drug care in addition to other non-expressive group activities in the treatment of psychiatric outpatients. Method: Participants (n = 27) with ICD-10 diagnoses of F20 (schizophrenia), F25 (schizoaffective disorders), F31 (bipolar affective disorder), F32 (depressive episode), and F60 (specific personality disorders) were randomized to receive group music therapy plus standard care (48 weekly sessions of 2 h) or standard care only. The clinical measures included dosages of neuroleptics, benzodiazepines, mood stabilizers, and antidepressants. Results: The participants who received group music therapy demonstrated greater improvement in drug dosage with respect to neuroleptics than those who did not receive group music therapy. Antidepressants had an increment for both groups that was significant only for the control group. Benzodiazepines and mood stabilizers did not show any significant change in either group. Conclusion: Group music therapy combined with standard drug care was effective for controlling neuroleptic drug dosages in adult psychiatric outpatients who received group music therapy. We discussed the likely applications of group music therapy in psychiatry and the possible contribution of music therapy in improving the psychopathological condition of adult outpatients. In addition, the implications for the patient-centered perspective were also discussed. PMID:27774073

  13. Functional brain connectivity phenotypes for schizophrenia drug discovery.

    PubMed

    Dawson, Neil; Morris, Brian J; Pratt, Judith A

    2015-02-01

    While our knowledge of the pathophysiology of schizophrenia has increased dramatically, this has not translated into the development of new and improved drugs to treat this disorder. Human brain imaging and electrophysiological studies have provided dramatic new insight into the mechanisms of brain dysfunction in the disease, with a swathe of recent studies highlighting the differences in functional brain network and neural system connectivity present in the disorder. Only recently has the value of applying these approaches in preclinical rodent models relevant to the disorder started to be recognised. Here we highlight recent findings of altered functional brain connectivity in preclinical rodent models and consider their relevance to those alterations seen in the brains of schizophrenia patients. Furthermore, we highlight the potential translational value of using the paradigm of functional brain connectivity phenotypes in the context of preclinical schizophrenia drug discovery, as a means both to understand the mechanisms of brain dysfunction in the disorder and to reduce the current high attrition rate in schizophrenia drug discovery.

  14. Stimulated Raman scattering microscopy: an emerging tool for drug discovery.

    PubMed

    Tipping, W J; Lee, M; Serrels, A; Brunton, V G; Hulme, A N

    2016-04-21

    Optical microscopy techniques have emerged as a cornerstone of biomedical research, capable of probing the cellular functions of a vast range of substrates, whilst being minimally invasive to the cells or tissues of interest. Incorporating biological imaging into the early stages of the drug discovery process can provide invaluable information about drug activity within complex disease models. Spontaneous Raman spectroscopy has been widely used as a platform for the study of cells and their components based on chemical composition; but slow acquisition rates, poor resolution and a lack of sensitivity have hampered further development. A new generation of stimulated Raman techniques is emerging which allows the imaging of cells, tissues and organisms at faster acquisition speeds, and with greater resolution and sensitivity than previously possible. This review focuses on the development of stimulated Raman scattering (SRS), and covers the use of bioorthogonal tags to enhance sample detection, and recent applications of both spontaneous Raman and SRS as novel imaging platforms to facilitate the drug discovery process. PMID:26839248

  15. Chemical informatics and the drug discovery knowledge pyramid.

    PubMed

    Lushington, Gerald H; Dong, Yinghua; Theertham, Bhargav

    2013-12-01

    The magnitude of the challenges in preclinical drug discovery is evident in the large amount of capital invested in such efforts in pursuit of a small static number of eventually successful marketable therapeutics. An explosion in the availability of potentially drug-like compounds and chemical biology data on these molecules can provide us with the means to improve the eventual success rates for compounds being considered at the preclinical level, but only if the community is able to access available information in an efficient and meaningful way. Thus, chemical database resources are critical to any serious drug discovery effort. This paper explores the basic principles underlying the development and implementation of chemical databases, and examines key issues of how molecular information may be encoded within these databases so as to enhance the likelihood that users will be able to extract meaningful information from data queries. In addition to a broad survey of conventional data representation and query strategies, key enabling technologies such as new context-sensitive chemical similarity measures and chemical cartridges are examined, with recommendations on how such resources may be integrated into a practical database environment.

  16. Advanced Cell Culture Techniques for Cancer Drug Discovery

    PubMed Central

    Lovitt, Carrie J.; Shelper, Todd B.; Avery, Vicky M.

    2014-01-01

    Human cancer cell lines are an integral part of drug discovery practices. However, modeling the complexity of cancer utilizing these cell lines on standard plastic substrata, does not accurately represent the tumor microenvironment. Research into developing advanced tumor cell culture models in a three-dimensional (3D) architecture that more prescisely characterizes the disease state have been undertaken by a number of laboratories around the world. These 3D cell culture models are particularly beneficial for investigating mechanistic processes and drug resistance in tumor cells. In addition, a range of molecular mechanisms deconstructed by studying cancer cells in 3D models suggest that tumor cells cultured in two-dimensional monolayer conditions do not respond to cancer therapeutics/compounds in a similar manner. Recent studies have demonstrated the potential of utilizing 3D cell culture models in drug discovery programs; however, it is evident that further research is required for the development of more complex models that incorporate the majority of the cellular and physical properties of a tumor. PMID:24887773

  17. Pharmacokinetic properties and in silico ADME modeling in drug discovery.

    PubMed

    Honório, Kathia M; Moda, Tiago L; Andricopulo, Adriano D

    2013-03-01

    The discovery and development of a new drug are time-consuming, difficult and expensive. This complex process has evolved from classical methods into an integration of modern technologies and innovative strategies addressed to the design of new chemical entities to treat a variety of diseases. The development of new drug candidates is often limited by initial compounds lacking reasonable chemical and biological properties for further lead optimization. Huge libraries of compounds are frequently selected for biological screening using a variety of techniques and standard models to assess potency, affinity and selectivity. In this context, it is very important to study the pharmacokinetic profile of the compounds under investigation. Recent advances have been made in the collection of data and the development of models to assess and predict pharmacokinetic properties (ADME--absorption, distribution, metabolism and excretion) of bioactive compounds in the early stages of drug discovery projects. This paper provides a brief perspective on the evolution of in silico ADME tools, addressing challenges, limitations, and opportunities in medicinal chemistry.

  18. Computer-Aided Drug Discovery and Design Targeting Ion Channels.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Qiansen; Gao, Zhaobing; Yang, Huaiyu

    2016-01-01

    Ion channels are widely expressed in living cells and play critical roles in various cellular biological functions. Dysfunctional ion channels can cause a variety of diseases, making ion channels attractive targets for drug discovery. Computational approaches, such as molecular docking and molecular dynamic simulations, provide economic and efficient tools for finding modulators of ion channels and for elucidating the action mechanisms of small molecules. In this review, we focus primarily on four types of ion channels (voltage-gated, ligand-gated, acid-sensing, and virus matrix 2 ion channels). The current advancements in computer-aided drug discovery and design targeting ion channels are summarized. First, ligand-based studies for drug design are briefly outlined. Then, we focus on the structurebased studies targeting pore domains, endogenous binding sites and allosteric sites of ion channels. Moreover, we also review the contribution of computational methods to the field of ligand binding and unbinding pathways of ion channels. Finally, we propose future developments for the field. PMID:26975507

  19. Green Tea Polyphenols in drug discovery - a success or failure?

    PubMed Central

    Smith, Thomas J.

    2011-01-01

    Green tea is made from unfermented dried leaves from Camellia sinensis and has been consumed by humans for thousands of years. For nearly as long, it has been used as a folk remedy for a wide array of diseases. More recently, a large number of in-vitro and in-vivo scientific studies have supported this ancient contention that the polyphenols from green tea can provide a number of health benefits. Since these compounds are clearly safe for human consumption and ubiquitous in the food supply, they are highly attractive as lead compounds for drug discovery programs. However, as drugs, they are far from optimum. They are relatively unstable, poorly absorbed, and readily undergo a number of metabolic transformations by intestinal microbiota and human enzymes. Further, since these compounds target a wide array of biological systems, in-vivo testing is rather difficult since effects on alternative pathways need to be carefully eliminated. The purpose of this review is to discuss some of the challenges and benefits of pursuing this family of compounds for drug discovery. PMID:21731575

  20. Chemical Informatics and the Drug Discovery Knowledge Pyramid

    PubMed Central

    Lushington, Gerald H.; Dong, Yinghua; Theertham, Bhargav

    2012-01-01

    The magnitude of the challenges in preclinical drug discovery is evident in the large amount of capital invested in such efforts in pursuit of a small static number of eventually successful marketable therapeutics. An explosion in the availability of potentially drug-like compounds and chemical biology data on these molecules can provide us with the means to improve the eventual success rates for compounds being considered at the preclinical level, but only if the community is able to access available information in an efficient and meaningful way. Thus, chemical database resources are critical to any serious drug discovery effort. This paper explores the basic principles underlying the development and implementation of chemical databases, and examines key issues of how molecular information may be encoded within these databases so as to enhance the likelihood that users will be able to extract meaningful information from data queries. In addition to a broad survey of conventional data representation and query strategies, key enabling technologies such as new context-sensitive chemical similarity measures and chemical cartridges are examined, with recommendations on how such resources may be integrated into a practical database environment. PMID:23782037

  1. NOVEL AVENUES OF DRUG DISCOVERY AND BIOMARKERS FOR DIABETES MELLITUS

    PubMed Central

    Maiese, Kenneth; Chong, Zhao Zhong; Shang, Yan Chen; Hou, Jinling

    2011-01-01

    Globally, developed nations spend a significant amount of their resources on healthcare initiatives that poorly translate into increased population life expectancy. As an example, the United States devotes sixteen percent of its gross domestic product to healthcare, the highest level in the world, but falls behind other nations that enjoy greater individual life expectancy. These observations point to the need for pioneering avenues of drug discovery to increase lifespan with controlled costs. In particular, innovative drug development for metabolic disorders such as diabetes mellitus (DM) becomes increasingly critical given that the number of diabetic individuals will increase exponentially over the next twenty years. Here we discuss the elucidation and targeting of novel cellular pathways that are intimately tied to oxidative stress in DM for new treatment strategies. Pathways that involve wingless, NAD+ precursors, and cytokines govern complex biological pathways that determine both cell survival and longevity during DM and its complications. Furthermore, the role of these entities as biomarkers for disease can further enhance their utility irrespective of their treatment potential. Greater understanding of the intricacies of these unique cellular mechanisms will shape future drug discovery for DM to provide focused clinical care with limited or absent long-term complications. PMID:20220043

  2. Current perspectives in drug discovery against tuberculosis from natural products.

    PubMed

    Nguta, Joseph Mwanzia; Appiah-Opong, Regina; Nyarko, Alexander K; Yeboah-Manu, Dorothy; Addo, Phyllis G A

    2015-09-01

    Currently, one third of the world's population is latently infected with Mycobacterium tuberculosis (MTB), while 8.9-9.9 million new and relapse cases of tuberculosis (TB) are reported yearly. The renewed research interests in natural products in the hope of discovering new and novel antitubercular leads have been driven partly by the increased incidence of multidrug-resistant strains of MTB and the adverse effects associated with the first- and second-line antitubercular drugs. Natural products have been, and will continue to be a rich source of new drugs against many diseases. The depth and breadth of therapeutic agents that have their origins in the secondary metabolites produced by living organisms cannot be compared with any other source of therapeutic agents. Discovery of new chemical molecules against active and latent TB from natural products requires an interdisciplinary approach, which is a major challenge facing scientists in this field. In order to overcome this challenge, cutting edge techniques in mycobacteriology and innovative natural product chemistry tools need to be developed and used in tandem. The present review provides a cross-linkage to the most recent literature in both fields and their potential to impact the early phase of drug discovery against TB if seamlessly combined. PMID:27649863

  3. Stimulated Raman scattering microscopy: an emerging tool for drug discovery

    PubMed Central

    Tipping, W. J.; Lee, M.; Serrels, A.; Brunton, V. G.

    2016-01-01

    Optical microscopy techniques have emerged as a cornerstone of biomedical research, capable of probing the cellular functions of a vast range of substrates, whilst being minimally invasive to the cells or tissues of interest. Incorporating biological imaging into the early stages of the drug discovery process can provide invaluable information about drug activity within complex disease models. Spontaneous Raman spectroscopy has been widely used as a platform for the study of cells and their components based on chemical composition; but slow acquisition rates, poor resolution and a lack of sensitivity have hampered further development. A new generation of stimulated Raman techniques is emerging which allows the imaging of cells, tissues and organisms at faster acquisition speeds, and with greater resolution and sensitivity than previously possible. This review focuses on the development of stimulated Raman scattering (SRS), and covers the use of bioorthogonal tags to enhance sample detection, and recent applications of both spontaneous Raman and SRS as novel imaging platforms to facilitate the drug discovery process. PMID:26839248

  4. Genetics of rheumatoid arthritis contributes to biology and drug discovery

    PubMed Central

    Okada, Yukinori; Wu, Di; Trynka, Gosia; Raj, Towfique; Terao, Chikashi; Ikari, Katsunori; Kochi, Yuta; Ohmura, Koichiro; Suzuki, Akari; Yoshida, Shinji; Graham, Robert R.; Manoharan, Arun; Ortmann, Ward; Bhangale, Tushar; Denny, Joshua C.; Carroll, Robert J.; Eyler, Anne E.; Greenberg, Jeffrey D.; Kremer, Joel M.; Pappas, Dimitrios A.; Jiang, Lei; Yin, Jian; Ye, Lingying; Su, Ding-Feng; Yang, Jian; Xie, Gang; Keystone, Ed; Westra, Harm-Jan; Esko, Tõnu; Metspalu, Andres; Zhou, Xuezhong; Gupta, Namrata; Mirel, Daniel; Stahl, Eli A.; Diogo, Dorothée; Cui, Jing; Liao, Katherine; Guo, Michael H.; Myouzen, Keiko; Kawaguchi, Takahisa; Coenen, Marieke J.H.; van Riel, Piet L.C.M.; van de Laar, Mart A.F.J.; Guchelaar, Henk-Jan; Huizinga, Tom W.J.; Dieudé, Philippe; Mariette, Xavier; Bridges, S. Louis; Zhernakova, Alexandra; Toes, Rene E.M.; Tak, Paul P.; Miceli-Richard, Corinne; Bang, So-Young; Lee, Hye-Soon; Martin, Javier; Gonzalez-Gay, Miguel A.; Rodriguez-Rodriguez, Luis; Rantapää-Dahlqvist, Solbritt; Ärlestig, Lisbeth; Choi, Hyon K.; Kamatani, Yoichiro; Galan, Pilar; Lathrop, Mark; Eyre, Steve; Bowes, John; Barton, Anne; de Vries, Niek; Moreland, Larry W.; Criswell, Lindsey A.; Karlson, Elizabeth W.; Taniguchi, Atsuo; Yamada, Ryo; Kubo, Michiaki; Liu, Jun S.; Bae, Sang-Cheol; Worthington, Jane; Padyukov, Leonid; Klareskog, Lars; Gregersen, Peter K.; Raychaudhuri, Soumya; Stranger, Barbara E.; De Jager, Philip L.; Franke, Lude; Visscher, Peter M.; Brown, Matthew A.; Yamanaka, Hisashi; Mimori, Tsuneyo; Takahashi, Atsushi; Xu, Huji; Behrens, Timothy W.; Siminovitch, Katherine A.; Momohara, Shigeki; Matsuda, Fumihiko; Yamamoto, Kazuhiko; Plenge, Robert M.

    2013-01-01

    A major challenge in human genetics is to devise a systematic strategy to integrate disease-associated variants with diverse genomic and biological datasets to provide insight into disease pathogenesis and guide drug discovery for complex traits such as rheumatoid arthritis (RA)1. Here, we performed a genome-wide association study (GWAS) meta-analysis in a total of >100,000 subjects of European and Asian ancestries (29,880 RA cases and 73,758 controls), by evaluating ~10 million single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs). We discovered 42 novel RA risk loci at a genome-wide level of significance, bringing the total to 1012–4. We devised an in-silico pipeline using established bioinformatics methods based on functional annotation5, cis-acting expression quantitative trait loci (cis-eQTL)6, and pathway analyses7–9 – as well as novel methods based on genetic overlap with human primary immunodeficiency (PID), hematological cancer somatic mutations and knock-out mouse phenotypes – to identify 98 biological candidate genes at these 101 risk loci. We demonstrate that these genes are the targets of approved therapies for RA, and further suggest that drugs approved for other indications may be repurposed for the treatment of RA. Together, this comprehensive genetic study sheds light on fundamental genes, pathways and cell types that contribute to RA pathogenesis, and provides empirical evidence that the genetics of RA can provide important information for drug discovery. PMID:24390342

  5. Genetics of rheumatoid arthritis contributes to biology and drug discovery.

    PubMed

    Okada, Yukinori; Wu, Di; Trynka, Gosia; Raj, Towfique; Terao, Chikashi; Ikari, Katsunori; Kochi, Yuta; Ohmura, Koichiro; Suzuki, Akari; Yoshida, Shinji; Graham, Robert R; Manoharan, Arun; Ortmann, Ward; Bhangale, Tushar; Denny, Joshua C; Carroll, Robert J; Eyler, Anne E; Greenberg, Jeffrey D; Kremer, Joel M; Pappas, Dimitrios A; Jiang, Lei; Yin, Jian; Ye, Lingying; Su, Ding-Feng; Yang, Jian; Xie, Gang; Keystone, Ed; Westra, Harm-Jan; Esko, Tõnu; Metspalu, Andres; Zhou, Xuezhong; Gupta, Namrata; Mirel, Daniel; Stahl, Eli A; Diogo, Dorothée; Cui, Jing; Liao, Katherine; Guo, Michael H; Myouzen, Keiko; Kawaguchi, Takahisa; Coenen, Marieke J H; van Riel, Piet L C M; van de Laar, Mart A F J; Guchelaar, Henk-Jan; Huizinga, Tom W J; Dieudé, Philippe; Mariette, Xavier; Bridges, S Louis; Zhernakova, Alexandra; Toes, Rene E M; Tak, Paul P; Miceli-Richard, Corinne; Bang, So-Young; Lee, Hye-Soon; Martin, Javier; Gonzalez-Gay, Miguel A; Rodriguez-Rodriguez, Luis; Rantapää-Dahlqvist, Solbritt; Arlestig, Lisbeth; Choi, Hyon K; Kamatani, Yoichiro; Galan, Pilar; Lathrop, Mark; Eyre, Steve; Bowes, John; Barton, Anne; de Vries, Niek; Moreland, Larry W; Criswell, Lindsey A; Karlson, Elizabeth W; Taniguchi, Atsuo; Yamada, Ryo; Kubo, Michiaki; Liu, Jun S; Bae, Sang-Cheol; Worthington, Jane; Padyukov, Leonid; Klareskog, Lars; Gregersen, Peter K; Raychaudhuri, Soumya; Stranger, Barbara E; De Jager, Philip L; Franke, Lude; Visscher, Peter M; Brown, Matthew A; Yamanaka, Hisashi; Mimori, Tsuneyo; Takahashi, Atsushi; Xu, Huji; Behrens, Timothy W; Siminovitch, Katherine A; Momohara, Shigeki; Matsuda, Fumihiko; Yamamoto, Kazuhiko; Plenge, Robert M

    2014-02-20

    A major challenge in human genetics is to devise a systematic strategy to integrate disease-associated variants with diverse genomic and biological data sets to provide insight into disease pathogenesis and guide drug discovery for complex traits such as rheumatoid arthritis (RA). Here we performed a genome-wide association study meta-analysis in a total of >100,000 subjects of European and Asian ancestries (29,880 RA cases and 73,758 controls), by evaluating ∼10 million single-nucleotide polymorphisms. We discovered 42 novel RA risk loci at a genome-wide level of significance, bringing the total to 101 (refs 2 - 4). We devised an in silico pipeline using established bioinformatics methods based on functional annotation, cis-acting expression quantitative trait loci and pathway analyses--as well as novel methods based on genetic overlap with human primary immunodeficiency, haematological cancer somatic mutations and knockout mouse phenotypes--to identify 98 biological candidate genes at these 101 risk loci. We demonstrate that these genes are the targets of approved therapies for RA, and further suggest that drugs approved for other indications may be repurposed for the treatment of RA. Together, this comprehensive genetic study sheds light on fundamental genes, pathways and cell types that contribute to RA pathogenesis, and provides empirical evidence that the genetics of RA can provide important information for drug discovery. PMID:24390342

  6. The age of anxiety: role of animal models of anxiolytic action in drug discovery

    PubMed Central

    Cryan, John F; Sweeney, Fabian F

    2011-01-01

    Anxiety disorders are common, serious and a growing health problem worldwide. However, the causative factors, aetiology and underlying mechanisms of anxiety disorders, as for most psychiatric disorders, remain relatively poorly understood. Animal models are an important aid in giving insight into the aetiology, neurobiology and, ultimately, the therapy of human anxiety disorders. The approach, however, is challenged with a number of complexities. In particular, the heterogeneous nature of anxiety disorders in humans coupled with the associated multifaceted and descriptive diagnostic criteria, creates challenges in both animal modelling and in clinical research. In this paper, we describe some of the more widely used approaches for assessing the anxiolytic activity of known and potential therapeutic agents. These include ethological, conflict-based, hyponeophagia, vocalization-based, physiological and cognitive-based paradigms. Developments in the characterization of translational models are also summarized, as are the challenges facing researchers in their drug discovery efforts in developing new anxiolytic drugs, not least the ever-shifting clinical conceptualization of anxiety disorders. In conclusion, to date, although animal models of anxiety have relatively good validity, anxiolytic drugs with novel mechanisms have been slow to emerge. It is clear that a better alignment of the interactions between basic and clinical scientists is needed if this is to change. LINKED ARTICLES This article is part of a themed issue on Translational Neuropharmacology. To view the other articles in this issue visit http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/bph.2011.164.issue-4 PMID:21545412

  7. The case for open-source software in drug discovery.

    PubMed

    DeLano, Warren L

    2005-02-01

    Widespread adoption of open-source software for network infrastructure, web servers, code development, and operating systems leads one to ask how far it can go. Will "open source" spread broadly, or will it be restricted to niches frequented by hopeful hobbyists and midnight hackers? Here we identify reasons for the success of open-source software and predict how consumers in drug discovery will benefit from new open-source products that address their needs with increased flexibility and in ways complementary to proprietary options.

  8. Regenerative medicine and stem cell based drug discovery.

    PubMed

    Sakurada, Kazuhiro; McDonald, Fiona M; Shimada, Fumiki

    2008-01-01

    As William Shakespeare beautifully described, increasing age often causes loss of tissue and organ function. The increase in average life expectancy in many countries is generating an aging society and an increase in age-related health problems. Regenerative medicine is expected to be a powerful actor in this drama, and stem cell technology may hold the key to the development of innovative treatments for acute and chronic degenerative conditions. This Review surveys the present situation and some future prospects for regenerative medicine and stem cell based drug discovery. PMID:18624353

  9. Recent advances in flavivirus antiviral drug discovery and vaccine development.

    PubMed

    Ray, Debashish; Shi, Pei-Yong

    2006-01-01

    Many flaviviruses, including yellow fever virus, dengue virus, Japanese encephalitis virus, tick-borne encephalitis virus, and West Nile virus, are globally important human pathogens. Despite an emergence and resurgence of flavivirus-mediated disease, specific therapies are not yet available; however, significant progress has been made toward the prevention and treatment of flavivirus infections. In this article we review recent advances made in the areas of (i) flavivirus vaccine development, and (ii) antiflavivirus drug discovery reported in literature and patents, and highlight strategies used in these investigations. PMID:18221133

  10. Ca2+ mobilization assays in GPCR drug discovery.

    PubMed

    Woszczek, Grzegorz; Fuerst, Elisabeth

    2015-01-01

    Intracellular calcium mobilization can be measured using several methods varying in indicator dyes and devices used. In this chapter, we describe the fluorescence-based method (FLIPR Calcium 4 Assay) developed by Molecular Devices for a FlexStation and routinely used in our laboratory for detecting intracellular calcium changes. The assay is designed to study calcium mobilization induced by majority of GPCRs and calcium channels and allows for simultaneous concentration-dependent analysis of several receptor agonists and antagonists, useful in receptor characterization and drug discovery projects. PMID:25563178

  11. New drug discovery: extraordinary opportunities in an uncertain time.

    PubMed

    Kinch, Michael S; Flath, Richard

    2015-11-01

    The way in which new medicines are discovered has irreversibly changed and the future sustainability of the enterprise is characterized by an unprecedented period of uncertainty. Herein, we convey that these changes provide unprecedented opportunities for many different players within the private and public sectors to work together and develop new models that ensure the sustainability of activities that have had an extraordinary impact; in terms of promoting public health and driving economic value. Specific examples of experiments are provided to demonstrate some of the new thinking that will be needed to ensure continuation of new drug discovery. PMID:25528676

  12. The evolution of drug discovery in systemic lupus erythematosus.

    PubMed

    Wallace, Daniel J

    2015-10-01

    Drug discovery in systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE) has lagged behind other rheumatic diseases, in large part because of difficulty in measuring change or improvement in a disorder that involves multiple organ systems to varying degrees at different times. The metrics currently used as primary endpoints are composite indices that rely mainly on disease assessment measures derived before the era of clinical trials of targeted therapies. Only one agent has been approved for the treatment of SLE since 1957. This monograph reviews the evolution of drug development for SLE, problems and pitfalls that have been encountered, and outlines the domains used to evaluate SLE in the clinic. Finally, several initiatives underway to improve clinical trial design are outlined.

  13. Accelerating drug discovery via organs-on-chips

    PubMed Central

    Chan, Chung Yu; Huang, Po-Hsun; Guo, Feng; Ding, Xiaoyun; Kapur, Vivek; Mai, John D.

    2014-01-01

    Considerable advances have been made in the development of micro-physiological systems that seek to faithfully replicate the complexity and functionality of animal and human physiology in research laboratories. Sometimes referred to as “organs-on-chips”, these systems provide key insights into physiological or pathological processes associated with health maintenance and disease control, and serve as powerful platforms for new drug development and toxicity screening. In this Focus article, we review the state-of-the-art designs and examples for developing multiple “organs-on-chips”, and discuss the potential of this emerging technology to enhance our understanding of human physiology, and to transform and accelerate the drug discovery and pre-clinical testing process. This Focus article highlights some of the recent technological advances in this field, along with the challenges that must be addressed for these technologies to fully realize their potential. PMID:24193241

  14. PubChem applications in drug discovery: a bibliometric analysis.

    PubMed

    Cheng, Tiejun; Pan, Yongmei; Hao, Ming; Wang, Yanli; Bryant, Stephen H

    2014-11-01

    A bibliometric analysis of PubChem applications is presented by reviewing 1132 research articles. The massive volume of chemical structure and bioactivity data in PubChem and its online services have been used globally in various fields including chemical biology, medicinal chemistry and informatics research. PubChem supports drug discovery in many aspects such as lead identification and optimization, compound-target profiling, polypharmacology studies and unknown chemical identity elucidation. PubChem has also become a valuable resource for developing secondary databases, informatics tools and web services. The growing PubChem resource with its public availability offers support and great opportunities for the interrogation of pharmacological mechanisms and the genetic basis of diseases, which are vital for drug innovation and repurposing.

  15. PubChem applications in drug discovery: a bibliometric analysis

    PubMed Central

    Cheng, Tiejun; Pan, Yongmei; Hao, Ming; Wang, Yanli; Bryant, Stephen H.

    2014-01-01

    A bibliometric analysis of PubChem applications is presented by reviewing 1132 research articles. The massive volume of chemical structure and bioactivity data in PubChem and its online services has been used globally in various fields including chemical biology, medicinal chemistry and informatics research. PubChem supports drug discovery in many aspects such as lead identification and optimization, compound–target profiling, polypharmacology studies and unknown chemical identity elucidation. PubChem has also become a valuable resource for developing secondary databases, informatics tools and web services. The growing PubChem resource with its public availability offers support and great opportunities for the interrogation of pharmacological mechanisms and the genetic basis of diseases, which are vital for drug innovation and repurposing. PMID:25168772

  16. The Zebrafish as a Tool to Cancer Drug Discovery

    PubMed Central

    Huiting, LN; Laroche, FJF; Feng, H

    2015-01-01

    The ability of zebrafish to faithfully recapitulate a variety of human cancers provides a unique in vivo system for drug identification and validation. Zebrafish models of human cancer generated through methodologies such as transgenesis, gene inactivation, transplantation, and carcinogenic induction have proven similar to their human counterparts both molecularly and pathologically. Suppression of cancer-relevant phenotypes provides opportunities to both identify and evaluate efficacious compounds using embryonic and adult zebrafish. After relevant compounds are selected, preclinical evaluation in mammalian models can occur, delivering lead compounds to human trials swiftly and rapidly. The advantages of in vivo imaging, large progeny, and rapid development that the zebrafish provides make it an attractive model to promote novel cancer drug discovery and reduce the hurdles and cost of clinical trials. This review explores the current methodologies to model human cancers in zebrafish, and how these cancer models have aided in formation of novel therapeutic hypotheses. PMID:26835511

  17. Current status and future prospects of toxicogenomics in drug discovery.

    PubMed

    Khan, Saifur R; Baghdasarian, Argishti; Fahlman, Richard P; Michail, Karim; Siraki, Arno G

    2014-05-01

    In drug discovery and development (DDD), the efficacy, safety and cost of new chemical entities are the main concerns of the pharmaceutical industry. Continuously updated and stricter recommendations imposed by regulatory authorities result in greater challenges being faced by the industry. Reliable high-throughput techniques integrated with well-designed analytical tools at all stages of DDD (termed 'next-generation DDD') could be a possible approach to obtaining new drug approval by cutting costs as well as ensuring the highest level of patient safety. In this review, we describe the various components of holistic toxicogenomics with examples of applications, and discuss the various analytical tools and platforms to illustrate the current status and prospects of next-generation DDD.

  18. Redox Platforms in Cancer Drug Discovery and Development

    PubMed Central

    Tew, Kenneth D.; Townsend, Danyelle M.

    2010-01-01

    Redox homeostasis is frequently dysregulated in human disease, particularly cancer. Recent and ongoing efforts seek to validate and extend this platform for the discovery/development of anticancer drugs. As the primary source of cellular redox buffer, thiols (in particular glutathione) have been therapeutically targeted in cancer treatment, myeloproliferation, hematopoietic progenitor cell mobilization and immune response. A number of “redox modulating” drugs have been, or are, under development and the pipeline seems viable. Moreover, S-glutathionylation is a protein post-translational modification that influences a number of critical cell pathways and in the medium term, defining the “glutathionome” has the possibility to provide opportunities for target identification for therapeutic intervention perhaps with a relevance that parallels ongoing efforts with the kinome. PMID:21075043

  19. Voltage gated sodium channels as drug discovery targets.

    PubMed

    Bagal, Sharan K; Marron, Brian E; Owen, Robert M; Storer, R Ian; Swain, Nigel A

    2015-01-01

    Voltage-gated sodium (NaV) channels are a family of transmembrane ion channel proteins. They function by forming a gated, water-filled pore to help establish and control cell membrane potential via control of the flow of ions between the intracellular and the extracellular environments. Blockade of NaVs has been successfully accomplished in the clinic to enable control of pathological firing patterns that occur in a diverse range of conditions such as chronic pain, epilepsy, and cardiac arrhythmias. First generation sodium channel modulator drugs, despite low inherent subtype selectivity, preferentially act on over-excited cells which reduces undesirable side effects in the clinic. However, the limited therapeutic indices observed with the first generation demanded a new generation of sodium channel inhibitors. The structure, function and the state of the art in sodium channel modulator drug discovery are discussed in this chapter.

  20. Exploiting plug-and-play electrochemistry for drug discovery.

    PubMed

    Gao, Lixia; Teng, Yong

    2016-04-01

    Electrochemistry has emerged as a powerful analytical technique for chemical analysis of living cells, biologically active molecules and metabolites. Electrochemical biosensor, microfluidics and mass spectrometry are the most frequently used methods for electrochemical detection and monitory, which comprise a collection of extremely useful measurement tools for various fields of biology and medicine. Most recently, electrochemistry has been shown to be coupled with nanotechnology and genetic engineering to generate new enabling technologies, providing rapid, selective, and sensitive detection and diagnosis platforms. The primary focus of this review is to highlight the utility of electrochemical strategies and their conjunction with other approaches for drug metabolism and discovery. Current challenges and possible future developments and applications of electrochemistry in drug studies are also discussed.

  1. Voltage gated sodium channels as drug discovery targets

    PubMed Central

    Bagal, Sharan K; Marron, Brian E; Owen, Robert M; Storer, R Ian; Swain, Nigel A

    2015-01-01

    Voltage-gated sodium (NaV) channels are a family of transmembrane ion channel proteins. They function by forming a gated, water-filled pore to help establish and control cell membrane potential via control of the flow of ions between the intracellular and the extracellular environments. Blockade of NaVs has been successfully accomplished in the clinic to enable control of pathological firing patterns that occur in a diverse range of conditions such as chronic pain, epilepsy, and cardiac arrhythmias. First generation sodium channel modulator drugs, despite low inherent subtype selectivity, preferentially act on over-excited cells which reduces undesirable side effects in the clinic. However, the limited therapeutic indices observed with the first generation demanded a new generation of sodium channel inhibitors. The structure, function and the state of the art in sodium channel modulator drug discovery are discussed in this chapter. PMID:26646477

  2. PubChem as a public resource for drug discovery.

    PubMed

    Li, Qingliang; Cheng, Tiejun; Wang, Yanli; Bryant, Stephen H

    2010-12-01

    PubChem is a public repository of small molecules and their biological properties. Currently, it contains more than 25 million unique chemical structures and 90 million bioactivity outcomes associated with several thousand macromolecular targets. To address the potential utility of this public resource for drug discovery, we systematically summarized the protein targets in PubChem by function, 3D structure and biological pathway. Moreover, we analyzed the potency, selectivity and promiscuity of the bioactive compounds identified for these biological targets, including the chemical probes generated by the NIH Molecular Libraries Program. As a public resource, PubChem lowers the barrier for researchers to advance the development of chemical tools for modulating biological processes and drug candidates for disease treatments.

  3. Collaborative virtual organisation and infrastructure for drug discovery.

    PubMed

    Hardy, Barry; Affentranger, Roman

    2013-07-01

    A virtual organisation approach was applied to collaborative drug discovery integrating experimental and computational design approaches. Scientists Against Malaria was formed with the goal of designing novel antimalarial drug candidates. The collaboration of nine founding partners carried out computational and laboratory work that produced significant volumes of data and metadata, the interpretation for the analysis of which, as well as the related decision making, was challenging. During the first phase the partners developed this 'green-field' project from initiation through to target selection and modelling, computational screening, biological materials and assay preparation, culminating in the completion of initial experimental testing. A support infrastructure involving a semantic collaborative laboratory framework, interoperating with a cloud of web services through an ontology describing the virtual and experimental screening data, was designed and tested.

  4. Machine-learning techniques applied to antibacterial drug discovery.

    PubMed

    Durrant, Jacob D; Amaro, Rommie E

    2015-01-01

    The emergence of drug-resistant bacteria threatens to revert humanity back to the preantibiotic era. Even now, multidrug-resistant bacterial infections annually result in millions of hospital days, billions in healthcare costs, and, most importantly, tens of thousands of lives lost. As many pharmaceutical companies have abandoned antibiotic development in search of more lucrative therapeutics, academic researchers are uniquely positioned to fill the pipeline. Traditional high-throughput screens and lead-optimization efforts are expensive and labor intensive. Computer-aided drug-discovery techniques, which are cheaper and faster, can accelerate the identification of novel antibiotics, leading to improved hit rates and faster transitions to preclinical and clinical testing. The current review describes two machine-learning techniques, neural networks and decision trees, that have been used to identify experimentally validated antibiotics. We conclude by describing the future directions of this exciting field.

  5. Relationship Between Psychiatric Distress and Criminal History Among Intravenous Drug Abusers in Iran

    PubMed Central

    Sahebi, Leyla; Asghari Jafar Abadi, Mohammad; Mousavi, Seyed Hosein; Khalili, Majid; Seyedi, Maryam

    2015-01-01

    Background: Sychotropic agents (alcohol, drugs, and illicit substances) have an important effect on the occurrence or exacerbation of psychological and behavioral derangements such as criminal activity and mental abnormalities. Objectives: The objective was to assess the relationship between psychiatric distress and criminal history among abusers of intravenous drugs, including heroin, benzodiazepine, codeine, cannabis, opium, and ecstasy. Materials and Methods: Criminal activity history and psychiatric distress were evaluated among intravenous drug abusers in drop-in centers (DIC) (141 subjects) and an outpatient service to delivery methadone to the addicts located in Razy Hospital (Baghdad, Iraq) (120 subjects). Logistic regression analyses using the SPSS for Windows 18.0 were used for analyzing the data. Results: About 86% of the intravenous drug abusers had psychiatric distress and 48.2% had criminal activity history. DIC addicts group had a better mental well-being compared to the other group, but criminal history rate was similar in two groups. In multiple logistic regression, addiction to heroin (odds ratio [OR] = 1.9, 95% confidence interval [CI]: 1.1 - 4.1), mental disorders (β = 0.060, P = 0.026), and low level of education was highly related with criminal activity (OR = 0.17, 95% CI: 0.03 - 0.89). Conclusions: Higher scores in mental well-being questionnaire of DIC addicts suggest the positive effects of psychological interventions. There is a possibility of the involvement of heroin in occurrence of mental disorders and criminal activity. This finding needs further investigations by larger cohort studies. PMID:26288645

  6. Evolving toward a human-cell based and multiscale approach to drug discovery for CNS disorders

    PubMed Central

    Schadt, Eric E.; Buchanan, Sean; Brennand, Kristen J.; Merchant, Kalpana M.

    2014-01-01

    A disruptive approach to therapeutic discovery and development is required in order to significantly improve the success rate of drug discovery for central nervous system (CNS) disorders. In this review, we first assess the key factors contributing to the frequent clinical failures for novel drugs. Second, we discuss cancer translational research paradigms that addressed key issues in drug discovery and development and have resulted in delivering drugs with significantly improved outcomes for patients. Finally, we discuss two emerging technologies that could improve the success rate of CNS therapies: human induced pluripotent stem cell (hiPSC)-based studies and multiscale biology models. Coincident with advances in cellular technologies that enable the generation of hiPSCs directly from patient blood or skin cells, together with methods to differentiate these hiPSC lines into specific neural cell types relevant to neurological disease, it is also now possible to combine data from large-scale forward genetics and post-mortem global epigenetic and expression studies in order to generate novel predictive models. The application of systems biology approaches to account for the multiscale nature of different data types, from genetic to molecular and cellular to clinical, can lead to new insights into human diseases that are emergent properties of biological networks, not the result of changes to single genes. Such studies have demonstrated the heterogeneity in etiological pathways and the need for studies on model systems that are patient-derived and thereby recapitulate neurological disease pathways with higher fidelity. In the context of two common and presumably representative neurological diseases, the neurodegenerative disease Alzheimer’s Disease, and the psychiatric disorder schizophrenia, we propose the need for, and exemplify the impact of, a multiscale biology approach that can integrate panomic, clinical, imaging, and literature data in order to construct

  7. Functionalized carbon nanotubes in drug design and discovery.

    PubMed

    Prato, Maurizio; Kostarelos, Kostas; Bianco, Alberto

    2008-01-01

    Carbon nanotubes (CNTs) have been proposed and actively explored as multipurpose innovative carriers for drug delivery and diagnostic applications. Their versatile physicochemical features enable the covalent and noncovalent introduction of several pharmaceutically relevant entities and allow for rational design of novel candidate nanoscale constructs for drug development. CNTs can be functionalized with different functional groups to carry simultaneously several moieties for targeting, imaging, and therapy. Among the most interesting examples of such multimodal CNT constructs described in this Account is one carrying a fluorescein probe together with the antifungal drug amphotericin B or fluorescein and the antitumor agent methotrexate. The biological action of the drug in these cases is retained or, as in the case of amphotericin B constructs, enhanced, while CNTs are able to reduce the unwanted toxicity of the drug administered alone. Ammonium-functionalized CNTs can also be considered very promising vectors for gene-encoding nucleic acids. Indeed, we have formed stable complexes between cationic CNTs and plasmid DNA and demonstrated the enhancement of the gene therapeutic capacity in comparison to DNA alone. On the other hand, CNTs conjugated with antigenic peptides can be developed as a new and effective system for synthetic vaccine applications. What makes CNTs quite unique is their ability, first shown by our groups in 2004, to passively cross membranes of many different types of cells following a translocation mechanism that has been termed the nanoneedle mechanism. In that way, CNTs open innumerable possibilities for future drug discovery based on intracellular targets that have been hard to reach until today. Moreover, adequately functionalized CNTs as those shown in this Account can be rapidly eliminated from the body following systemic administration offering further encouragment for their development. CNT excretion rates and accumulation in organs and

  8. Review: US Spelling Colorectal cancer models for novel drug discovery

    PubMed Central

    Golovko, Daniel; Kedrin, Dmitriy; Yilmaz, Omer H.; Roper, Jatin

    2016-01-01

    Introduction Despite increased screening rates and advances in targeted therapy, colorectal cancer (CRC) remains the third leading cause of cancer-related mortality. CRC models that recapitulate key features of human disease are essential to the development of novel and effective therapeutics. Classic methods of modeling CRC such as human cell lines and xenograft mice, while useful for many applications, carry significant limitations. Recently developed in vitro and in vivo models overcome some of these deficiencies and thus can be utilized to better model CRC for mechanistic and translational research. Areas Covered The authors review established models of in vitro cell culture and describe advances in organoid culture for studying normal and malignant intestine. They also discuss key features of classic xenograft models and describe other approaches for in vivo CRC research, including patient-derived xenograft, carcinogen-induced, orthotopic transplantation, and transgenic mouse models. We also describe mouse models of metastatic CRC. Expert opinion No single model is optimal for drug discovery in CRC. Genetically engineered models overcome many limitations of xenograft models. Three-dimensional organoids can be efficiently derived from both normal and malignant tissue for large-scale in vitro and in vivo (transplantation) studies, and are thus a significant advance in CRC drug discovery. PMID:26295972

  9. Selection of oral bioavailability enhancing formulations during drug discovery.

    PubMed

    Zheng, Weijia; Jain, Akash; Papoutsakis, Dimitris; Dannenfelser, Rose-Marie; Panicucci, Riccardo; Garad, Sudhakar

    2012-02-01

    The objective of this paper was to identify oral bioavailability enhancing approaches for a poorly water-soluble research compound during drug discovery stages using minimal amounts of material. LCQ789 is a pBCS (preclinical BCS) Class II compound with extremely low aqueous solubility (<1 µg/mL) and high permeability, therefore, resulting in very low oral bioavailability in preclinical species (rats and dogs). A number of solubility and/or dissolution enhancing approaches including particle size reduction, solid dispersions, lipid-based formulations and co-crystals, were considered in order to improve the compound's oral bioavailability. High-Throughput Screening (HTS) and in silico modeling (GastroPlus™) were utilized to minimize the compound consumption in early discovery stages. In vivo evaluation of selected physical form and formulation strategies was performed in rats and dogs. Amongst the formulation strategies, optimized solid dispersion and lipid-based formulation provided significant improvement in drug dissolution rate and hence, oral bioavailability. In addition, a significant impact of physical form on oral bioavailability of LCQ789 was observed. In conclusion, a thorough understanding of not only the formulation technique but also the physical form of research compounds is critical to ensure physical stability, successful pharmacokinetic (PK) profiling and early developability risk assessment.

  10. Ten years of dengue drug discovery: progress and prospects.

    PubMed

    Lim, Siew Pheng; Wang, Qing-Yin; Noble, Christian G; Chen, Yen-Liang; Dong, Hongping; Zou, Bin; Yokokawa, Fumiaki; Nilar, Shahul; Smith, Paul; Beer, David; Lescar, Julien; Shi, Pei-Yong

    2013-11-01

    To combat neglected diseases, the Novartis Institute of Tropical Diseases (NITD) was founded in 2002 through private-public funding from Novartis and the Singapore Economic Development Board. One of NITD's missions is to develop antivirals for dengue virus (DENV), the most prevalent mosquito-borne viral pathogen. Neither vaccine nor antiviral is currently available for DENV. Here we review the progress in dengue drug discovery made at NITD as well as the major discoveries made by academia and other companies. Four strategies have been pursued to identify inhibitors of DENV through targeting both viral and host proteins: (i) HTS (high-throughput screening) using virus replication assays; (ii) HTS using viral enzyme assays; (iii) structure-based in silico docking and rational design; (iv) repurposing hepatitis C virus inhibitors for DENV. Along the developmental process from hit finding to clinical candidate, many inhibitors did not advance beyond the stage of hit-to-lead optimization, due to their poor selectivity, physiochemical or pharmacokinetic properties. Only a few compounds showed efficacy in the AG129 DENV mouse model. Two nucleoside analogs, NITD-008 and Balapiravir, entered preclinical animal safety study and clinic trial, but both were terminated due to toxicity and lack of potency, respectively. Celgosivir, a host alpha-glucosidase inhibitor, is currently under clinical trial; its clinical efficacy remains to be determined. The knowledge accumulated during the past decade has provided a better rationale for ongoing dengue drug discovery. Though challenging, we are optimistic that this continuous, concerted effort will lead to an effective dengue therapy.

  11. Androgen receptor: structure, role in prostate cancer and drug discovery

    PubMed Central

    Tan, MH Eileen; Li, Jun; Xu, H Eric; Melcher, Karsten; Yong, Eu-leong

    2015-01-01

    Androgens and androgen receptors (AR) play a pivotal role in expression of the male phenotype. Several diseases, such as androgen insensitivity syndrome (AIS) and prostate cancer, are associated with alterations in AR functions. Indeed, androgen blockade by drugs that prevent the production of androgens and/or block the action of the AR inhibits prostate cancer growth. However, resistance to these drugs often occurs after 2–3 years as the patients develop castration-resistant prostate cancer (CRPC). In CRPC, a functional AR remains a key regulator. Early studies focused on the functional domains of the AR and its crucial role in the pathology. The elucidation of the structures of the AR DNA binding domain (DBD) and ligand binding domain (LBD) provides a new framework for understanding the functions of this receptor and leads to the development of rational drug design for the treatment of prostate cancer. An overview of androgen receptor structure and activity, its actions in prostate cancer, and how structural information and high-throughput screening have been or can be used for drug discovery are provided herein. PMID:24909511

  12. Emerging Computational Methods for the Rational Discovery of Allosteric Drugs

    PubMed Central

    2016-01-01

    Allosteric drug development holds promise for delivering medicines that are more selective and less toxic than those that target orthosteric sites. To date, the discovery of allosteric binding sites and lead compounds has been mostly serendipitous, achieved through high-throughput screening. Over the past decade, structural data has become more readily available for larger protein systems and more membrane protein classes (e.g., GPCRs and ion channels), which are common allosteric drug targets. In parallel, improved simulation methods now provide better atomistic understanding of the protein dynamics and cooperative motions that are critical to allosteric mechanisms. As a result of these advances, the field of predictive allosteric drug development is now on the cusp of a new era of rational structure-based computational methods. Here, we review algorithms that predict allosteric sites based on sequence data and molecular dynamics simulations, describe tools that assess the druggability of these pockets, and discuss how Markov state models and topology analyses provide insight into the relationship between protein dynamics and allosteric drug binding. In each section, we first provide an overview of the various method classes before describing relevant algorithms and software packages. PMID:27074285

  13. Androgen receptor: structure, role in prostate cancer and drug discovery.

    PubMed

    Tan, M H Eileen; Li, Jun; Xu, H Eric; Melcher, Karsten; Yong, Eu-leong

    2015-01-01

    Androgens and androgen receptors (AR) play a pivotal role in expression of the male phenotype. Several diseases, such as androgen insensitivity syndrome (AIS) and prostate cancer, are associated with alterations in AR functions. Indeed, androgen blockade by drugs that prevent the production of androgens and/or block the action of the AR inhibits prostate cancer growth. However, resistance to these drugs often occurs after 2-3 years as the patients develop castration-resistant prostate cancer (CRPC). In CRPC, a functional AR remains a key regulator. Early studies focused on the functional domains of the AR and its crucial role in the pathology. The elucidation of the structures of the AR DNA binding domain (DBD) and ligand binding domain (LBD) provides a new framework for understanding the functions of this receptor and leads to the development of rational drug design for the treatment of prostate cancer. An overview of androgen receptor structure and activity, its actions in prostate cancer, and how structural information and high-throughput screening have been or can be used for drug discovery are provided herein. PMID:24909511

  14. Cancer Metabolism: New Validated Targets for Drug Discovery

    PubMed Central

    Sotgia, Federica; Martinez-Outschoorn, Ubaldo E.; Lisanti, Michael P.

    2013-01-01

    Recent studies in cancer metabolism directly implicate catabolic fibroblasts as a new rich source of i) energy and ii) biomass, for the growth and survival of anabolic cancer cells. Conversely, anabolic cancer cells upregulate oxidative mitochondrial metabolism, to take advantage of the abundant fibroblast fuel supply. This simple model of “metabolic-symbiosis” has now been independently validated in several different types of human cancers, including breast, ovarian, and prostate tumors. Biomarkers of metabolic-symbiosis are excellent predictors of tumor recurrence, metastasis, and drug resistance, as well as poor patient survival. New pre-clinical models of metabolic-symbiosis have been generated and they genetically validate that catabolic fibroblasts promote tumor growth and metastasis. Over 30 different stable lines of catabolic fibroblasts and >10 different lines of anabolic cancer cells have been created and are well-characterized. For example, catabolic fibroblasts harboring ATG16L1 increase tumor cell metastasis by >11.5-fold, despite the fact that genetically identical cancer cells were used. Taken together, these studies provide >40 novel validated targets, for new drug discovery and anti-cancer therapy. Since anabolic cancer cells amplify their capacity for oxidative mitochondrial metabolism, we should consider therapeutically targeting mitochondrial biogenesis and OXPHOS in epithelial cancer cells. As metabolic-symbiosis promotes drug-resistance and may represent the escape mechanism during anti-angiogenic therapy, new drugs targeting metabolic-symbiosis may also be effective in cancer patients with recurrent and advanced metastatic disease. PMID:23896568

  15. Network-Based Approaches in Drug Discovery and Early Development

    PubMed Central

    Harrold, JM; Ramanathan, M; Mager, DE

    2015-01-01

    Identification of novel targets is a critical first step in the drug discovery and development process. Most diseases such as cancer, metabolic disorders, and neurological disorders are complex, and their pathogenesis involves multiple genetic and environmental factors. Finding a viable drug target–drug combination with high potential for yielding clinical success within the efficacy–toxicity spectrum is extremely challenging. Many examples are now available in which network-based approaches show potential for the identification of novel targets and for the repositioning of established targets. The objective of this article is to highlight network approaches for identifying novel targets with greater chances of gaining approved drugs with maximal efficacy and minimal side effects. Further enhancement of these approaches may emerge from effectively integrating computational systems biology with pharmacodynamic systems analysis. Coupling genomics, proteomics, and metabolomics databases with systems pharmacology modeling may aid in the development of disease-specific networks that can be further used to build confidence in target identification. PMID:24025802

  16. Informed toxicity assessment in drug discovery: systems-based toxicology.

    PubMed

    Mayne, James T; Ku, Warren W; Kennedy, Scott P

    2006-01-01

    Technological advances in the biological, chemical and in silico sciences have transformed many scientific disciplines, including toxicology. A vast new palate of toxicity testing tools is now available to investigators, enabling the generation of enormous amounts of data using only small amounts of test sample and at relatively low cost. In addition to these tools, the pharmaceutical industry has an urgent need for toxicity testing earlier in the process, based on the recognition that safety issues are the single largest cause of drug candidate attrition from development portfolios and the marketplace. However, along with the opportunity provided by new testing tools comes the dilemma of deciding which tools to use and, equally as important, when and why to use them. It may well be unwise to apply a new toxicity test or screening system simply because one can, as both false positive and false negative outcomes can quickly negate the value of a toxicity test system and may even have a net negative impact on drug discovery productivity. This can be true even of test systems that are considered to be 'validated' in the traditional sense. How then is an investigator or drug discovery organization to decide which of the new tools to use, and when to use them? Proposed herein is a strategy for identifying high-value toxicity testing systems and strategies based on program knowledge and informed decision-making. The decision to apply a certain toxicity testing system in this strategy is informed by knowledge of the pharmacological target, the chemical features of molecules active at the pharmacological target, and existing public domain or institutional learning. This 'fit-for-purpose' approach limits non-targeted or 'uninformed' toxicity screening to only those few test systems with high specificity, strong outcome concordance and molecular relevance to frequently encountered toxicity risks (eg, genotoxicity). Additional toxicity testing and screening is then conducted

  17. Integrated expressional analysis: application to the drug discovery process.

    PubMed

    Ilyin, Sergey E; Horowitz, Daniel; Belkowski, Stanley M; Xin, Hong; Eckardt, Annette J; Darrow, Andrew L; Chen, Cailin; Maley, Derrick; D'Andrea, Michael; Plata-Salamán, Carlos R; Derian, Claudia K

    2005-11-01

    Microarray technology enables high-throughput testing of gene expression to investigate various neuroscience related questions. This in turn creates a demand for scalable methods to confirm microarray results and the opportunity to use this information to discover and test novel pathways and therapeutic applications. Discovery of new central nervous system (CNS) treatments requires a comprehensive understanding of multiple aspects including the biology of a target, the pathophysiology of a disease/disorder, and the selection of successful lead compounds as well as efficient biomarker and drug disposition strategies such as absorption (how a drug is absorbed), distribution (how a drug spreads through an organism), metabolism (chemical conversion of a drug, if any, and into which substances), and elimination (how is a drug eliminated) (ADME). Understanding of the toxicity is also of paramount importance. These approaches, in turn, require novel high-content integrative assay technologies that provide thorough information about changes in cell biology. To increase efficiency of profiling, characterization, and validation, we established a new screening strategy that combines high-content image-based testing on Array Scan (Cellomics) with a confocal system and the multiplexed TaqMan RT-PCR method for quantitative mRNA expression analysis. This approach could serve as an interface between high-throughput microarray testing and specific application of markers discovered in the course of a microarray experiment. Markers could pinpoint activation or inhibition of a molecular pathway related, for instance, to neuronal viability. We demonstrate the successful testing of the same cell population in an image-based translocational assay followed by poly(A) mRNA capture and multiplexed single tube RT-PCR. In addition, Ciphergen ProteinChip analysis can be performed on the supernatant, thus allowing significant complementarity in the data output and interpretation by also

  18. Approaches for minimizing metabolic activation of new drug candidates in drug discovery.

    PubMed

    Kumar, Sanjeev; Mitra, Kaushik; Kassahun, Kelem; Baillie, Thomas A

    2010-01-01

    A large body of circumstantial evidence suggests that metabolic activation of drug candidates to chemically reactive electrophilic metabolites that are capable of covalently modifying cellular macromolecules may result in acute and/or immune system-mediated idiosyncratic toxicities in humans. Thus, minimizing the potential for metabolic activation of new drug candidates during the drug discovery and lead optimization stage represents a prudent strategy to help discover and develop the next generation of safe and effective therapeutic agents. In the present chapter, we discuss the scientific methodologies that currently are available to industrial pharmaceutical scientists for assessing and minimizing metabolic activation during drug discovery, their attributes and limitations, and future scientific directions that have the potential to help advance progress in this field. We also propose a roadmap that should help utilize the armamentarium of available scientific tools in a logical way and contribute to addressing metabolic activation issues in the drug discovery-setting in a rapid, scientifically appropriate, and resource-conscious manner.

  19. On the industrial applications of MCRs: molecular diversity in drug discovery and generic drug synthesis.

    PubMed

    Kalinski, Cédric; Umkehrer, Michael; Weber, Lutz; Kolb, Jürgen; Burdack, Christoph; Ross, Günther

    2010-08-01

    During the last decades, multicomponent chemistry has gained much attention in pharmaceutical research, especially in the context of lead finding and optimization. Here, in particular, the main advantages of multicomponent reactions (MCRs) like ease of automation and high diversity generation were utilized. In consequence of these beneficial properties, a plethora of new MCRs combined with appropriate classical reaction sequences have been published, the accessible chemical space was extended steadily. In the meantime, the desired high diversity became a challenge itself, because by now the systematic use of this huge and unmanageable space for drug discovery was limited by the lack of suitable computational tools. Therefore, this article provides an insight for the rational use of this enormous chemical space in drug discovery and generic drug synthesis. In this context, a short overview of the applied chemo informatics, necessary for the virtual screening of the biggest available chemical space, is given. Furthermore, some examples for recently developed multicomponent sequences are presented.

  20. Distributed Drug Discovery: Advancing Chemical Education through Contextualized Combinatorial Solid-Phase Organic Laboratories

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Scott, William L.; Denton, Ryan E.; Marrs, Kathleen A.; Durrant, Jacob D.; Samaritoni, J. Geno; Abraham, Milata M.; Brown, Stephen P.; Carnahan, Jon M.; Fischer, Lindsey G.; Glos, Courtney E.; Sempsrott, Peter J.; O'Donnell, Martin J.

    2015-01-01

    The Distributed Drug Discovery (D3) program trains students in three drug discovery disciplines (synthesis, computational analysis, and biological screening) while addressing the important challenge of discovering drug leads for neglected diseases. This article focuses on implementation of the synthesis component in the second-semester…

  1. 3D in vitro technology for drug discovery.

    PubMed

    Hosseinkhani, Hossein

    2012-02-01

    Three-dimensional (3D) in vitro systems that can mimic organ and tissue structure and function in vivo, will be of great benefit for a variety of biological applications from basic biology to toxicity testing and drug discovery. There have been several attempts to generate 3D tissue models but most of these models require costly equipment, and the most serious disadvantage in them is that they are too far from the mature human organs in vivo. Because of these problems, research and development in drug discovery, toxicity testing and biotech industries are highly expensive, and involve sacrifice of countless animals and it takes several years to bring a single drug/product to the market or to find the toxicity or otherwise of chemical entities. Our group has been actively working on several alternative models by merging biomaterials science, nanotechnology and biological principles to generate 3D in vitro living organs, to be called "Human Organs-on-Chip", to mimic natural organ/tissues, in order to reduce animal testing and clinical trials. We have fabricated a novel type of mechanically and biologically bio-mimicking collagen-based hydrogel that would provide for interconnected mini-wells in which 3D cell/organ culture of human samples in a manner similar to human organs with extracellular matrix (ECM) molecules would be possible. These products mimic the physical, chemical, and biological properties of natural organs and tissues at different scales. This paper will review the outcome of our several experiments so far in this direction and the future perspectives.

  2. Open Source Drug Discovery in Practice: A Case Study

    PubMed Central

    Årdal, Christine; Røttingen, John-Arne

    2012-01-01

    Background Open source drug discovery offers potential for developing new and inexpensive drugs to combat diseases that disproportionally affect the poor. The concept borrows two principle aspects from open source computing (i.e., collaboration and open access) and applies them to pharmaceutical innovation. By opening a project to external contributors, its research capacity may increase significantly. To date there are only a handful of open source R&D projects focusing on neglected diseases. We wanted to learn from these first movers, their successes and failures, in order to generate a better understanding of how a much-discussed theoretical concept works in practice and may be implemented. Methodology/Principal Findings A descriptive case study was performed, evaluating two specific R&D projects focused on neglected diseases. CSIR Team India Consortium's Open Source Drug Discovery project (CSIR OSDD) and The Synaptic Leap's Schistosomiasis project (TSLS). Data were gathered from four sources: interviews of participating members (n = 14), a survey of potential members (n = 61), an analysis of the websites and a literature review. Both cases have made significant achievements; however, they have done so in very different ways. CSIR OSDD encourages international collaboration, but its process facilitates contributions from mostly Indian researchers and students. Its processes are formal with each task being reviewed by a mentor (almost always offline) before a result is made public. TSLS, on the other hand, has attracted contributors internationally, albeit significantly fewer than CSIR OSDD. Both have obtained funding used to pay for access to facilities, physical resources and, at times, labor costs. TSLS releases its results into the public domain, whereas CSIR OSDD asserts ownership over its results. Conclusions/Significance Technically TSLS is an open source project, whereas CSIR OSDD is a crowdsourced project. However, both have enabled high quality

  3. Zonisamide produces weight loss in psychotropic drug-treated psychiatric outpatients.

    PubMed

    Lim, JaeHyoung; Ko, Young-Hoon; Joe, Sook-Haeng; Han, Changsu; Lee, Moon-Soo; Yang, Jaewon

    2011-12-01

    This study examined the long-term effectiveness and tolerability of zonisamide for weight control in psychiatric outpatients using various psychotropic medications. We conducted a systematic chart review of 82 psychiatric outpatients with unwanted weight gain after the introduction of psychotropic drugs between January 2008 and September 2009 at Korea University Ansan Hospital. The primary outcome measure was the effect of zonisamide on body mass index (BMI). Additional outcome measures included safety and tolerability as assessed by the clinical global impression-severity of illness scale (CGI-S) and discontinuation rate. The mean final dose of zonisamide was 124.6±53.4 mg/day and ranged from 50mg/day to 300 mg/day. The mean BMI reduction was 0.8±1.7 kg/m(2) and ranged from -2.9 kg/m(2) to 4.7 kg/m(2) (p<0.001). We also observed a significant reduction in CGI-S scores from the baseline (3.8±0.9) to the endpoint (3.3±0.8; p<0.001). Twelve patients (14.6%) discontinued their zonisamide treatment due to its side effects. Patients treated with zonisamide showed significant weight loss. Furthermore, its treatment was generally safe and well tolerated with few negative effects on patients' overall psychiatric symptoms. Additional research is required to confirm these results and to investigate whether patients have rebound weight gains after discontinuing zonisamide.

  4. AutoDrug: fully automated macromolecular crystallography workflows for fragment-based drug discovery

    PubMed Central

    Tsai, Yingssu; McPhillips, Scott E.; González, Ana; McPhillips, Timothy M.; Zinn, Daniel; Cohen, Aina E.; Feese, Michael D.; Bushnell, David; Tiefenbrunn, Theresa; Stout, C. David; Ludaescher, Bertram; Hedman, Britt; Hodgson, Keith O.; Soltis, S. Michael

    2013-01-01

    AutoDrug is software based upon the scientific workflow paradigm that integrates the Stanford Synchrotron Radiation Lightsource macromolecular crystallography beamlines and third-party processing software to automate the crystallo­graphy steps of the fragment-based drug-discovery process. AutoDrug screens a cassette of fragment-soaked crystals, selects crystals for data collection based on screening results and user-specified criteria and determines optimal data-collection strategies. It then collects and processes diffraction data, performs molecular replacement using provided models and detects electron density that is likely to arise from bound fragments. All processes are fully automated, i.e. are performed without user interaction or supervision. Samples can be screened in groups corresponding to particular proteins, crystal forms and/or soaking conditions. A single AutoDrug run is only limited by the capacity of the sample-storage dewar at the beamline: currently 288 samples. AutoDrug was developed in conjunction with RestFlow, a new scientific workflow-automation framework. RestFlow simplifies the design of AutoDrug by managing the flow of data and the organization of results and by orchestrating the execution of computational pipeline steps. It also simplifies the execution and interaction of third-party programs and the beamline-control system. Modeling AutoDrug as a scientific workflow enables multiple variants that meet the requirements of different user groups to be developed and supported. A workflow tailored to mimic the crystallography stages comprising the drug-discovery pipeline of CoCrystal Discovery Inc. has been deployed and successfully demonstrated. This workflow was run once on the same 96 samples that the group had examined manually and the workflow cycled successfully through all of the samples, collected data from the same samples that were selected manually and located the same peaks of unmodeled density in the resulting difference

  5. Quantum dots and other nanoparticles: what can they offer to drug discovery?

    PubMed

    Ozkan, Mihrimah

    2004-12-15

    Nanocrystals (quantum dots) and other nanoparticles (gold colloids, magnetic bars, nanobars, dendrimers and nanoshells) have been receiving a lot of attention recently with their unique properties for potential use in drug discovery, bioengineering and therapeutics. In this review, structural, optical and biological assets of nanocrystals are summarized and their applications to drug discovery studies are discussed. Unique properties of these nanoparticles can offer new advancements in drug discovery. PMID:15582795

  6. Early drug discovery and the rise of pharmaceutical chemistry.

    PubMed

    Jones, Alan Wayne

    2011-06-01

    Studies in the field of forensic pharmacology and toxicology would not be complete without some knowledge of the history of drug discovery, the various personalities involved, and the events leading to the development and introduction of new therapeutic agents. The first medicinal drugs came from natural sources and existed in the form of herbs, plants, roots, vines and fungi. Until the mid-nineteenth century nature's pharmaceuticals were all that were available to relieve man's pain and suffering. The first synthetic drug, chloral hydrate, was discovered in 1869 and introduced as a sedative-hypnotic; it is still available today in some countries. The first pharmaceutical companies were spin-offs from the textiles and synthetic dye industry and owe much to the rich source of organic chemicals derived from the distillation of coal (coal-tar). The first analgesics and antipyretics, exemplified by phenacetin and acetanilide, were simple chemical derivatives of aniline and p-nitrophenol, both of which were byproducts from coal-tar. An extract from the bark of the white willow tree had been used for centuries to treat various fevers and inflammation. The active principle in white willow, salicin or salicylic acid, had a bitter taste and irritated the gastric mucosa, but a simple chemical modification was much more palatable. This was acetylsalicylic acid, better known as Aspirin®, the first blockbuster drug. At the start of the twentieth century, the first of the barbiturate family of drugs entered the pharmacopoeia and the rest, as they say, is history. PMID:21698778

  7. Miniaturized Cultivation of Microbiota for Antimalarial Drug Discovery.

    PubMed

    Waterman, Carrie; Calcul, Laurent; Beau, Jeremy; Ma, Wai Sheung; Lebar, Matthew D; von Salm, Jacqueline L; Harter, Charles; Mutka, Tina; Morton, Lindsay C; Maignan, Patrick; Barisic, Betty; van Olphen, Alberto; Kyle, Dennis E; Vrijmoed, Lilian; Pang, Ka-Lai; Pearce, Cedric J; Baker, Bill J

    2016-01-01

    The ongoing search for effective antiplasmodial agents remains essential in the fight against malaria worldwide. Emerging parasitic drug resistance places an urgent need to explore chemotherapies with novel structures and mechanisms of action. Natural products have historically provided effective antimalarial drug scaffolds. In an effort to search nature's chemical potential for antiplasmodial agents, unconventionally sourced organisms coupled with innovative cultivation techniques were utilized. Approximately 60,000 niche microbes from various habitats (slow-growing terrestrial fungi, Antarctic microbes, and mangrove endophytes) were cultivated on a small-scale, extracted, and used in high-throughput screening to determine antimalarial activity. About 1% of crude extracts were considered active and 6% partially active (≥ 67% inhibition at 5 and 50 μg/mL, respectively). Active extracts (685) were cultivated on a large-scale, fractionated, and screened for both antimalarial activity and cytotoxicity. High interest fractions (397) with an IC50 < 1.11 μg/mL were identified and subjected to chromatographic separation for compound characterization and dereplication. Identifying active compounds with nanomolar antimalarial activity coupled with a selectivity index tenfold higher was accomplished with two of the 52 compounds isolated. This microscale, high-throughput screening project for antiplasmodial agents is discussed in the context of current natural product drug discovery efforts.

  8. Miniaturized Cultivation of Microbiota for Antimalarial Drug Discovery.

    PubMed

    Waterman, Carrie; Calcul, Laurent; Beau, Jeremy; Ma, Wai Sheung; Lebar, Matthew D; von Salm, Jacqueline L; Harter, Charles; Mutka, Tina; Morton, Lindsay C; Maignan, Patrick; Barisic, Betty; van Olphen, Alberto; Kyle, Dennis E; Vrijmoed, Lilian; Pang, Ka-Lai; Pearce, Cedric J; Baker, Bill J

    2016-01-01

    The ongoing search for effective antiplasmodial agents remains essential in the fight against malaria worldwide. Emerging parasitic drug resistance places an urgent need to explore chemotherapies with novel structures and mechanisms of action. Natural products have historically provided effective antimalarial drug scaffolds. In an effort to search nature's chemical potential for antiplasmodial agents, unconventionally sourced organisms coupled with innovative cultivation techniques were utilized. Approximately 60,000 niche microbes from various habitats (slow-growing terrestrial fungi, Antarctic microbes, and mangrove endophytes) were cultivated on a small-scale, extracted, and used in high-throughput screening to determine antimalarial activity. About 1% of crude extracts were considered active and 6% partially active (≥ 67% inhibition at 5 and 50 μg/mL, respectively). Active extracts (685) were cultivated on a large-scale, fractionated, and screened for both antimalarial activity and cytotoxicity. High interest fractions (397) with an IC50 < 1.11 μg/mL were identified and subjected to chromatographic separation for compound characterization and dereplication. Identifying active compounds with nanomolar antimalarial activity coupled with a selectivity index tenfold higher was accomplished with two of the 52 compounds isolated. This microscale, high-throughput screening project for antiplasmodial agents is discussed in the context of current natural product drug discovery efforts. PMID:25545963

  9. Proteomics. Making sense of genomic information for drug discovery.

    PubMed

    Whitelegge, J P; le Coutre, J

    2001-01-01

    As an increasing number of available genomes triggers a gold rush in modern biology, the scientific challenge shifts towards understanding the total of the encoded information, most notably the proteins, their structures, functions and interactions. Currently this work is in its early stages but the near future will bring a merger of biology, engineering and informatics with a far broader impact on society than pure genomics has had so far. The challenge of characterizing the structures and functions of all proteins in a given cell demands technological advances beyond the classical methodologies of protein biochemistry. Mass spectrometry techniques for high-throughput protein identification, including peptide mass fingerprinting, sequence tagging and mass spectrometry on full-length proteins are providing the driving force behind proteomics endeavors. New technologies are needed to move high-resolution protein structure determination to an industrial scale. Nonetheless, improvements in techniques for the separation of intrinsic membrane proteins are enabling proteomics efforts towards identifying drug targets within this important class of biomolecules. Beyond the acquisition of data on sequences, structures and interactions, however, the major work in drug discovery remains: the screening of large candidate compound libraries combined with clever medicinal chemistry that guarantees selective action and defined delivery of the drug.

  10. Recent advances in combinatorial biosynthesis for drug discovery

    PubMed Central

    Sun, Huihua; Liu, Zihe; Zhao, Huimin; Ang, Ee Lui

    2015-01-01

    Because of extraordinary structural diversity and broad biological activities, natural products have played a significant role in drug discovery. These therapeutically important secondary metabolites are assembled and modified by dedicated biosynthetic pathways in their host living organisms. Traditionally, chemists have attempted to synthesize natural product analogs that are important sources of new drugs. However, the extraordinary structural complexity of natural products sometimes makes it challenging for traditional chemical synthesis, which usually involves multiple steps, harsh conditions, toxic organic solvents, and byproduct wastes. In contrast, combinatorial biosynthesis exploits substrate promiscuity and employs engineered enzymes and pathways to produce novel “unnatural” natural products, substantially expanding the structural diversity of natural products with potential pharmaceutical value. Thus, combinatorial biosynthesis provides an environmentally friendly way to produce natural product analogs. Efficient expression of the combinatorial biosynthetic pathway in genetically tractable heterologous hosts can increase the titer of the compound, eventually resulting in less expensive drugs. In this review, we will discuss three major strategies for combinatorial biosynthesis: 1) precursor-directed biosynthesis; 2) enzyme-level modification, which includes swapping of the entire domains, modules and subunits, site-specific mutagenesis, and directed evolution; 3) pathway-level recombination. Recent examples of combinatorial biosynthesis employing these strategies will also be highlighted in this review. PMID:25709407

  11. Risk genes for schizophrenia: translational opportunities for drug discovery.

    PubMed

    Winchester, Catherine L; Pratt, Judith A; Morris, Brian J

    2014-07-01

    Despite intensive research over many years, the treatment of schizophrenia remains a major health issue. Current and emerging treatments for schizophrenia are based upon the classical dopamine and glutamate hypotheses of disease. Existing first and second generation antipsychotic drugs based upon the dopamine hypothesis are limited by their inability to treat all symptom domains and their undesirable side effect profiles. Third generation drugs based upon the glutamate hypothesis of disease are currently under evaluation but are more likely to be used as add on treatments. Hence there is a large unmet clinical need. A major challenge in neuropsychiatric disease research is the relatively limited knowledge of disease mechanisms. However, as our understanding of the genetic causes of the disease evolves, novel strategies for the development of improved therapeutic agents will become apparent. In this review we consider the current status of knowledge of the genetic basis of schizophrenia, including methods for identifying genetic variants associated with the disorder and how they impact on gene function. Although the genetic architecture of schizophrenia is complex, some targets amenable to pharmacological intervention can be discerned. We conclude that many challenges lie ahead but the stratification of patients according to biobehavioural constructs that cross existing disease classifications but with common genetic and neurobiological bases, offer opportunities for new approaches to effective drug discovery.

  12. Recent advances in combinatorial biosynthesis for drug discovery.

    PubMed

    Sun, Huihua; Liu, Zihe; Zhao, Huimin; Ang, Ee Lui

    2015-01-01

    Because of extraordinary structural diversity and broad biological activities, natural products have played a significant role in drug discovery. These therapeutically important secondary metabolites are assembled and modified by dedicated biosynthetic pathways in their host living organisms. Traditionally, chemists have attempted to synthesize natural product analogs that are important sources of new drugs. However, the extraordinary structural complexity of natural products sometimes makes it challenging for traditional chemical synthesis, which usually involves multiple steps, harsh conditions, toxic organic solvents, and byproduct wastes. In contrast, combinatorial biosynthesis exploits substrate promiscuity and employs engineered enzymes and pathways to produce novel "unnatural" natural products, substantially expanding the structural diversity of natural products with potential pharmaceutical value. Thus, combinatorial biosynthesis provides an environmentally friendly way to produce natural product analogs. Efficient expression of the combinatorial biosynthetic pathway in genetically tractable heterologous hosts can increase the titer of the compound, eventually resulting in less expensive drugs. In this review, we will discuss three major strategies for combinatorial biosynthesis: 1) precursor-directed biosynthesis; 2) enzyme-level modification, which includes swapping of the entire domains, modules and subunits, site-specific mutagenesis, and directed evolution; 3) pathway-level recombination. Recent examples of combinatorial biosynthesis employing these strategies will also be highlighted in this review.

  13. Central Nervous System Multiparameter Optimization Desirability: Application in Drug Discovery.

    PubMed

    Wager, Travis T; Hou, Xinjun; Verhoest, Patrick R; Villalobos, Anabella

    2016-06-15

    Significant progress has been made in prospectively designing molecules using the central nervous system multiparameter optimization (CNS MPO) desirability tool, as evidenced by the analysis reported herein of a second wave of drug candidates that originated after the development and implementation of this tool. This simple-to-use design algorithm has expanded design space for CNS candidates and has further demonstrated the advantages of utilizing a flexible, multiparameter approach in drug discovery rather than individual parameters and hard cutoffs of physicochemical properties. The CNS MPO tool has helped to increase the percentage of compounds nominated for clinical development that exhibit alignment of ADME attributes, cross the blood-brain barrier, and reside in lower-risk safety space (low ClogP and high TPSA). The use of this tool has played a role in reducing the number of compounds submitted to exploratory toxicity studies and increasing the survival of our drug candidates through regulatory toxicology into First in Human studies. Overall, the CNS MPO algorithm has helped to improve the prioritization of design ideas and the quality of the compounds nominated for clinical development.

  14. [Use of GWAS for drug discovery and development].

    PubMed

    Liou, Shyh-Yuh

    2014-01-01

    The Human Genome Project was completed in 2003. A catalog of common genetic variants in humans was built at the International HapMap Project. These variants, known as single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs), occur in human DNA and distributed among populations in different parts of the world. By using the Linkage Disequilibrium and mapping blocks are able to define quantitative characters of inherited diseases. Currently 50 K-5.0 M microarray are available commercially, which based on the results of following the ENCODE & 1000 genome projects. Therefore the genome wide association study (GWAS) has become a key tool for discovering variants that contribute to human diseases and provide maximum coverage of the genome, in contrast to the traditional approach in which only a few candidates genes was targeted. The available public GWAS databases provided valuable biological insights and new discovery for many common diseases, due to the availability of low cost microarray. The GWAS has the potential to provide a solution for the lack of new drug targets and reducing drug failure due to adverse drug reactions either. These are critical issues for pharmaceutical companies. Here, the Japan PGx Data Science Consortium (JPDSC), which was established on February 20, 2009 by six leading pharmaceutical companies in Japan, was introduced. We believe that the efforts of stakeholders including the regulatory authorities, health providers, and pharmaceutical companies to understand the potential and ethical risk of using genetic information including GWAS will bring benefits to patients in the future.

  15. The importance of new companies for drug discovery: origins of a decade of new drugs.

    PubMed

    Kneller, Robert

    2010-11-01

    Understanding the factors that promote drug innovation is important both for improvements in health care and for the future of organizations engaged in drug discovery research and development. By identifying the inventors of 252 new drugs approved by the US Food and Drug Administration from 1998 to 2007 and their places of work, and also classifying these drugs according to innovativeness, this study investigates the contribution of different types of organizations and regions to drug innovation during this period. The data indicate that drugs initially discovered in biotechnology companies or universities accounted for approximately half of the scientifically innovative drugs approved, as well as half of those that responded to unmet medical needs, although their contribution to the total number of new drugs was proportionately lower. The biotechnology companies were located mainly in the United States. This article presents a comprehensive analysis of these data and discusses potential contributing factors to the trends observed, with the aim of aiding efforts to promote drug innovation.

  16. Animal models in the drug discovery pipeline for Alzheimer's disease

    PubMed Central

    Van Dam, Debby; De Deyn, Peter Paul

    2011-01-01

    With increasing feasibility of predicting conversion of mild cognitive impairment to dementia based on biomarker profiling, the urgent need for efficacious disease-modifying compounds has become even more critical. Despite intensive research, underlying pathophysiological mechanisms remain insufficiently documented for purposeful target discovery. Translational research based on valid animal models may aid in alleviating some of the unmet needs in the current Alzheimer's disease pharmaceutical market, which includes disease-modification, increased efficacy and safety, reduction of the number of treatment unresponsive patients and patient compliance. The development and phenotyping of animal models is indeed essential in Alzheimer's disease-related research as valid models enable the appraisal of early pathological processes – which are often not accessible in patients, and subsequent target discovery and evaluation. This review paper summarizes and critically evaluates currently available animal models, and discusses their value to the Alzheimer drug discovery pipeline. Models dealt with include spontaneous models in various species, including senescence-accelerated mice, chemical and lesion-induced rodent models, and genetically modified models developed in Drosophila melanogaster, Caenorhabditis elegans, Danio rerio and rodents. Although highly valid animal models exist, none of the currently available models recapitulates all aspects of human Alzheimer's disease, and one should always be aware of the potential dangers of uncritical extrapolating from model organisms to a human condition that takes decades to develop and mainly involves higher cognitive functions. LINKED ARTICLES This article is part of a themed issue on Translational Neuropharmacology. To view the other articles in this issue visit http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/bph.2011.164.issue-4 PMID:21371009

  17. Recent advances in computer-aided drug design as applied to anti-influenza drug discovery.

    PubMed

    Mallipeddi, Prema L; Kumar, Gyanendra; White, Stephen W; Webb, Thomas R

    2014-01-01

    Influenza is a seasonal and serious health threat, and the recent outbreak of H7N9 following the pandemic spread of H1N1 in 2009 has served to emphasize the importance of anti-influenza drug discovery. Zanamivir (Relenza™) and oseltamivir (Tamiflu(®)) are two antiviral drugs currently recommended by the CDC for treating influenza. Both are examples of the successful application of structure-based drug design strategies. These strategies have combined computer- based approaches, such as docking- and pharmacophore-based virtual screening with X-ray crystallographic structural analyses. Docking is a routinely used computational method to identify potential hits from large compound libraries. This method has evolved from simple rigid docking approaches to flexible docking methods to handle receptor flexibility and to enhance hit rates in virtual screening. Virtual screening approaches can employ both ligand-based and structurebased pharmacophore models depending on the available information. The exponential growth in computing power has increasingly facilitated the application of computer-aided methods in drug discovery, and they now play significant roles in the search for novel therapeutics. An overview of these computational tools is presented in this review, and recent advances and challenges will be discussed. The focus of the review will be anti-influenza drug discovery and how advances in our understanding of viral biology have led to the discovery of novel influenza protein targets. Also discussed will be strategies to circumvent the problem of resistance emerging from rapid mutations that has seriously compromised the efficacy of current anti-influenza therapies.

  18. Ligand Binding Thermodynamics in Drug Discovery: Still a Hot Tip?

    PubMed

    Geschwindner, Stefan; Ulander, Johan; Johansson, Patrik

    2015-08-27

    The use of ligand binding thermodynamics has been proposed as a potential success factor to accelerate drug discovery. However, despite the intuitive appeal of optimizing binding enthalpy, a number of factors complicate routine use of thermodynamic data. On a macroscopic level, a range of experimental parameters including temperature and buffer choice significantly influence the observed thermodynamic signatures. On a microscopic level, solute effects, structural flexibility, and cooperativity lead to nonlinear changes in enthalpy. This multifactorial character hides essential enthalpy contributions of intermolecular contacts, making them experimentally nonobservable. In this perspective, we present three case studies, reflect on some key factors affecting thermodynamic signatures, and investigate their relation to the hydrophobic effect, enthalpy-entropy compensation, lipophilic ligand efficiency, and promiscuity. The studies highlight that enthalpy and entropy cannot be used as direct end points but can together with calculations increase our understanding of ligand binding and identify interesting outliers that do not behave as expected.

  19. Native Mass Spectrometry in Fragment-Based Drug Discovery.

    PubMed

    Pedro, Liliana; Quinn, Ronald J

    2016-01-01

    The advent of native mass spectrometry (MS) in 1990 led to the development of new mass spectrometry instrumentation and methodologies for the analysis of noncovalent protein-ligand complexes. Native MS has matured to become a fast, simple, highly sensitive and automatable technique with well-established utility for fragment-based drug discovery (FBDD). Native MS has the capability to directly detect weak ligand binding to proteins, to determine stoichiometry, relative or absolute binding affinities and specificities. Native MS can be used to delineate ligand-binding sites, to elucidate mechanisms of cooperativity and to study the thermodynamics of binding. This review highlights key attributes of native MS for FBDD campaigns. PMID:27483215

  20. Regenerative Medicine: Transforming the Drug Discovery and Development Paradigm

    PubMed Central

    Karathanasis, Sotirios K.

    2014-01-01

    Despite the explosion of knowledge in basic biological processes controlling tissue regeneration and the growing interest in repairing/replacing diseased tissues and organs through various approaches (e.g., small and large molecule therapeutics, stem cell injection, tissue engineering), the pharmaceutical industry (pharma) has been reluctant to fully adopt these technologies into the traditional drug discovery and research and development (R&D) process. In this article, I discuss knowledge-base gaps and other possible factors that may delay full incorporation of these innovations in pharma R&D. I hope that this discussion will illuminate key issues that currently limit synergistic relationships between pharma and academic institutions and may even stimulate initiation of such collaborative research. PMID:25085955

  1. Droplet-based microfluidics: enabling impact on drug discovery.

    PubMed

    Dressler, Oliver J; Maceiczyk, Richard M; Chang, Soo-Ik; deMello, Andrew J

    2014-04-01

    Over the past two decades, the application of microengineered systems in the chemical and biological sciences has transformed the way in which high-throughput experimentation is performed. The ability to fabricate complex microfluidic architectures has allowed scientists to create new experimental formats for processing ultra-small analytical volumes in short periods and with high efficiency. The development of such microfluidic systems has been driven by a range of fundamental features that accompany miniaturization. These include the ability to handle small sample volumes, ultra-low fabrication costs, reduced analysis times, enhanced operational flexibility, facile automation, and the ability to integrate functional components within complex analytical schemes. Herein we discuss the impact of microfluidics in the area of high-throughput screening and drug discovery and highlight some of the most pertinent studies in the recent literature.

  2. A practical drug discovery project at the undergraduate level.

    PubMed

    Fray, M Jonathan; Macdonald, Simon J F; Baldwin, Ian R; Barton, Nick; Brown, Jack; Campbell, Ian B; Churcher, Ian; Coe, Diane M; Cooper, Anthony W J; Craven, Andrew P; Fisher, Gail; Inglis, Graham G A; Kelly, Henry A; Liddle, John; Maxwell, Aoife C; Patel, Vipulkumar K; Swanson, Stephen; Wellaway, Natalie

    2013-12-01

    In this article, we describe a practical drug discovery project for third-year undergraduates. No previous knowledge of medicinal chemistry is assumed. Initial lecture workshops cover the basic principles; then students, in teams, seek to improve the profile of a weakly potent, insoluble phosphatidylinositide 3-kinase delta (PI3Kδ) inhibitor (1) through compound array design, molecular modelling, screening data analysis and the synthesis of target compounds in the laboratory. The project benefits from significant industrial support, including lectures, student mentoring and consumables. The aim is to make the learning experience as close as possible to real-life industrial situations. In total, 48 target compounds were prepared, the best of which (5b, 5j, 6b and 6ap) improved the potency and aqueous solubility of the lead compound (1) by 100-1000 fold and ≥tenfold, respectively.

  3. Activity cliffs in drug discovery: Dr Jekyll or Mr Hyde?

    PubMed

    Cruz-Monteagudo, Maykel; Medina-Franco, José L; Pérez-Castillo, Yunierkis; Nicolotti, Orazio; Cordeiro, M Natália D S; Borges, Fernanda

    2014-08-01

    The impact activity cliffs have on drug discovery is double-edged. For instance, whereas medicinal chemists can take advantage of regions in chemical space rich in activity cliffs, QSAR practitioners need to escape from such regions. The influence of activity cliffs in medicinal chemistry applications is extensively documented. However, the 'dark side' of activity cliffs (i.e. their detrimental effect on the development of predictive machine learning algorithms) has been understudied. Similarly, limited amounts of work have been devoted to propose potential solutions to the drawbacks of activity cliffs in similarity-based approaches. In this review, the duality of activity cliffs in medicinal chemistry and computational approaches is addressed, with emphasis on the rationale and potential solutions for handling the 'ugly face' of activity cliffs. PMID:24560935

  4. Utilizing diversity-oriented synthesis in antimicrobial drug discovery.

    PubMed

    Comer, Eamon; Duvall, Jeremy R; duPont Lee, Maurice

    2014-01-01

    The development of resistance to existing antimicrobials has created a threat to human health that is not being addressed through our current drug pipeline. Limitations with the use of commercial vendor libraries and natural products have created a need for new types of small molecules to be screened in antimicrobial assays. Diversity oriented synthesis (DOS) is a strategy for the efficient generation of compound collections with a high degree of structural diversity. Diversity-oriented synthesis molecules occupy the middle ground of both complexity and efficiency of synthesis between natural products and commercial libraries. In this review we focus upon the use of diversity-oriented synthesis compound collections for the discovery of new antimicrobial agents. PMID:25495985

  5. Activity cliffs in drug discovery: Dr Jekyll or Mr Hyde?

    PubMed

    Cruz-Monteagudo, Maykel; Medina-Franco, José L; Pérez-Castillo, Yunierkis; Nicolotti, Orazio; Cordeiro, M Natália D S; Borges, Fernanda

    2014-08-01

    The impact activity cliffs have on drug discovery is double-edged. For instance, whereas medicinal chemists can take advantage of regions in chemical space rich in activity cliffs, QSAR practitioners need to escape from such regions. The influence of activity cliffs in medicinal chemistry applications is extensively documented. However, the 'dark side' of activity cliffs (i.e. their detrimental effect on the development of predictive machine learning algorithms) has been understudied. Similarly, limited amounts of work have been devoted to propose potential solutions to the drawbacks of activity cliffs in similarity-based approaches. In this review, the duality of activity cliffs in medicinal chemistry and computational approaches is addressed, with emphasis on the rationale and potential solutions for handling the 'ugly face' of activity cliffs.

  6. AutoDrug: fully automated macromolecular crystallography workflows for fragment-based drug discovery

    SciTech Connect

    Tsai, Yingssu; McPhillips, Scott E.; González, Ana; McPhillips, Timothy M.; Zinn, Daniel; Cohen, Aina E.; Feese, Michael D.; Bushnell, David; Tiefenbrunn, Theresa; Stout, C. David; Ludaescher, Bertram; Hedman, Britt; Hodgson, Keith O.; Soltis, S. Michael

    2013-05-01

    New software has been developed for automating the experimental and data-processing stages of fragment-based drug discovery at a macromolecular crystallography beamline. A new workflow-automation framework orchestrates beamline-control and data-analysis software while organizing results from multiple samples. AutoDrug is software based upon the scientific workflow paradigm that integrates the Stanford Synchrotron Radiation Lightsource macromolecular crystallography beamlines and third-party processing software to automate the crystallography steps of the fragment-based drug-discovery process. AutoDrug screens a cassette of fragment-soaked crystals, selects crystals for data collection based on screening results and user-specified criteria and determines optimal data-collection strategies. It then collects and processes diffraction data, performs molecular replacement using provided models and detects electron density that is likely to arise from bound fragments. All processes are fully automated, i.e. are performed without user interaction or supervision. Samples can be screened in groups corresponding to particular proteins, crystal forms and/or soaking conditions. A single AutoDrug run is only limited by the capacity of the sample-storage dewar at the beamline: currently 288 samples. AutoDrug was developed in conjunction with RestFlow, a new scientific workflow-automation framework. RestFlow simplifies the design of AutoDrug by managing the flow of data and the organization of results and by orchestrating the execution of computational pipeline steps. It also simplifies the execution and interaction of third-party programs and the beamline-control system. Modeling AutoDrug as a scientific workflow enables multiple variants that meet the requirements of different user groups to be developed and supported. A workflow tailored to mimic the crystallography stages comprising the drug-discovery pipeline of CoCrystal Discovery Inc. has been deployed and successfully

  7. DenguePredict: An Integrated Drug Repositioning Approach towards Drug Discovery for Dengue

    PubMed Central

    Wang, QuanQiu; Xu, Rong

    2015-01-01

    Dengue is a viral disease of expanding global incidence without cures. Here we present a drug repositioning system (DenguePredict) leveraging upon a unique drug treatment database and vast amounts of disease- and drug-related data. We first constructed a large-scale genetic disease network with enriched dengue genetics data curated from biomedical literature. We applied a network-based ranking algorithm to find dengue-related diseases from the disease network. We then developed a novel algorithm to prioritize FDA-approved drugs from dengue-related diseases to treat dengue. When tested in a de-novo validation setting, DenguePredict found the only two drugs tested in clinical trials for treating dengue and ranked them highly: chloroquine ranked at top 0.96% and ivermectin at top 22.75%. We showed that drugs targeting immune systems and arachidonic acid metabolism-related apoptotic pathways might represent innovative drugs to treat dengue. In summary, DenguePredict, by combining comprehensive disease- and drug-related data and novel algorithms, may greatly facilitate drug discovery for dengue. PMID:26958268

  8. Current approaches for the discovery of drugs that deter substance and drug abuse

    PubMed Central

    Yasgar, Adam; Simeonov, Anton

    2015-01-01

    Introduction Much has been presented and debated on the topic of drug abuse and its multidimensional nature, including the role of society and its customs and laws, economical factors, and the magnitude and nature of the burden. Given the complex nature of the receptors and pathways implicated in regulation of the cognitive and behavioral processes associated with addiction, a large number of molecular targets have been interrogated during recent years to discover starting points for development of small molecule interventions. Areas covered This review describes recent developments in the field of early drug discovery for drug abuse interventions, with a special emphasis on advances published during the 2012-2014 period. Expert Opinion Technologically, the processes/platforms utilized in drug abuse drug discovery are nearly identical to those used in the other disease areas. A key complicating factor in drug abuse research is the enormous biological complexity surrounding the brain processes involved and the associated difficulty in finding “good” targets and achieving exquisite selectivity of treatment agents. While tremendous progress has been made during recent years to use the power of high-throughput technologies to discover proof-of-principle molecules for many new targets, next-generation models will be especially important in this field; examples include seeking advantageous drug-drug combinations, use of automated whole-animal behavioral screening systems, advancing our understanding of the role of epigenetics in drug addiction, and the employment of organoid-level 3D test platforms (also referred to as tissue-chip or organs-on-chip). PMID:25251069

  9. Influence of drugs of abuse and alcohol upon patients admitted to acute psychiatric wards: physician's assessment compared to blood drug concentrations.

    PubMed

    Mordal, Jon; Medhus, Sigrid; Holm, Bjørn; Mørland, Jørg; Bramness, Jørgen G

    2013-06-01

    In acute psychiatric services, rapid and accurate detection of psychoactive substance intake may be required for appropriate diagnosis and intervention. The aim of this study was to investigate the relationship between (a) drug influence as assessed by physicians and (b) blood drug concentrations among patients admitted to acute psychiatric wards. We also explored the possible effects of age, sex, and psychotic symptoms on physician's assessment of drug influence. In a cross-sectional study, the sample comprised 271 consecutive admissions from 2 acute psychiatric wards. At admission, the physician on call performed an overall judgment of drug influence. Psychotic symptoms were assessed with the positive subscale of the Positive and Negative Syndrome Scale. Blood samples were screened for a wide range of psychoactive substances, and quantitative results were used to calculate blood drug concentration scores. Patients were judged as being under the influence of drugs and/or alcohol in 28% of the 271 admissions. Psychoactive substances were detected in 56% of the blood samples. Altogether, 15 different substances were found; up to 8 substances were found in samples from 1 patient. Markedly elevated blood drug concentration scores were estimated for 15% of the patients. Physician's assessment was positively related to the blood drug concentration scores (r = 0.52; P < 0.001), to symptoms of excitement, and to the detection of alcohol, cannabis, and amphetamines. The study demonstrates the major impact of alcohol and drugs in acute psychiatric settings and illustrates the challenging nature of the initial clinical assessment.

  10. Discovery of Anthelmintic Drug Targets and Drugs Using Chokepoints in Nematode Metabolic Pathways

    PubMed Central

    Taylor, Christina M.; Wang, Qi; Rosa, Bruce A.; Huang, Stanley Ching-Cheng; Powell, Kerrie; Schedl, Tim; Pearce, Edward J.; Abubucker, Sahar; Mitreva, Makedonka

    2013-01-01

    Parasitic roundworm infections plague more than 2 billion people (1/3 of humanity) and cause drastic losses in crops and livestock. New anthelmintic drugs are urgently needed as new drug resistance and environmental concerns arise. A “chokepoint reaction” is defined as a reaction that either consumes a unique substrate or produces a unique product. A chokepoint analysis provides a systematic method of identifying novel potential drug targets. Chokepoint enzymes were identified in the genomes of 10 nematode species, and the intersection and union of all chokepoint enzymes were found. By studying and experimentally testing available compounds known to target proteins orthologous to nematode chokepoint proteins in public databases, this study uncovers features of chokepoints that make them successful drug targets. Chemogenomic screening was performed on drug-like compounds from public drug databases to find existing compounds that target homologs of nematode chokepoints. The compounds were prioritized based on chemical properties frequently found in successful drugs and were experimentally tested using Caenorhabditis elegans. Several drugs that are already known anthelmintic drugs and novel candidate targets were identified. Seven of the compounds were tested in Caenorhabditis elegans and three yielded a detrimental phenotype. One of these three drug-like compounds, Perhexiline, also yielded a deleterious effect in Haemonchus contortus and Onchocerca lienalis, two nematodes with divergent forms of parasitism. Perhexiline, known to affect the fatty acid oxidation pathway in mammals, caused a reduction in oxygen consumption rates in C. elegans and genome-wide gene expression profiles provided an additional confirmation of its mode of action. Computational modeling of Perhexiline and its target provided structural insights regarding its binding mode and specificity. Our lists of prioritized drug targets and drug-like compounds have potential to expedite the discovery

  11. A decade from discovery to therapy: Lingo-1, the dark horse in neurological and psychiatric disorders.

    PubMed

    Andrews, Jessica L; Fernandez-Enright, Francesca

    2015-09-01

    Leucine-rich repeat and immunoglobulin domain-containing protein (Lingo-1) is a potent negative regulator of neuron and oligodendrocyte survival, neurite extension, axon regeneration, oligodendrocyte differentiation, axonal myelination and functional recovery; all processes highly implicated in numerous brain-related functions. Although playing a major role in developmental brain functions, the potential application of Lingo-1 as a therapeutic target for the treatment of neurological disorders has so far been under-estimated. A number of preclinical studies have shown that various methods of antagonizing Lingo-1 results in neuronal and oligodendroglial survival, axonal growth and remyelination; however to date literature has only detailed applications of Lingo-1 targeted therapeutics with a focus primarily on myelination disorders such as multiple sclerosis and spinal cord injury; omitting important information regarding Lingo-1 signaling co-factors. Here, we provide for the first time a complete and thorough review of the implications of Lingo-1 signaling in a wide range of neurological and psychiatric disorders, and critically examine its potential as a novel therapeutic target for these disorders. PMID:26143511

  12. Smoking, alcohol consumption, and drug use among adolescents with psychiatric disorders compared with a population based sample.

    PubMed

    Mangerud, Wenche Langfjord; Bjerkeset, Ottar; Holmen, Turid Lingaas; Lydersen, Stian; Indredavik, Marit Sæbø

    2014-10-01

    This study investigated frequencies of smoking, alcohol use, and illicit drug use by diagnostic category in 566 adolescent psychiatric patients, comparing this sample with 8173 adolescents from the general population in Norway who completed the Young-HUNT 3 survey. Frequencies of current alcohol use were high in both samples but were lower among psychiatric patients. Compared with adolescents in the general population, adolescents in the clinical sample had a higher prevalence of current smoking and over four times higher odds of having tried illicit drugs. In the clinical sample, those with mood disorders reported the highest frequencies of smoking, alcohol use, and illicit drug use, whereas those with autism spectrum disorders reported the lowest frequencies. Our results show an increased prevalence of risky health behaviors among adolescents with psychiatric disorders compared with the general population. The awareness of disorder-specific patterns of smoking and substance use may guide preventive measures.

  13. Homology modeling a fast tool for drug discovery: current perspectives.

    PubMed

    Vyas, V K; Ukawala, R D; Ghate, M; Chintha, C

    2012-01-01

    Major goal of structural biology involve formation of protein-ligand complexes; in which the protein molecules act energetically in the course of binding. Therefore, perceptive of protein-ligand interaction will be very important for structure based drug design. Lack of knowledge of 3D structures has hindered efforts to understand the binding specificities of ligands with protein. With increasing in modeling software and the growing number of known protein structures, homology modeling is rapidly becoming the method of choice for obtaining 3D coordinates of proteins. Homology modeling is a representation of the similarity of environmental residues at topologically corresponding positions in the reference proteins. In the absence of experimental data, model building on the basis of a known 3D structure of a homologous protein is at present the only reliable method to obtain the structural information. Knowledge of the 3D structures of proteins provides invaluable insights into the molecular basis of their functions. The recent advances in homology modeling, particularly in detecting and aligning sequences with template structures, distant homologues, modeling of loops and side chains as well as detecting errors in a model contributed to consistent prediction of protein structure, which was not possible even several years ago. This review focused on the features and a role of homology modeling in predicting protein structure and described current developments in this field with victorious applications at the different stages of the drug design and discovery.

  14. Applications of Fiberoptics-Based Nanosensors to Drug Discovery

    PubMed Central

    Vo-Dinh, Tuan; Scaffidi, Jonathan; Gregas, Molly; Zhang, Yan; Seewaldt, Victoria

    2013-01-01

    Background Fiber-optic nanosensors are fabricated by heating and pulling optical fibers to yield sub-micron diameter tips, and have been used for in vitro analysis of individual living mammalian cells. Immobilization of bioreceptors (e.g., antibodies, peptides, DNA, etc) selective to target analyte molecules of interest provides molecular specificity. Excitation light can be launched into the fiber, and the resulting evanescent field at the tip of the nanofiber can be used to excite target molecules bound to the bioreceptor molecules. The fluorescence or surface-enhanced Raman scattering produced by the analyte molecules is detected using an ultra-sensitive photodetector. Objective This article provides an overview of the development and application of fiber-optic nanosensors for drug discovery. Conclusions The nanosensors provide minimally invasive tools to probe sub-cellular compartments inside single living cells for health effect studies (e.g., detection of benzopyrene adducts) and medical applications (e.g., monitoring of apoptosis in cells treated with anti-cancer drugs). PMID:23496274

  15. Methodological advances in drug discovery for Chagas disease

    PubMed Central

    Bustamante, Juan M.; Tarleton, Rick L.

    2011-01-01

    Introduction Chagas disease is the highest impact human infectious disease in Latin America, and the leading worldwide cause of myocarditis. Despite the availability of several compounds that have demonstrated efficacy in limiting the effects of T. cruzi, these compounds are rarely used due to their variable efficacy, substantial side effects and the lack of methodologies for confirming their effectiveness. Furthermore, the development of more efficacious compounds is challenged by limitations of systems for assessing drug efficacy in vitro and in vivo. Areas covered Herein, the authors review the development of Chagas disease drug discovery methodology, focusing on recent developments in high throughput screening, in vivo testing methods and assessments of efficacy in humans. Particularly, this review documents the significant progress that has taken place over the last 5 years that have paved the way for both target-focused and high-throughput screens of compound libraries. Expert opinion The tools for in vitro and in vivo screening of anti-T. cruzi compounds have improved dramatically in the last few years and there are now a number of excellent in vivo testing models available; this somewhat alleviates the bottleneck issue of quickly and definitively demonstrating in vivo efficacy in a relevant host animal system. These advances emphasize the potential for additional progress resulting in new treatments for Chagas disease in the coming years. That being said, national and international agencies must improve the coordination of research and development efforts in addition to cultivating the funding sources for the development of these new treatments. PMID:21712965

  16. Drug-drug Interaction Discovery Using Abstraction Networks for “National Drug File – Reference Terminology” Chemical Ingredients

    PubMed Central

    Ochs, Christopher; Zheng, Ling; Gu, Huanying; Perl, Yehoshua; Geller, James; Kapusnik-Uner, Joan; Zakharchenko, Aleksandr

    2015-01-01

    The National Drug File – Reference Terminology (NDF-RT) is a large and complex drug terminology. NDF-RT provides important information about clinical drugs, e.g., their chemical ingredients, mechanisms of action, dosage form and physiological effects. Within NDF-RT such information is represented using tens of thousands of roles. It is difficult to comprehend large, complex terminologies like NDF-RT. In previous studies, we introduced abstraction networks to summarize the content and structure of terminologies. In this paper, we introduce the Ingredient Abstraction Network to summarize NDF-RT’s Chemical Ingredients and their associated drugs. Additionally, we introduce the Aggregate Ingredient Abstraction Network, for controlling the granularity of summarization provided by the Ingredient Abstraction Network. The Ingredient Abstraction Network is used to support the discovery of new candidate drug-drug interactions (DDIs) not appearing in First Databank, Inc.’s DDI knowledgebase. PMID:26958234

  17. Methodologies for investigating drug metabolism at the early drug discovery stage: prediction of hepatic drug clearance and P450 contribution.

    PubMed

    Emoto, Chie; Murayama, Norie; Rostami-Hodjegan, Amin; Yamazaki, Hiroshi

    2010-10-01

    The attrition rate in drug development is being reduced by continuous advances in science and technology introduced by various academic institutions and pharmaceutical companies. This has been certainly noticeable in reducing the frequency with which unfavorable absorption, distribution, metabolism, and elimination (ADME) characteristics of any candidate drug causes failure in clinical development. Nonetheless, it is important that the objectives in reducing attrition during later stages of development are matched by information generated in the earliest stage of discovery. In this review, we summarize the methodologies employed during the early stages of drug discovery and discuss new findings in the areas of (1) drug metabolism enzymes, (2) the contribution of cytochrome P450 enzymes (P450, CYP) to hepatic metabolism, (3) prediction of hepatic intrinsic clearance, (4) reaction phenotyping, and (5) the metabolic differences between highly homologous enzymes such as CYP3A4 and CYP3A5. The total contribution of P450 and UDP-glucuronosyltransferases to drug metabolism is reported to be more than 80%; therefore, glucuronidation is increasingly recognized as an important clearance pathway in addition to that of P450 enzymes. When estimating the contribution of P450, interpreting the results of inhibition studies using a single P450 inhibitor can lead to false conclusions. For instance, 1-aminobenzotriazole and SKF-525A have a varying range of IC(50) values for inhibition of drug exidation-reaction by different CYP450 enzymes. There are disparities between methodologies at early stage drug discovery and late stage development. For example, although the drug depletion approach for the prediction of hepatic intrinsic clearance may not be desirable at late stages of development, it is suitable at the early drug discovery stage since kinetic characterization and measurement of specific drug metabolites are not required. Data from protein binding assays in plasma and

  18. Evaluation of a urine on-site drugs of abuse screening test in patients admitted to a psychiatric emergency unit.

    PubMed

    Bagøien, Gunnhild; Morken, Gunnar; Zahlsen, Kolbjørn; Aamo, Trond; Spigset, Olav

    2009-06-01

    The objective of this study was to characterize the usefulness and reliability of a commonly used urinary on-site drugs of abuse screening test device when used routinely at admittances to a psychiatric emergency unit. Urine samples from 262 emergency psychiatric admittances representing 217 patients were analyzed by a commercially available on-site test for the detection of amphetamines, benzodiazepines, cannabis, cocaine, and opiates in urine. The samples were first screened by nurses at the psychiatric department, thereafter by 2 technicians at the laboratory, and finally, analyzed by liquid chromatography/mass spectrometry. Results of 45.8% of the screening tests were true negative for all 5 drugs/drug groups tested, whereas those of 29.4% were true positive for 1 or several drugs/drug groups and true negative for the others. Thus, in total, 75.2% were correct for all 5 drugs/drug groups. In general, the sensitivities (42.9%-90.0% for the various drug groups) were lower than the specificities (92.7%-100.0%). The accuracies were 86.3% for benzodiazepines, 92.4% for cannabis, 94.7% for opiates, and 97.0% for amphetamines. No cocaine was found in any of the samples. For cannabis, the accuracy was higher among the laboratory technicians than among the nurses. The results from on-site screening testing should not be considered as the final conclusion on the intake of drugs of abuse but must be interpreted with caution.

  19. East-Side story: the standardisation of psychotropic drugs at the Charité Psychiatric Clinic, 1955-1970.

    PubMed

    Balz, Viola; Hoheisel, Matthias

    2011-12-01

    The present article illustrates the history of psychotropic drugs introduced in the German Democratic Republic (GDR) from 1945 onwards. We begin by examining the introduction of an anti-depressant and a tranquilizer at the university psychiatric clinic, Charité, in East Berlin. On the basis of patient files, we consider the monitoring routines, altered by the use of psychotropic drugs, and the difficulties that arose when these routines were translated into existing research programs. In the 1960s, attempts to evaluate the psychiatric practice were based on psychopathology whereas at the end of the 1960s there was a shift to "target symptoms".

  20. Predictive value of isolated epileptiform discharges for a favorable therapeutic response to antiepileptic drugs in nonepileptic psychiatric patients.

    PubMed

    Boutros, Nash N; Kirollos, Sandra B; Pogarell, Oliver; Gallinat, Jürgen

    2014-02-01

    The efficacy of antiepileptic drugs (AEDs) in treating behavioral symptoms in nonepileptic psychiatric patients with abnormal EEGs is currently unknown. Although isolated epileptiform discharges have been reported in many psychiatric conditions, they are most commonly observed in patients with aggression, panic, or autistic spectrum disorders. The literature search was guided by 3 criteria: (1) studies had patients who did not experience seizures, (2) patients had EEGs, and (3) an AED was administered. Most important finding is that the number of "controlled" studies was extremely small. Overall, most reports suggest that the use of an AED can be associated with clinical and, at times, improved EEG abnormalities. Additionally, six controlled studies were found for other psychiatric disorders, such as learning disabilities with similar results. Overall, the use of anticonvulsants to treat nonepileptic psychiatric patients needs further controlled studies to better define indications, adequate EEG work-up, best AED to be used, and optimal durations of treatment attempts.

  1. Characteristics of psychopathology and the relationship between routes of drug administration and psychiatric symptoms in heroin addicts.

    PubMed

    Wang, Qing-Liang; Liu, Zhi-Min

    2012-01-01

    The objective of this study was to explore the characteristics of comorbid psychiatric symptoms and the relationship between different routes of drug administration and psychiatric symptoms. Five hundred and nine heroin addicts were studied in Drug Detoxification and Rehabilitation Centers in Yunnan and Heilongjiang provinces of China. The measure instrument, including demographic characteristics, history of drug abuse, and the Symptom Checklist-90 (SCL-90) scale (Chinese version), was administered to eligible heroin addicts. Among the subjects, comorbid psychopathology conditions were more severe on all dimensions of SCL-90 comparing with normal adults and the average score of Depression was highest among the 9 dimensions in heroin addicts; psychiatric symptoms were more severe in heroin injecting group than in "chasing the dragon" group and only the difference in Obsessive-Compulsive was significant, but more significant differences were found between snorting heroin addicts and chasing or injecting heroin addicts, and the average score of each dimension of SCL-90 was higher in the snorting group than in the other 2 groups. The reasons of the results and meaning for the present study are discussed. In summary, comorbid psychiatric symptoms in the heroin addicts were very common and severe and their severity varied with different routes of drug administration, suggesting that routes of drug administration should be considered as an important risk factor to mental health of heroin addicts.

  2. Scientometrics of drug discovery efforts: pain-related molecular targets.

    PubMed

    Kissin, Igor

    2015-01-01

    The aim of this study was to make a scientometric assessment of drug discovery efforts centered on pain-related molecular targets. The following scientometric indices were used: the popularity index, representing the share of articles (or patents) on a specific topic among all articles (or patents) on pain over the same 5-year period; the index of change, representing the change in the number of articles (or patents) on a topic from one 5-year period to the next; the index of expectations, representing the ratio of the number of all types of articles on a topic in the top 20 journals relative to the number of articles in all (>5,000) biomedical journals covered by PubMed over a 5-year period; the total number of articles representing Phase I-III trials of investigational drugs over a 5-year period; and the trial balance index, a ratio of Phase I-II publications to Phase III publications. Articles (PubMed database) and patents (US Patent and Trademark Office database) on 17 topics related to pain mechanisms were assessed during six 5-year periods from 1984 to 2013. During the most recent 5-year period (2009-2013), seven of 17 topics have demonstrated high research activity (purinergic receptors, serotonin, transient receptor potential channels, cytokines, gamma aminobutyric acid, glutamate, and protein kinases). However, even with these seven topics, the index of expectations decreased or did not change compared with the 2004-2008 period. In addition, publications representing Phase I-III trials of investigational drugs (2009-2013) did not indicate great enthusiasm on the part of the pharmaceutical industry regarding drugs specifically designed for treatment of pain. A promising development related to the new tool of molecular targeting, ie, monoclonal antibodies, for pain treatment has not yet resulted in real success. This approach has not yet demonstrated clinical effectiveness (at least with nerve growth factor) much beyond conventional analgesics, when its

  3. Scientometrics of drug discovery efforts: pain-related molecular targets

    PubMed Central

    Kissin, Igor

    2015-01-01

    The aim of this study was to make a scientometric assessment of drug discovery efforts centered on pain-related molecular targets. The following scientometric indices were used: the popularity index, representing the share of articles (or patents) on a specific topic among all articles (or patents) on pain over the same 5-year period; the index of change, representing the change in the number of articles (or patents) on a topic from one 5-year period to the next; the index of expectations, representing the ratio of the number of all types of articles on a topic in the top 20 journals relative to the number of articles in all (>5,000) biomedical journals covered by PubMed over a 5-year period; the total number of articles representing Phase I–III trials of investigational drugs over a 5-year period; and the trial balance index, a ratio of Phase I–II publications to Phase III publications. Articles (PubMed database) and patents (US Patent and Trademark Office database) on 17 topics related to pain mechanisms were assessed during six 5-year periods from 1984 to 2013. During the most recent 5-year period (2009–2013), seven of 17 topics have demonstrated high research activity (purinergic receptors, serotonin, transient receptor potential channels, cytokines, gamma aminobutyric acid, glutamate, and protein kinases). However, even with these seven topics, the index of expectations decreased or did not change compared with the 2004–2008 period. In addition, publications representing Phase I–III trials of investigational drugs (2009–2013) did not indicate great enthusiasm on the part of the pharmaceutical industry regarding drugs specifically designed for treatment of pain. A promising development related to the new tool of molecular targeting, ie, monoclonal antibodies, for pain treatment has not yet resulted in real success. This approach has not yet demonstrated clinical effectiveness (at least with nerve growth factor) much beyond conventional analgesics

  4. Scientometrics of drug discovery efforts: pain-related molecular targets.

    PubMed

    Kissin, Igor

    2015-01-01

    The aim of this study was to make a scientometric assessment of drug discovery efforts centered on pain-related molecular targets. The following scientometric indices were used: the popularity index, representing the share of articles (or patents) on a specific topic among all articles (or patents) on pain over the same 5-year period; the index of change, representing the change in the number of articles (or patents) on a topic from one 5-year period to the next; the index of expectations, representing the ratio of the number of all types of articles on a topic in the top 20 journals relative to the number of articles in all (>5,000) biomedical journals covered by PubMed over a 5-year period; the total number of articles representing Phase I-III trials of investigational drugs over a 5-year period; and the trial balance index, a ratio of Phase I-II publications to Phase III publications. Articles (PubMed database) and patents (US Patent and Trademark Office database) on 17 topics related to pain mechanisms were assessed during six 5-year periods from 1984 to 2013. During the most recent 5-year period (2009-2013), seven of 17 topics have demonstrated high research activity (purinergic receptors, serotonin, transient receptor potential channels, cytokines, gamma aminobutyric acid, glutamate, and protein kinases). However, even with these seven topics, the index of expectations decreased or did not change compared with the 2004-2008 period. In addition, publications representing Phase I-III trials of investigational drugs (2009-2013) did not indicate great enthusiasm on the part of the pharmaceutical industry regarding drugs specifically designed for treatment of pain. A promising development related to the new tool of molecular targeting, ie, monoclonal antibodies, for pain treatment has not yet resulted in real success. This approach has not yet demonstrated clinical effectiveness (at least with nerve growth factor) much beyond conventional analgesics, when its

  5. Drug discovery for Chagas disease should consider Trypanosoma cruzi strain diversity

    PubMed Central

    Zingales, Bianca; Miles, Michael A; Moraes, Carolina B; Luquetti, Alejandro; Guhl, Felipe; Schijman, Alejandro G; Ribeiro, Isabela

    2014-01-01

    This opinion piece presents an approach to standardisation of an important aspect of Chagas disease drug discovery and development: selecting Trypanosoma cruzi strains for in vitro screening. We discuss the rationale for strain selection representing T. cruzi diversity and provide recommendations on the preferred parasite stage for drug discovery, T. cruzi discrete typing units to include in the panel of strains and the number of strains/clones for primary screens and lead compounds. We also consider experimental approaches for in vitro drug assays. The Figure illustrates the current Chagas disease drug-discovery and development landscape. PMID:25317712

  6. Network-based discovery through mechanistic systems biology. Implications for applications--SMEs and drug discovery: where the action is.

    PubMed

    Benson, Neil

    2015-08-01

    Phase II attrition remains the most important challenge for drug discovery. Tackling the problem requires improved understanding of the complexity of disease biology. Systems biology approaches to this problem can, in principle, deliver this. This article reviews the reports of the application of mechanistic systems models to drug discovery questions and discusses the added value. Although we are on the journey to the virtual human, the length, path and rate of learning from this remain an open question. Success will be dependent on the will to invest and make the most of the insight generated along the way.

  7. Network-based discovery through mechanistic systems biology. Implications for applications--SMEs and drug discovery: where the action is.

    PubMed

    Benson, Neil

    2015-08-01

    Phase II attrition remains the most important challenge for drug discovery. Tackling the problem requires improved understanding of the complexity of disease biology. Systems biology approaches to this problem can, in principle, deliver this. This article reviews the reports of the application of mechanistic systems models to drug discovery questions and discusses the added value. Although we are on the journey to the virtual human, the length, path and rate of learning from this remain an open question. Success will be dependent on the will to invest and make the most of the insight generated along the way. PMID:26464089

  8. Tanzania's policy on biodiversity prospecting and drug discovery programs.

    PubMed

    Mahunnah, R L; Mshigeni, K E

    1996-04-01

    Tanzania is endowed with a rich natural resource. The biodiversity comprises over 10,000 plant species, a rich fauna and marine resources. The collection of biological resources is guided by a set of formalities, namely: (i) entry visas, (ii) research permits, (iii) designation of a relevant collaborating host institution or organization, and (iv) eventual joint field work with the collaborating host institution. A facility exists whereby an institution within the country can collaborate with a technologically developed institution or country through mutual research agreement in short and long-term programs. In such a case, Tanzanian scientists collect and export biological materials for drug testing by the collaborating partner. The research agreement is based on the understanding that benefits of the discovery are shared among all parties, namely, the host country's collaborating institution(s), government and indigenous cultures. Rules and regulations governing biodiversity prospecting fall under the categories of (a) floristic resources, (b) fauna or animal substances and (c) marine biological resources. The collection and export of CITES-listed organisms is governed by a separate policy package. Various national institutions are directly involved in overseeing the implementation of these policies. In this paper, these are reviewed to accommodate new conventions concerning research management policies on biological diversity and the sustainable utilization and conservation of these resources. PMID:9213620

  9. Animal models of skin disease for drug discovery

    PubMed Central

    Avci, Pinar; Sadasivam, Magesh; Gupta, Asheesh; De Melo, Wanessa CMA; Huang, Ying-Ying; Yin, Rui; Rakkiyappan, Chandran; Kumar, Raj; Otufowora, Ayodeji; Nyame, Theodore; Hamblin, Michael R

    2013-01-01

    Introduction Discovery of novel drugs, treatments, and testing of consumer products in the field of dermatology is a multi-billion dollar business. Due to the distressing nature of many dermatological diseases, and the enormous consumer demand for products to reverse the effects of skin photodamage, aging, and hair loss, this is a very active field. Areas covered In this paper, we will cover the use of animal models that have been reported to recapitulate to a greater or lesser extent the features of human dermatological disease. There has been a remarkable increase in the number and variety of transgenic mouse models in recent years, and the basic strategy for constructing them is outlined. Expert opinion Inflammatory and autoimmune skin diseases are all represented by a range of mouse models both transgenic and normal. Skin cancer is mainly studied in mice and fish. Wound healing is studied in a wider range of animal species, and skin infections such as acne and leprosy also have been studied in animal models. Moving to the more consumer-oriented area of dermatology, there are models for studying the harmful effect of sunlight on the skin, and testing of sunscreens, and several different animal models of hair loss or alopecia. PMID:23293893

  10. Mouse Models of Type 2 Diabetes Mellitus in Drug Discovery.

    PubMed

    Baribault, Helene

    2016-01-01

    Type 2 diabetes is a fast-growing epidemic in industrialized countries, associated with obesity, lack of physical exercise, aging, family history, and ethnic background. Diagnostic criteria are elevated fasting or postprandial blood glucose levels, a consequence of insulin resistance. Early intervention can help patients to revert the progression of the disease together with lifestyle changes or monotherapy. Systemic glucose toxicity can have devastating effects leading to pancreatic beta cell failure, blindness, nephropathy, and neuropathy, progressing to limb ulceration or even amputation. Existing treatments have numerous side effects and demonstrate variability in individual patient responsiveness. However, several emerging areas of discovery research are showing promises with the development of novel classes of antidiabetic drugs.The mouse has proven to be a reliable model for discovering and validating new treatments for type 2 diabetes mellitus. We review here commonly used methods to measure endpoints relevant to glucose metabolism which show good translatability to the diagnostic of type 2 diabetes in humans: baseline fasting glucose and insulin, glucose tolerance test, insulin sensitivity index, and body type composition. Improvements on these clinical values are essential for the progression of a novel potential therapeutic molecule through a preclinical and clinical pipeline.

  11. Robust versatile tyrosine kinase assay for HTS in drug discovery

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Deshpande, Sudhir S.; Mineyev, I.; Owicki, John C.

    1999-04-01

    A fluorescence polarization assay was developed as an alternative to the radiolabeled SPA assays currently used to monitor the activity of tyrosine kinases in drug discovery. The assay can be used with enzymes having substrate specificity similar to that of the insulin receptor, the EGF receptor and the Src kinase receptor enzymes. The assay is easy to configure in 96, 384 and 1536-well microplates in assay volumes ranging from (mu) L with minimal efforts. The reconstituted reagents are stable for up to 24 hr at ambient temperatures, thereby minimizing the need for replenishing the stock solutions during the course of a high-throughput screen. Because of the stability and equilibrium kinetics, the assay allows the user the luxury of scheduling the reading of plates any time up to 24 hr after the completion of the assay without substantial deterioration in the assay signal. The antibody and the tracer solutions can also be premixed and added as a preformed complex in a single step. The performance of the assay with the insulin receptor kinase is described. In addition, given the diversity of the substrates used in measuring the activity of different tyrosine kinases, LJL's on-going efforts to provide different antibodies of wide ranging specificity and sensitivity are described.

  12. Sexual Orientation Disparities in Psychiatric and Drug Use Disorders among a Nationally Representative Sample of Women with Alcohol Use Disorders

    PubMed Central

    Mereish, Ethan H.; Lee, Ji Hyun; Gamarel, Kristi E.; Zaller, Nickolas D.; Operario, Don

    2015-01-01

    Background and Aims Sexual minority women (SMW) are at greater risk for alcohol use disorders (AUDs) compared to heterosexual women. However, there is a dearth of research on sexual orientation disparities in co-occurring disorders among women with AUDs. We examined disparities in lifetime co-occurring psychiatric and drug use disorders among a nationally representative sample of women with lifetime AUDs. Methods Data were analyzed from the 2004–2005 (Wave 2) of the National Epidemiological Survey on Alcohol and Related Condition (NESARC), which was collected in structured diagnostic face-to-face interviews. Adult women with AUDs (N = 4,342) were included in the analyses and approximately 191 of those women self-identified as SMW. Lifetime alcohol and drug use disorders and psychiatric disorders were assessed using DSM-IV criteria. We conducted multivariate logistic regression analyses to compare SMW and heterosexual women with lifetime AUDs on lifetime psychiatric disorders and drug use disorders, while adjusting for sociodemographic variables. Findings While accounting for several covariates, SMW with lifetime AUDs were more likely than heterosexual women with lifetime AUDs to have lifetime psychiatric disorders (e.g., mood, anxiety, panic disorders) and drug use disorders (e.g., prescription drugs, cannabis use disorders). Conclusions Sexual minority women with lifetime alcohol use disorders are at heightened risk for co-occurring psychiatric and drug use disorders than heterosexual women with lifetime alcohol use disorders. The findings warrant the need for more research and empirically based interventions for the comprehensive treatment and prevention of alcohol use disorders among sexual minority women. PMID:25899096

  13. Current status and future prospects for enabling chemistry technology in the drug discovery process

    PubMed Central

    Djuric, Stevan W.; Hutchins, Charles W.; Talaty, Nari N.

    2016-01-01

    This review covers recent advances in the implementation of enabling chemistry technologies into the drug discovery process. Areas covered include parallel synthesis chemistry, high-throughput experimentation, automated synthesis and purification methods, flow chemistry methodology including photochemistry, electrochemistry, and the handling of “dangerous” reagents. Also featured are advances in the “computer-assisted drug design” area and the expanding application of novel mass spectrometry-based techniques to a wide range of drug discovery activities. PMID:27781094

  14. Stem cell models for drug discovery and toxicology studies.

    PubMed

    Liu, Wenwei; Deng, Yaguang; Liu, Ying; Gong, Wenrong; Deng, Wenbin

    2013-01-01

    Human stem cells and their derivatives could provide virtually unlimited sources of tissue for a wide range of toxicity models that could complement conventional animal models with more relevant, humanized versions. Human embryonic stem cells (hESCs) have already been proven valuable for drug/toxicity screens and mechanistic studies including analysis of disease pathway and developmental toxicity. Human-induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs), which are generated by reprogramming somatic cells back to become hESC-like cells, allow assays to be designed where the contribution of an individual's genetic background or environmental exposure history to toxicity response can be determined. Comprehensive profiling of hESC/iPSCs via genomics, proteomics, transcriptomics, and metabolomics could be used to elucidate pathway perturbations that underlie toxicity and disease, enabling the development of predictive assays for toxicity. While technological hurdles still exist for widespread use and implementation, incorporation of human stem cell based assays into drug discovery and toxicity testing offers the potential for safer, more customized medicines and more accurate risk assessment for environmental toxicants, as well as reduced costs and decreased use of animal models. We examine limitations and deficiencies of current toxicology approaches and how human stem cell based in vitro assays may overcome them. We describe how human stem cells are used for predictive toxicology. We also identify technological limitations that prevent stem cells from being integrated into standard practice, as well as new tools and technologies that may overcome them. We discuss research priorities that are most useful for transforming cell-based toxicology models into reality, and research areas in which stem cell technology could make substantial contributions to the development and implementation of stem cell based models for toxicity testing. Increased use of human in vitro models of

  15. Reality Check: What Science Has to Tell Us about Psychiatric Drugs and Their Long-Term Effects

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Whitaker, Robert B.

    2007-01-01

    Three decades of research into the "chemical imbalance" theory of mental disorders failed to pan out. The biological causes of most mental disorders remain unknown. However, it is now well understood that psychiatric drugs work by perturbing neurotransmitter systems, and that the brain, in response to this blocking of normal function, undergoes a…

  16. Psychiatric Disorders of Children Living with Drug-Abusing, Alcohol-Abusing, and Non-Substance-Abusing Fathers.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Kelley, Michelle L.; Fals-Stewart, William

    2004-01-01

    Objective: The present study examined lifetime psychiatric disorders and current emotional and behavioral problems of 8- to 12-year-old children living with drug-abusing (DA) fathers compared to children living in demographically matched homes with alcohol-abusing (AA) or non-substance-abusing fathers. Method: Children's lifetime psychiatric…

  17. Crystal structures of 11β-hydroxysteroid dehydrogenase type 1 and their use in drug discovery

    PubMed Central

    Thomas, Mark P; Potter, Barry VL

    2014-01-01

    Cortisol is synthesized by 11β-hydroxysteroid dehydrogenase type 1, inhibitors of which may treat disease associated with excessive cortisol levels. The crystal structures of 11β-hydroxysteroid dehydrogenase type 1 that have been released may aid drug discovery. The crystal structures have been analyzed in terms of the interactions between the protein and the ligands. Despite a variety of structurally different inhibitors the crystal structures of the proteins are quite similar. However, the differences are significant for drug discovery. The crystal structures can be of use in drug discovery, but care needs to be taken when selecting structures for use in virtual screening and ligand docking. PMID:21446847

  18. Open Drug Discovery Teams: A Chemistry Mobile App for Collaboration.

    PubMed

    Ekins, Sean; Clark, Alex M; Williams, Antony J

    2012-08-01

    The Open Drug Discovery Teams (ODDT) project provides a mobile app primarily intended as a research topic aggregator of predominantly open science data collected from various sources on the internet. It exists to facilitate interdisciplinary teamwork and to relieve the user from data overload, delivering access to information that is highly relevant and focused on their topic areas of interest. Research topics include areas of chemistry and adjacent molecule-oriented biomedical sciences, with an emphasis on those which are most amenable to open research at present. These include rare and neglected diseases, and precompetitive and public-good initiatives such as green chemistry. The ODDT project uses a free mobile app as user entry point. The app has a magazine-like interface, and server-side infrastructure for hosting chemistry-related data as well as value added services. The project is open to participation from anyone and provides the ability for users to make annotations and assertions, thereby contributing to the collective value of the data to the engaged community. Much of the content is derived from public sources, but the platform is also amenable to commercial data input. The technology could also be readily used in-house by organizations as a research aggregator that could integrate internal and external science and discussion. The infrastructure for the app is currently based upon the Twitter API as a useful proof of concept for a real time source of publicly generated content. This could be extended further by accessing other APIs providing news and data feeds of relevance to a particular area of interest. As the project evolves, social networking features will be developed for organizing participants into teams, with various forms of communication and content management possible.

  19. Understanding mechanisms of toxicity: Insights from drug discovery research

    SciTech Connect

    Houck, Keith A. Kavlock, Robert J.

    2008-03-01

    Toxicology continues to rely heavily on use of animal testing for prediction of potential for toxicity in humans. Where mechanisms of toxicity have been elucidated, for example endocrine disruption by xenoestrogens binding to the estrogen receptor, in vitro assays have been developed as surrogate assays for toxicity prediction. This mechanistic information can be combined with other data such as exposure levels to inform a risk assessment for the chemical. However, there remains a paucity of such mechanistic assays due at least in part to lack of methods to determine specific mechanisms of toxicity for many toxicants. A means to address this deficiency lies in utilization of a vast repertoire of tools developed by the drug discovery industry for interrogating the bioactivity of chemicals. This review describes the application of high-throughput screening assays as experimental tools for profiling chemicals for potential for toxicity and understanding underlying mechanisms. The accessibility of broad panels of assays covering an array of protein families permits evaluation of chemicals for their ability to directly modulate many potential targets of toxicity. In addition, advances in cell-based screening have yielded tools capable of reporting the effects of chemicals on numerous critical cell signaling pathways and cell health parameters. Novel, more complex cellular systems are being used to model mammalian tissues and the consequences of compound treatment. Finally, high-throughput technology is being applied to model organism screens to understand mechanisms of toxicity. However, a number of formidable challenges to these methods remain to be overcome before they are widely applicable. Integration of successful approaches will contribute towards building a systems approach to toxicology that will provide mechanistic understanding of the effects of chemicals on biological systems and aid in rationale risk assessments.

  20. Open Drug Discovery Teams: A Chemistry Mobile App for Collaboration.

    PubMed

    Ekins, Sean; Clark, Alex M; Williams, Antony J

    2012-08-01

    The Open Drug Discovery Teams (ODDT) project provides a mobile app primarily intended as a research topic aggregator of predominantly open science data collected from various sources on the internet. It exists to facilitate interdisciplinary teamwork and to relieve the user from data overload, delivering access to information that is highly relevant and focused on their topic areas of interest. Research topics include areas of chemistry and adjacent molecule-oriented biomedical sciences, with an emphasis on those which are most amenable to open research at present. These include rare and neglected diseases, and precompetitive and public-good initiatives such as green chemistry. The ODDT project uses a free mobile app as user entry point. The app has a magazine-like interface, and server-side infrastructure for hosting chemistry-related data as well as value added services. The project is open to participation from anyone and provides the ability for users to make annotations and assertions, thereby contributing to the collective value of the data to the engaged community. Much of the content is derived from public sources, but the platform is also amenable to commercial data input. The technology could also be readily used in-house by organizations as a research aggregator that could integrate internal and external science and discussion. The infrastructure for the app is currently based upon the Twitter API as a useful proof of concept for a real time source of publicly generated content. This could be extended further by accessing other APIs providing news and data feeds of relevance to a particular area of interest. As the project evolves, social networking features will be developed for organizing participants into teams, with various forms of communication and content management possible. PMID:23198003

  1. High-content analysis in preclinical drug discovery.

    PubMed

    Denner, Philip; Schmalowsky, Janine; Prechtl, Stefan

    2008-03-01

    High-Content Analysis (HCA) has developed into an established tool and is used in a wide range of academic laboratories and pharmaceutical research groups. HCA is now routinely proving to be effective in providing functionally relevant results. It is essential to select the appropriate HCA application with regard to the targeted compound's cellular function. The cellular impact and compound specificity as revealed by HCA analysis facilitates reaching definitive conclusions at an early stage in the drug discovery process. This technology therefore has the potential to substantially improve the efficiency of pharmaceutical research. Recent advances in fluorescent probes have significantly boosted the success of HCA. Auto-fluorescent proteins which minimally hinder the functioning of the living cell have been playing a decisive role in cell biology research. For companies the severely restricted license conditions regarding auto-fluorescent proteins hamper their general use in pharmaceutical research. This has opened the field for other solutions such as self-labeling protein technology, which could potentially replace the well established methods that utilize auto-fluorescent proteins. In addition, direct labeling techniques have improved considerably and may supersede many of the approaches based on fusion proteins. Following sample preparation, treated cells are imaged and the resulting multiple fluorescent signals are subjected to contextual and statistical analysis. The extraordinary advantage of HCA is that it enables the large-scale and simultaneous quantification and correlation of multiple phenotypic responses and physiological reactions using sophisticated software solutions that permit assay-specific image analysis. Hence, HCA once more has demonstrated its outstanding potential to significantly support establishing effective pharmaceutical research processes in order to both advance research projects and cut costs.

  2. Open Drug Discovery Teams: A Chemistry Mobile App for Collaboration

    PubMed Central

    Ekins, Sean; Clark, Alex M; Williams, Antony J

    2012-01-01

    Abstract The Open Drug Discovery Teams (ODDT) project provides a mobile app primarily intended as a research topic aggregator of predominantly open science data collected from various sources on the internet. It exists to facilitate interdisciplinary teamwork and to relieve the user from data overload, delivering access to information that is highly relevant and focused on their topic areas of interest. Research topics include areas of chemistry and adjacent molecule-oriented biomedical sciences, with an emphasis on those which are most amenable to open research at present. These include rare and neglected diseases, and precompetitive and public-good initiatives such as green chemistry. The ODDT project uses a free mobile app as user entry point. The app has a magazine-like interface, and server-side infrastructure for hosting chemistry-related data as well as value added services. The project is open to participation from anyone and provides the ability for users to make annotations and assertions, thereby contributing to the collective value of the data to the engaged community. Much of the content is derived from public sources, but the platform is also amenable to commercial data input. The technology could also be readily used in-house by organizations as a research aggregator that could integrate internal and external science and discussion. The infrastructure for the app is currently based upon the Twitter API as a useful proof of concept for a real time source of publicly generated content. This could be extended further by accessing other APIs providing news and data feeds of relevance to a particular area of interest. As the project evolves, social networking features will be developed for organizing participants into teams, with various forms of communication and content management possible. PMID:23198003

  3. Drug Discovery Targeting Cell Division Proteins, Microtubules and FtsZ

    PubMed Central

    Kumar, Kunal; Awasthi, Divya; Vineberg, Jacob G.

    2014-01-01

    Eukaryotic cell division or cytokinesis has been a major target for anticancer drug discovery. After the huge success of paclitaxel and docetaxel, microtubule-stabilizing agents (MSAs) appear to have gained a premier status in the discovery of next-generation anticancer agents. However, the drug resistance caused by MDR, point mutations, and overexpression of tubulin subtypes, etc., is a serious issue associated with these agents. Accordingly, the discovery and development of new-generation MSAs that can obviate various drug resistances has a significant meaning. In sharp contrast, prokaryotic cell division has been largely unexploited for the discovery and development of antibacterial drugs. However, recent studies on the mechanism of bacterial cytokinesis revealed that the most abundant and highly conserved cell division protein, FtsZ, would be an excellent new target for the drug discovery of next-generation antibacterial agents that can circumvent drug-resistances to the commonly used drugs for tuberculosis, MRSA and other infections. This review describes an account of our research on these two fronts in drug discovery, targeting eukaryotic as well as prokaryotic cell division. PMID:24680057

  4. Novel bone-targeted Src tyrosine kinase inhibitor drug discovery.

    PubMed

    Shakespeare, William C; Metcalf, Chester A; Wang, Yihan; Sundaramoorthi, Raji; Keenan, Terence; Weigele, Manfred; Bohacek, Regine S; Dalgarno, David C; Sawyer, Tomi K

    2003-09-01

    Bone-targeted Src tyrosine kinase (STK) inhibitors have recently been developed for the treatment of osteoporosis and cancer-related bone diseases. The concept of bone targeting derives from bisphosphonates, and from the evolution of such molecules in terms of therapeutic efficacy for the treatment of bone disorders. Interestingly, some of the earliest bisphosphonates were recognized for their ability to inhibit calcium carbonate precipitation (scaling) by virtue of their affinity to chelate calcium. This chelating property was subsequently exploited in the development of bisphosphonate analogs as inhibitors of the bone-resorbing cells known as osteoclasts, giving rise to breakthrough medicines, such as Fosamax (for the treatment of osteoporosis) and Zometa (for the treatment of osteoporosis and bone metastases). Relative to these milestone achievements, there is a tremendous opportunity to explore beyond the limited chemical space (functional group diversity) of such bisphosphonates to design novel bone-targeting moieties, which may be used to develop other classes of promising small-molecule drugs affecting different biological pathways. Here, we review studies focused on bone-targeted inhibitors of STK, a key enzyme in osteoclast-dependent bone resorption. Two strategies are described relative to bone-targeted STK inhibitor drug discovery: (i) the development of novel Src homology (SH)-2 inhibitors incorporating non-hydrolyzable phosphotyrosine mimics and exhibiting molecular recognition and bone-targeting properties, leading to the in vivo-effective lead compound AP-22408; and (ii) the development of novel ATP-based Src kinase inhibitors incorporating bone-targeting moieties, leading to the in vivo-effective lead compound AP-23236. In summary, AP-22408 and AP-23236, which differ mechanistically by virtue of blocking Src-dependent non-catalytic or catalytic activities in osteoclasts, exemplify ARIAD Pharmaceuticals' structure-based design of novel bone

  5. Halogen bond: its role beyond drug-target binding affinity for drug discovery and development.

    PubMed

    Xu, Zhijian; Yang, Zhuo; Liu, Yingtao; Lu, Yunxiang; Chen, Kaixian; Zhu, Weiliang

    2014-01-27

    Halogen bond has attracted a great deal of attention in the past years for hit-to-lead-to-candidate optimization aiming at improving drug-target binding affinity. In general, heavy organohalogens (i.e., organochlorines, organobromines, and organoiodines) are capable of forming halogen bonds while organofluorines are not. In order to explore the possible roles that halogen bonds could play beyond improving binding affinity, we performed a detailed database survey and quantum chemistry calculation with close attention paid to (1) the change of the ratio of heavy organohalogens to organofluorines along the drug discovery and development process and (2) the halogen bonds between organohalogens and nonbiopolymers or nontarget biopolymers. Our database survey revealed that (1) an obviously increasing trend of the ratio of heavy organohalogens to organofluorines was observed along the drug discovery and development process, illustrating that more organofluorines are worn and eliminated than heavy organohalogens during the process, suggesting that heavy halogens with the capability of forming halogen bonds should have priority for lead optimization; and (2) more than 16% of the halogen bonds in PDB are formed between organohalogens and water, and nearly 20% of the halogen bonds are formed with the proteins that are involved in the ADME/T process. Our QM/MM calculations validated the contribution of the halogen bond to the binding between organohalogens and plasma transport proteins. Thus, halogen bonds could play roles not only in improving drug-target binding affinity but also in tuning ADME/T property. Therefore, we suggest that albeit halogenation is a valuable approach for improving ligand bioactivity, more attention should be paid in the future to the application of the halogen bond for ligand ADME/T property optimization.

  6. Emergence of Chinese drug discovery research: impact of hit and lead identification.

    PubMed

    Zhou, Caihong; Zhou, Yan; Wang, Jia; Zhu, Yue; Deng, Jiejie; Wang, Ming-Wei

    2015-03-01

    The identification of hits and the generation of viable leads is an early and yet crucial step in drug discovery. In the West, the main players of drug discovery are pharmaceutical and biotechnology companies, while in China, academic institutions remain central in the field of drug discovery. There has been a tremendous amount of investment from the public as well as private sectors to support infrastructure buildup and expertise consolidation relative to drug discovery and development in the past two decades. A large-scale compound library has been established in China, and a series of high-impact discoveries of lead compounds have been made by integrating information obtained from different technology-based strategies. Natural products are a major source in China's drug discovery efforts. Knowledge has been enhanced via disruptive breakthroughs such as the discovery of Boc5 as a nonpeptidic agonist of glucagon-like peptide 1 receptor (GLP-1R), one of the class B G protein-coupled receptors (GPCRs). Most of the original hit identification and lead generation were carried out by academic institutions, including universities and specialized research institutes. The Chinese pharmaceutical industry is gradually transforming itself from manufacturing low-end generics and active pharmaceutical ingredients to inventing new drugs.

  7. [Effects of psychiatric drugs on the fetus and newborn children. Consequences of the treatment of psychiatric disorders during pregnancy and lactation].

    PubMed

    Mazaira, Silvina

    2005-01-01

    The management of mental disorders during pregnancy and the postpartum period confronts the psychiatrist to a complex clinical situation. The cero risk utopia should be changed for a more realistic approach which considers the risks of having a conservative conduct (assuming the consequences of the untreated mental disorders) or making a psychopharmacological intervention knowing the expectable effects on the fetus and the offspring. The antidepressants and the conventional antipsychotics seem to be safe drugs in the first trimester of pregnancy. The benzodiazepines and the mood stabilizers are linked with the appearance of teratogenic malformations after the first trimester exposure. In the present article, the pharmacokinetic peculiarities of the pregnancy and the newborn and the general considerations of the psychopharmacological management of this kind of patients are described. At last, there is a review of the literature about the effects of the different groups of psychiatric drugs on the fetal growth, their passage to maternal milk and their impact on the newborn.

  8. Pharmacogenomics in diabetes mellitus: insights into drug action and drug discovery.

    PubMed

    Zhou, Kaixin; Pedersen, Helle Krogh; Dawed, Adem Y; Pearson, Ewan R

    2016-06-01

    Genomic studies have greatly advanced our understanding of the multifactorial aetiology of type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM) as well as the multiple subtypes of monogenic diabetes mellitus. In this Review, we discuss the existing pharmacogenetic evidence in both monogenic diabetes mellitus and T2DM. We highlight mechanistic insights from the study of adverse effects and the efficacy of antidiabetic drugs. The identification of extreme sulfonylurea sensitivity in patients with diabetes mellitus owing to heterozygous mutations in HNF1A represents a clear example of how pharmacogenetics can direct patient care. However, pharmacogenomic studies of response to antidiabetic drugs in T2DM has yet to be translated into clinical practice, although some moderate genetic effects have now been described that merit follow-up in trials in which patients are selected according to genotype. We also discuss how future pharmacogenomic findings could provide insights into treatment response in diabetes mellitus that, in addition to other areas of human genetics, facilitates drug discovery and drug development for T2DM. PMID:27062931

  9. Current progress in Structure-Based Rational Drug Design marks a new mindset in drug discovery

    PubMed Central

    Lounnas, Valère; Ritschel, Tina; Kelder, Jan; McGuire, Ross; Bywater, Robert P.; Foloppe, Nicolas

    2013-01-01

    The past decade has witnessed a paradigm shift in preclinical drug discovery with structure-based drug design (SBDD) making a comeback while high-throughput screening (HTS) methods have continued to generate disappointing results. There is a deficit of information between identified hits and the many criteria that must be fulfilled in parallel to convert them into preclinical candidates that have a real chance to become a drug. This gap can be bridged by investigating the interactions between the ligands and their receptors. Accurate calculations of the free energy of binding are still elusive; however progresses were made with respect to how one may deal with the versatile role of water. A corpus of knowledge combining X-ray structures, bioinformatics and molecular modeling techniques now allows drug designers to routinely produce receptor homology models of increasing quality. These models serve as a basis to establish and validate efficient rationales used to tailor and/or screen virtual libraries with enhanced chances of obtaining hits. Many case reports of successful SBDD show how synergy can be gained from the combined use of several techniques. The role of SBDD with respect to two different classes of widely investigated pharmaceutical targets: (a) protein kinases (PK) and (b) G-protein coupled receptors (GPCR) is discussed. Throughout these examples prototypical situations covering the current possibilities and limitations of SBDD are presented. PMID:24688704

  10. Psychiatry's next top model: cause for a re-think on drug models of psychosis and other psychiatric disorders.

    PubMed

    Carhart-Harris, R L; Brugger, S; Nutt, D J; Stone, J M

    2013-09-01

    Despite the widespread application of drug modelling in psychiatric research, the relative value of different models has never been formally compared in the same analysis. Here we compared the effects of five drugs (cannabis, psilocybin, amphetamine, ketamine and alcohol) in relation to psychiatric symptoms in a two-part subjective analysis. In the first part, mental health professionals associated statements referring to specific experiences, for example 'I don't bother to get out of bed', to one or more psychiatric symptom clusters, for example depression and negative psychotic symptoms. This measured the specificity of an experience for a particular disorder. In the second part, individuals with personal experience with each of the above-listed drugs were asked how reliably each drug produced the experiences listed in part 1, both acutely and sub-acutely. Part 1 failed to find any experiences that were specific for negative or cognitive psychotic symptoms over depression. The best model of positive symptoms was psilocybin and the best models overall were the acute alcohol and amphetamine models of mania. These results challenge current assumptions about drug models and motivate further research on this understudied area. PMID:23784738

  11. Psychiatry's next top model: cause for a re-think on drug models of psychosis and other psychiatric disorders.

    PubMed

    Carhart-Harris, R L; Brugger, S; Nutt, D J; Stone, J M

    2013-09-01

    Despite the widespread application of drug modelling in psychiatric research, the relative value of different models has never been formally compared in the same analysis. Here we compared the effects of five drugs (cannabis, psilocybin, amphetamine, ketamine and alcohol) in relation to psychiatric symptoms in a two-part subjective analysis. In the first part, mental health professionals associated statements referring to specific experiences, for example 'I don't bother to get out of bed', to one or more psychiatric symptom clusters, for example depression and negative psychotic symptoms. This measured the specificity of an experience for a particular disorder. In the second part, individuals with personal experience with each of the above-listed drugs were asked how reliably each drug produced the experiences listed in part 1, both acutely and sub-acutely. Part 1 failed to find any experiences that were specific for negative or cognitive psychotic symptoms over depression. The best model of positive symptoms was psilocybin and the best models overall were the acute alcohol and amphetamine models of mania. These results challenge current assumptions about drug models and motivate further research on this understudied area.

  12. Securing the future of drug discovery for central nervous system disorders.

    PubMed

    Andersen, Peter Høngaard; Moscicki, Richard; Sahakian, Barbara; Quirion, Rémi; Krishnan, Ranga; Race, Tim; Phillips, Anthony

    2014-12-01

    Innovative partnerships among researchers, patients, regulators, payors and industry are needed to reinvigorate drug discovery for central nervous system disorders. Here, we summarize plans of the Collegium Internationale Neuro-Psychopharmacologicum (CINP) to achieve this goal.

  13. Application of lean manufacturing concepts to drug discovery: rapid analogue library synthesis.

    PubMed

    Weller, Harold N; Nirschl, David S; Petrillo, Edward W; Poss, Michael A; Andres, Charles J; Cavallaro, Cullen L; Echols, Martin M; Grant-Young, Katherine A; Houston, John G; Miller, Arthur V; Swann, R Thomas

    2006-01-01

    The application of parallel synthesis to lead optimization programs in drug discovery has been an ongoing challenge since the first reports of library synthesis. A number of approaches to the application of parallel array synthesis to lead optimization have been attempted over the years, ranging from widespread deployment by (and support of) individual medicinal chemists to centralization as a service by an expert core team. This manuscript describes our experience with the latter approach, which was undertaken as part of a larger initiative to optimize drug discovery. In particular, we highlight how concepts taken from the manufacturing sector can be applied to drug discovery and parallel synthesis to improve the timeliness and thus the impact of arrays on drug discovery.

  14. Open access high throughput drug discovery in the public domain: a Mount Everest in the making.

    PubMed

    Roy, Anuradha; McDonald, Peter R; Sittampalam, Sitta; Chaguturu, Rathnam

    2010-11-01

    High throughput screening (HTS) facilitates screening large numbers of compounds against a biochemical target of interest using validated biological or biophysical assays. In recent years, a significant number of drugs in clinical trails originated from HTS campaigns, validating HTS as a bona fide mechanism for hit finding. In the current drug discovery landscape, the pharmaceutical industry is embracing open innovation strategies with academia to maximize their research capabilities and to feed their drug discovery pipeline. The goals of academic research have therefore expanded from target identification and validation to probe discovery, chemical genomics, and compound library screening. This trend is reflected in the emergence of HTS centers in the public domain over the past decade, ranging in size from modestly equipped academic screening centers to well endowed Molecular Libraries Probe Centers Network (MLPCN) centers funded by the NIH Roadmap initiative. These centers facilitate a comprehensive approach to probe discovery in academia and utilize both classical and cutting-edge assay technologies for executing primary and secondary screening campaigns. The various facets of academic HTS centers as well as their implications on technology transfer and drug discovery are discussed, and a roadmap for successful drug discovery in the public domain is presented. New lead discovery against therapeutic targets, especially those involving the rare and neglected diseases, is indeed a Mount Everestonian size task, and requires diligent implementation of pharmaceutical industry's best practices for a successful outcome.

  15. Perspectives on NMR in drug discovery: a technique comes of age

    PubMed Central

    Pellecchia, Maurizio; Bertini, Ivano; Cowburn, David; Dalvit, Claudio; Giralt, Ernest; Jahnke, Wolfgang; James, Thomas L.; Homans, Steve W.; Kessler, Horst; Luchinat, Claudio; Meyer, Bernd; Oschkinat, Hartmut; Peng, Jeff; Schwalbe, Harald; Siegal, Gregg

    2009-01-01

    In the past decade, the potential of harnessing the ability of nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) spectroscopy to monitor intermolecular interactions as a tool for drug discovery has been increasingly appreciated in academia and industry. In this Perspective, we highlight some of the major applications of NMR in drug discovery, focusing on hit and lead generation, and provide a critical analysis of its current and potential utility. PMID:19172689

  16. [Frontiers in Live Bone Imaging Researches. Novel drug discovery by means of intravital bone imaging technology].

    PubMed

    Ishii, Masaru

    2015-06-01

    Recent advances in intravital bone imaging technology has enabled us to grasp the real cellular behaviors and functions in vivo , revolutionizing the field of drug discovery for novel therapeutics against intractable bone diseases. In this chapter, I introduce various updated information on pharmacological actions of several antibone resorptive agents, which could only be derived from advanced imaging techniques, and also discuss the future perspectives of this new trend in drug discovery.

  17. Nexus Between Protein–Ligand Affinity Rank-Ordering, Biophysical Approaches, and Drug Discovery

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    The confluence of computational and biophysical methods to accurately rank-order the binding affinities of small molecules and determine structures of macromolecular complexes is a potentially transformative advance in the work flow of drug discovery. This viewpoint explores the impact that advanced computational methods may have on the efficacy of small molecule drug discovery and optimization, particularly with respect to emerging fragment-based methods. PMID:24900579

  18. Recent discoveries of influenza A drug target sites to combat virus replication.

    PubMed

    Patel, Hershna; Kukol, Andreas

    2016-06-15

    Sequence variations in the binding sites of influenza A proteins are known to limit the effectiveness of current antiviral drugs. Clinically, this leads to increased rates of virus transmission and pathogenicity. Potential influenza A inhibitors are continually being discovered as a result of high-throughput cell based screening studies, whereas the application of computational tools to aid drug discovery has further increased the number of predicted inhibitors reported. This review brings together the aspects that relate to the identification of influenza A drug target sites and the findings from recent antiviral drug discovery strategies. PMID:27284062

  19. [Discovery, research and development for innovative drug of traditional Chinese medicine under new situations].

    PubMed

    Tu, Peng-fei; Jiang, Yong; Guo, Xiao-yu

    2015-09-01

    Referring to the rapid developed life science and the higher requirements for the approval of innovative Chinese drugs in recent years, this paper described systematically the discovery, research and development (R&D) approaches for the innovative Chinese drugs under the new situation from the following five aspects, i. e., active components discovered from TCMs, the discovery of effective fractions of TCMs and their formulae, the R&D of TCM innovative drugs based on famous classic prescriptions and famous Chinese patent drugs, and the transformation of clinical effective prescriptions, on the basis of analysing the advantages of innovative drugs derived from natural products based on TCM theories and the problems existed in current R&D of new TCM drugs. Moreover, five suggestions are also given for the rapid development of TCM innovative drugs in China. All these will provide reference for the R&D of TCM innovative drugs.

  20. Common characteristics of open source software development and applicability for drug discovery: a systematic review

    PubMed Central

    2011-01-01

    Background Innovation through an open source model has proven to be successful for software development. This success has led many to speculate if open source can be applied to other industries with similar success. We attempt to provide an understanding of open source software development characteristics for researchers, business leaders and government officials who may be interested in utilizing open source innovation in other contexts and with an emphasis on drug discovery. Methods A systematic review was performed by searching relevant, multidisciplinary databases to extract empirical research regarding the common characteristics and barriers of initiating and maintaining an open source software development project. Results Common characteristics to open source software development pertinent to open source drug discovery were extracted. The characteristics were then grouped into the areas of participant attraction, management of volunteers, control mechanisms, legal framework and physical constraints. Lastly, their applicability to drug discovery was examined. Conclusions We believe that the open source model is viable for drug discovery, although it is unlikely that it will exactly follow the form used in software development. Hybrids will likely develop that suit the unique characteristics of drug discovery. We suggest potential motivations for organizations to join an open source drug discovery project. We also examine specific differences between software and medicines, specifically how the need for laboratories and physical goods will impact the model as well as the effect of patents. PMID:21955914

  1. Advancing cancer drug discovery towards more agile development of targeted combination therapies.

    PubMed

    Carragher, Neil O; Unciti-Broceta, Asier; Cameron, David A

    2012-01-01

    Current drug-discovery strategies are typically 'target-centric' and are based upon high-throughput screening of large chemical libraries against nominated targets and a selection of lead compounds with optimized 'on-target' potency and selectivity profiles. However, high attrition of targeted agents in clinical development suggest that combinations of targeted agents will be most effective in treating solid tumors if the biological networks that permit cancer cells to subvert monotherapies are identified and retargeted. Conventional drug-discovery and development strategies are suboptimal for the rational design and development of novel drug combinations. In this article, we highlight a series of emerging technologies supporting a less reductionist, more agile, drug-discovery and development approach for the rational design, validation, prioritization and clinical development of novel drug combinations.

  2. Astrocytic adrenoceptors: a major drug target in neurological and psychiatric disorders?

    PubMed

    Hertz, L; Chen, Y; Gibbs, M E; Zang, P; Peng, L

    2004-06-01

    Considerable attention has recently been paid to astrocyte functions, which are briefly summarized. A large amount of data is available about adrenoceptor expression and function in astrocytes, some of it dating back to the 1970's and some of it very recent. This material is reviewed in the present paper. The brain is innervated by noradrenergic fibers extending from locus coeruleus in the brain stem, which in turn is connected to a network of adrenergic and noradrenergic nuclei in the medulla and pons, contributing to the control of (nor)adrenergic, serotonergic, dopaminergic and cholinergic function, both in the central nervous system (CNS) and in the periphery. In the CNS astrocytes constitute a major target for noradrenergic innervation, which regulates morphological plasticity, energy metabolism, membrane transport, gap junction permeability and immunological responses in these cells. Noradrenergic effects on astrocytes are essential during consolidation of episodic, long-term memory, which is reinforced by beta-adrenergic activation. Glycogenolysis and synthesis of glutamate and glutamine from glucose, both of which are metabolic processes restricted to astrocytes, occur at several time-specific stages during the consolidation. Astrocytic abnormalities are almost certainly important in the pathogenesis of multiple sclerosis and in all probability contribute essentially to inflammation and malfunction in Alzheimer's disease and to mood disturbances in affective disorders. Noradrenergic function in astrocytes is severely disturbed by chronic exposure to cocaine, which also changes astrocyte morphology. Development of drugs modifying noradrenergic receptor activity and/or down-stream signaling is advocated for treatment of several neurological/psychiatric disorders and for neuroprotection. Astrocytic preparations are suggested for study of mechanism(s) of action of antidepressant drugs and pathophysiology of mood disorders. PMID:15180484

  3. The Current Status of Prescribing Psychiatric Drugs for College Students: A Nascent Science or a SNAFU?

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Amada, Gerald

    2007-01-01

    In recent years psychiatric medications have been prescribed for college students and the general public in burgeoning numbers. The vast majority of these prescriptions are written by non-psychiatrists. In the opinion of the author, psychiatric prescriptions are too often written under duress by physicians seeking a quick fix for distressed…

  4. The relationship between neuroleptic drug dose and the performance of psychiatric patients in a maximum security token economy program.

    PubMed

    Harris, G T

    1989-03-01

    This study examined the relationship between neuroleptic medication dose and performance in a token economy program on two maximum security psychiatric wards. Patients receiving higher than average doses exhibited poorer than average program performance but there was a small but statistically significant positive relationship between neuroleptic drug dose (measured in CPZ units/kg) and program performance. However, this positive relationship existed only for the first few weeks of patients' hospital stays, and there was a delay (approximately 2 weeks) between the administration of the drug and the maximal positive effect on program performance. Only a very small minority of medication changes were ever followed by improvements in program performance. The results are discussed in terms of what is a rational strategy for the provision of psychiatric medication and other forms of treatment in institutional settings.

  5. Discovery and Delivery of Synergistic Chemotherapy Drug Combinations to Tumors

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Camacho, Kathryn Militar

    Chemotherapy combinations for cancer treatments harbor immense therapeutic potentials which have largely been untapped. Of all diseases, clinical studies of drug combinations are the most prevalent in oncology, yet their effectiveness is disputable, as complete tumor regressions are rare. Our research has been devoted towards developing delivery vehicles for combinations of chemotherapy drugs which elicit significant tumor reduction yet limit toxicity in healthy tissue. Current administration methods assume that chemotherapy combinations at maximum tolerable doses will provide the greatest therapeutic effect -- a presumption which often leads to unprecedented side effects. Contrary to traditional administration, we have found that drug ratios rather than total cumulative doses govern combination therapeutic efficacy. In this thesis, we have developed nanoparticles to incorporate synergistic ratios of chemotherapy combinations which significantly inhibit cancer cell growth at lower doses than would be required for their single drug counterparts. The advantages of multi-drug incorporation in nano-vehicles are many: improved accumulation in tumor tissue via the enhanced permeation and retention effect, limited uptake in healthy tissue, and controlled exposure of tumor tissue to optimal synergistic drug ratios. To exploit these advantages for polychemotherapy delivery, two prominent nanoparticles were investigated: liposomes and polymer-drug conjugates. Liposomes represent the oldest class of nanoparticles, with high drug loading capacities and excellent biocompatibility. Polymer-drug conjugates offer controlled drug incorporations through reaction stoichiometry, and potentially allow for delivery of precise ratios. Here, we show that both vehicles, when armed with synergistic ratios of chemotherapy drugs, significantly inhibit tumor growth in an aggressive mouse breast carcinoma model. Furthermore, versatile drug incorporation methods investigated here can be broadly

  6. The pKa Distribution of Drugs: Application to Drug Discovery

    PubMed Central

    Manallack, David T.

    2007-01-01

    The acid-base dissociation constant (pKa) of a drug is a key physicochemical parameter influencing many biopharmaceutical characteristics. While this has been well established, the overall proportion of non-ionizable and ionizable compounds for drug-like substances is not well known. Even less well known is the overall distribution of acid and base pKa values. The current study has reviewed the literature with regard to both the proportion of ionizable substances and pKa distributions. Further to this a set of 582 drugs with associated pKa data was thoroughly examined to provide a representative set of observations. This was further enhanced by delineating the compounds into CNS and non-CNS drugs to investigate where differences exist. Interestingly, the distribution of pKa values for single acids differed remarkably between CNS and non-CNS substances with only one CNS compound having an acid pKa below 6.1. The distribution of basic substances in the CNS set also showed a marked cut off with no compounds having a pKa above 10.5. The pKa distributions of drugs are influenced by two main drivers. The first is related to the nature and frequency of occurrence of the functional groups that are commonly observed in pharmaceuticals and the typical range of pKa values they span. The other factor concerns the biological targets these compounds are designed to hit. For example, many CNS targets are based on seven transmembrane G protein-coupled receptors (7TM GPCR) which have a key aspartic acid residue known to interact with most ligands. As a consequence, amines are mostly present in the ligands that target 7TM GPCR’s and this influences the pKa profile of drugs containing basic groups. For larger screening collections of compounds, synthetic chemistry and the working practices of the chemists themselves can influence the proportion of ionizable compounds and consequent pKa distributions. The findings from this study expand on current wisdom in pKa research and have

  7. In vivo drug target discovery: identifying the best targets from the genome.

    PubMed

    Walke, D W; Han, C; Shaw, J; Wann, E; Zambrowicz, B; Sands, A

    2001-12-01

    A vast number of genes of unknown function threaten to clog drug discovery pipelines. To develop therapeutic products from novel genomic targets, it will be necessary to correlate biology with gene sequence information. Industrialized mouse reverse genetics is being used to determine gene function in the context of mammalian physiology and to identify the best targets for drug development.

  8. Biodiversity conservation and drug discovery: Can they be combined? The Suriname and Madagascar experiences

    PubMed Central

    Cao, Shugeng; Kingston, David G. I.

    2009-01-01

    The approach to new drugs through natural products has proved to be the single most successful strategy for the discovery of new drugs, but in recent years its use has been deemphasized by many pharmaceutical companies in favor of approaches based on combinatorial chemistry and genomics, among others. Drug discovery from natural sources requires continued access to plant, marine, and microbial biomass, and so the preservation of tropical rainforests is an important part of our drug discovery program. Sadly, many of the tropical forests of the world are under severe environmental pressure, and deforestation is a serious problem in most tropical countries. One way to combat this loss is to demonstrate their value as potential sources of new pharmaceutical or agrochemical products. As part of an effort to integrate biodiversity conservation and drug discovery with economic development, we initiated an International Cooperative biodiversity Group (ICBG) to discover potential pharmaceuticals from the plant biodiversity of Suriname and Madagascar. The Group, established with funding from agencies of the United States government, involved participants from the USA, Suriname, and Madagascar. The basic approach was to search for bioactive plants in the Suriname and Malagasy flora, and to isolate their bioactive constituents by the best available methods, but the work included capacity building as well as research. Progress on this project will be reported, drawing on results obtained from the isolation of bioactive natural products from Suriname and Madagascar. The benefits of this general approach to biodiversity and drug discovery will also be discussed. PMID:20161050

  9. Developing highER-throughput zebrafish screens for in-vivo CNS drug discovery

    PubMed Central

    Stewart, Adam Michael; Gerlai, Robert; Kalueff, Allan V.

    2015-01-01

    The high prevalence of brain disorders and the lack of their efficient treatments necessitate improved in-vivo pre-clinical models and tests. The zebrafish (Danio rerio), a vertebrate species with high genetic and physiological homology to humans, is an excellent organism for innovative central nervous system (CNS) drug discovery and small molecule screening. Here, we outline new strategies for developing higher-throughput zebrafish screens to test neuroactive drugs and predict their pharmacological mechanisms. With the growing application of automated 3D phenotyping, machine learning algorithms, movement pattern- and behavior recognition, and multi-animal video-tracking, zebrafish screens are expected to markedly improve CNS drug discovery. PMID:25729356

  10. Developing highER-throughput zebrafish screens for in-vivo CNS drug discovery.

    PubMed

    Stewart, Adam Michael; Gerlai, Robert; Kalueff, Allan V

    2015-01-01

    The high prevalence of brain disorders and the lack of their efficient treatments necessitate improved in-vivo pre-clinical models and tests. The zebrafish (Danio rerio), a vertebrate species with high genetic and physiological homology to humans, is an excellent organism for innovative central nervous system (CNS) drug discovery and small molecule screening. Here, we outline new strategies for developing higher-throughput zebrafish screens to test neuroactive drugs and predict their pharmacological mechanisms. With the growing application of automated 3D phenotyping, machine learning algorithms, movement pattern- and behavior recognition, and multi-animal video-tracking, zebrafish screens are expected to markedly improve CNS drug discovery. PMID:25729356

  11. Quinoxaline Nucleus: A Promising Scaffold in Anti-cancer Drug Discovery.

    PubMed

    Pinheiro, Alessandra C; Mendonça Nogueira, Thais C; de Souza, Marcus V N

    2016-01-01

    Heterocyclic compounds are a class of substances, which play a critical role in modern drug discovery being incorporated in the structure of a large variety of drugs used in many different types of diseases. Quinoxaline is an important heterocyclic nucleus with a wide spectrum of biological activities, and recently much attention has been found on anticancer drug discovery based on this class. Owing to the importance of this system, the aim of this review is to provide an update on the synthesis and anticancer activity of quinoxaline derivatives covering articles published between 2010 and 2015.

  12. Developing highER-throughput zebrafish screens for in-vivo CNS drug discovery.

    PubMed

    Stewart, Adam Michael; Gerlai, Robert; Kalueff, Allan V

    2015-01-01

    The high prevalence of brain disorders and the lack of their efficient treatments necessitate improved in-vivo pre-clinical models and tests. The zebrafish (Danio rerio), a vertebrate species with high genetic and physiological homology to humans, is an excellent organism for innovative central nervous system (CNS) drug discovery and small molecule screening. Here, we outline new strategies for developing higher-throughput zebrafish screens to test neuroactive drugs and predict their pharmacological mechanisms. With the growing application of automated 3D phenotyping, machine learning algorithms, movement pattern- and behavior recognition, and multi-animal video-tracking, zebrafish screens are expected to markedly improve CNS drug discovery.

  13. Transforming the work of early-stage drug discovery through bioprocess informatics.

    PubMed

    Holzman, Thomas F; Hebert, Eric J

    2005-01-01

    Drug discovery has historically advanced by synergy and chance. These are proving insufficient to meet the needs of the marketplace and the demands of modern medicine. We describe our strategic approaches to building and employing flexible informatics tools to transform and improve the workflows and efficiencies of the early-stages of target development in drug discovery. We contrast our approach to strategies that have recently evolved at startup biotechnology companies who use similar technological approaches to drug development but who are less encumbered by precedent and history.

  14. Consideration of the cellular microenvironment: physiologically relevant co-culture systems in drug discovery.

    PubMed

    L Berg, Ellen; Hsu, Yu-Chih; Lee, Jonathan A

    2014-04-01

    There is renewed interest in phenotypic approaches to drug discovery, using cell-based assays to select new drugs, with the goal of improving pharmaceutical success. Assays that are more predictive of human biology can help researchers achieve this goal. Primary cells are more physiologically relevant to human biology and advances are being made in methods to expand the available cell types and improve the potential clinical translation of these assays through the use of co-cultures or three-dimensional (3D) technologies. Of particular interest are assays that may be suitable for industrial scale drug discovery. Here we review the use of primary human cells and co-cultures in drug discovery and describe the characteristics of co-culture models for inflammation biology (BioMAP systems), neo-vascularization and tumor microenvironments. Finally we briefly describe technical trends that may enable and impact the development of physiologically relevant co-culture assays in the near future. PMID:24524933

  15. Pharmacogenetics: data, concepts and tools to improve drug discovery and drug treatment

    PubMed Central

    Tzvetkov, Mladen V.

    2008-01-01

    Variation in the human genome is a most important cause of variable response to drugs and other xenobiotics. Susceptibility to almost all diseases is determined to some extent by genetic variation. Driven by the advances in molecular biology, pharmacogenetics has evolved within the past 40 years from a niche discipline to a major driving force of clinical pharmacology, and it is currently one of the most actively pursued disciplines in applied biomedical research in general. Nowadays we can assess more than 1,000,000 polymorphisms or the expression of more than 25,000 genes in each participant of a clinical study – at affordable costs. This has not yet significantly changed common therapeutic practices, but a number of physicians are starting to consider polymorphisms, such as those in CYP2C9, CYP2C19, CYP2D6, TPMT and VKORC1, in daily medical practice. More obviously, pharmacogenetics has changed the practices and requirements in preclinical and clinical drug research; large clinical trials without a pharmacogenomic add-on appear to have become the minority. This review is about how the discipline of pharmacogenetics has evolved from the analysis of single proteins to current approaches involving the broad analyses of the entire genome and of all mRNA species or all metabolites and other approaches aimed at trying to understand the entire biological system. Pharmacogenetics and genomics are becoming substantially integrated fields of the profession of clinical pharmacology, and education in the relevant methods, knowledge and concepts form an indispensable part of the clinical pharmacology curriculum and the professional life of pharmacologists from early drug discovery to pharmacovigilance. PMID:18224312

  16. New strategies and paradigm for drug target discovery: a special focus on infectious diseases tuberculosis, malaria, leishmaniasis, trypanosomiasis and gastritis.

    PubMed

    Neelapu, Nageswara R R; Srimath-Tirumala-Peddinti, Ravi C P K; Nammi, Deepthi; Pasupuleti, Amita C M

    2013-10-01

    The discovery and exploitation of new drug targets is a key focus for both the pharmaceutical industry and academic research. To provide an insight into trends in the exploitation of new drug targets, we have analysed different methods during the past six decades and advances made in drug target discovery. A special focus remains on different methods used for drug target discovery on infectious diseases such as Tuberculosis, Gastritis, Malaria, Trypanosomiasis and Leishmaniasis. We herewith provide a paradigm that is can be used for drug target discovery in the near future.

  17. Systems biology-embedded target validation: improving efficacy in drug discovery.

    PubMed

    Vandamme, Drieke; Minke, Benedikt A; Fitzmaurice, William; Kholodenko, Boris N; Kolch, Walter

    2014-01-01

    The pharmaceutical industry is faced with a range of challenges with the ever-escalating costs of drug development and a drying out of drug pipelines. By harnessing advances in -omics technologies and moving away from the standard, reductionist model of drug discovery, there is significant potential to reduce costs and improve efficacy. Embedding systems biology approaches in drug discovery, which seek to investigate underlying molecular mechanisms of potential drug targets in a network context, will reduce attrition rates by earlier target validation and the introduction of novel targets into the currently stagnant market. Systems biology approaches also have the potential to assist in the design of multidrug treatments and repositioning of existing drugs, while stratifying patients to give a greater personalization of medical treatment.

  18. Approaches to target identification and validation for tuberculosis drug discovery: a UCT perspective.

    PubMed

    Warner, Digby F; Mizrahi, Valerie

    2012-06-01

    Tuberculosis (TB) disproportionately affects a few high-burden countries including South Africa. In these regions, basic TB research is rare, endemic countries being valued primarily as sites for drug trials and clinical studies. Our basic mycobacterial research focuses on current approaches to drug target identification and validation within the context of international trends in TB drug discovery. Increased funding for TB drug development globally prompted a significant shift in the composition of drug discovery consortia, with academic laboratories assuming a major role in collaboration with industrial partners. This hybrid model holds promise for the expansion of local programmes, especially where actively supported by government. However, the application of industry-standard business practices to research projects involving biology and chemistry expertise demands a greater appreciation of the differences between a chemically, versus biologically, validated drug target, and of the factors informing these differences. PMID:22668936

  19. Exploring the role of receptor flexibility in structure-based drug discovery.

    PubMed

    Feixas, Ferran; Lindert, Steffen; Sinko, William; McCammon, J Andrew

    2014-02-01

    The proper understanding of biomolecular recognition mechanisms that take place in a drug target is of paramount importance to improve the efficiency of drug discovery and development. The intrinsic dynamic character of proteins has a strong influence on biomolecular recognition mechanisms and models such as conformational selection have been widely used to account for this dynamic association process. However, conformational changes occurring in the receptor prior and upon association with other molecules are diverse and not obvious to predict when only a few structures of the receptor are available. In view of the prominent role of protein flexibility in ligand binding and its implications for drug discovery, it is of great interest to identify receptor conformations that play a major role in biomolecular recognition before starting rational drug design efforts. In this review, we discuss a number of recent advances in computer-aided drug discovery techniques that have been proposed to incorporate receptor flexibility into structure-based drug design. The allowance for receptor flexibility provided by computational techniques such as molecular dynamics simulations or enhanced sampling techniques helps to improve the accuracy of methods used to estimate binding affinities and, thus, such methods can contribute to the discovery of novel drug leads. PMID:24332165

  20. Exploring the Role of Receptor Flexibility in Structure-Based Drug Discovery

    PubMed Central

    Feixas, Ferran; Lindert, Steffen; Sinko, William; McCammon, J. Andrew

    2015-01-01

    The proper understanding of biomolecular recognition mechanisms that take place in a drug target is of paramount importance to improve the efficiency of drug discovery and development. The intrinsic dynamic character of proteins has a strong influence on biomolecular recognition mechanisms and models such as conformational selection have been widely used to account for this dynamic association process. However, conformational changes occurring in the receptor prior and upon association with other molecules are diverse and not obvious to predict when only a few structures of the receptor are available. In view of the prominent role of protein flexibility in ligand binding and its implications for drug discovery, it is of great interest to identify receptor conformations that play a major role in biomolecular recognition before starting rational drug design efforts. In this review, we discuss a number of recent advances in computer-aided drug discovery techniques that have been proposed to incorporate receptor flexibility into structure-based drug design. The allowance for receptor flexibility provided by computational techniques such as molecular dynamics simulations or enhanced sampling techniques helps to improve the accuracy of methods used to estimate binding affinities and, thus, such methods can contribute to the discovery of novel drug leads. PMID:24332165

  1. Why and how have drug discovery strategies in pharma changed? What are the new mindsets?

    PubMed

    Mignani, Serge; Huber, Scot; Tomás, Helena; Rodrigues, João; Majoral, Jean-Pierre

    2016-02-01

    In the pharmaceutical industry the long-term challenge of drug innovation is the key phrase throughout R&D that refers to increasing the output of original drug candidate molecules. To increase R&D productivity, implementation of new and strategic R&D orientations to develop new approaches or systems to identify hits and leads efficiently has taken place and enabled all scientists working in the drug discovery domain to develop innovative medicines for the 21st century.

  2. Cancer in silico drug discovery: a systems biology tool for identifying candidate drugs to target specific molecular tumor subtypes.

    PubMed

    San Lucas, F Anthony; Fowler, Jerry; Chang, Kyle; Kopetz, Scott; Vilar, Eduardo; Scheet, Paul

    2014-12-01

    Large-scale cancer datasets such as The Cancer Genome Atlas (TCGA) allow researchers to profile tumors based on a wide range of clinical and molecular characteristics. Subsequently, TCGA-derived gene expression profiles can be analyzed with the Connectivity Map (CMap) to find candidate drugs to target tumors with specific clinical phenotypes or molecular characteristics. This represents a powerful computational approach for candidate drug identification, but due to the complexity of TCGA and technology differences between CMap and TCGA experiments, such analyses are challenging to conduct and reproduce. We present Cancer in silico Drug Discovery (CiDD; scheet.org/software), a computational drug discovery platform that addresses these challenges. CiDD integrates data from TCGA, CMap, and Cancer Cell Line Encyclopedia (CCLE) to perform computational drug discovery experiments, generating hypotheses for the following three general problems: (i) determining whether specific clinical phenotypes or molecular characteristics are associated with unique gene expression signatures; (ii) finding candidate drugs to repress these expression signatures; and (iii) identifying cell lines that resemble the tumors being studied for subsequent in vitro experiments. The primary input to CiDD is a clinical or molecular characteristic. The output is a biologically annotated list of candidate drugs and a list of cell lines for in vitro experimentation. We applied CiDD to identify candidate drugs to treat colorectal cancers harboring mutations in BRAF. CiDD identified EGFR and proteasome inhibitors, while proposing five cell lines for in vitro testing. CiDD facilitates phenotype-driven, systematic drug discovery based on clinical and molecular data from TCGA.

  3. Structure-Based Strategies for Drug Design and Discovery

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kuntz, Irwin D.

    1992-08-01

    Most drugs have been discovered in random screens or by exploiting information about macromolecular receptors. One source of this information is in the structures of critical proteins and nucleic acids. The structure-based approach to design couples this information with specialized computer programs to propose novel enzyme inhibitors and other therapeutic agents. Iterated design cycles have produced compounds now in clinical trials. The combination of molecular structure determination and computation is emerging as an important tool for drug development. These ideas will be applied to acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (AIDS) and bacterial drug resistance.

  4. Structure-based drug discovery for botulinum neurotoxins.

    PubMed

    Swaminathan, Subramanyam

    2013-01-01

    Clostridium botulinum neurotoxin is the most poisonous substance known to humans. It is a potential biowarfare threat and a public health hazard. The only therapeutics available is antibody treatment which will not be effective for post-exposure therapy. There are no drugs available for post-intoxication treatment. Accordingly, it is imperative to develop effective drugs to counter botulism. Available structural information on botulinum neurotoxins both alone and in complex with their substrates offers an efficient method for designing structure-based drugs to treat botulism.

  5. New directions for protease inhibitors directed drug discovery.

    PubMed

    Hamada, Yoshio; Kiso, Yoshiaki

    2016-11-01

    Proteases play crucial roles in various biological processes, and their activities are essential for all living organisms-from viruses to humans. Since their functions are closely associated with many pathogenic mechanisms, their inhibitors or activators are important molecular targets for developing treatments for various diseases. Here, we describe drugs/drug candidates that target proteases, such as malarial plasmepsins, β-secretase, virus proteases, and dipeptidyl peptidase-4. Previously, we reported inhibitors of aspartic proteases, such as renin, human immunodeficiency virus type 1 protease, human T-lymphotropic virus type I protease, plasmepsins, and β-secretase, as drug candidates for hypertension, adult T-cell leukaemia, human T-lymphotropic virus type I-associated myelopathy, malaria, and Alzheimer's disease. Our inhibitors are also described in this review article as examples of drugs that target proteases. © 2015 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. Biopolymers (Pept Sci) 106: 563-579, 2016. PMID:26584340

  6. Can formulation and drug delivery reduce attrition during drug discovery and development—review of feasibility, benefits and challenges

    PubMed Central

    Basavaraj, S; Betageri, Guru V.

    2014-01-01

    Drug discovery and development has become longer and costlier process. The fear of failure and stringent regulatory review process is driving pharmaceutical companies towards “me too” drugs and improved generics (505(b) (2)) fillings. The discontinuance of molecules at late stage clinical trials is common these years. The molecules are withdrawn at various stages of discovery and development process for reasons such as poor ADME properties, lack of efficacy and safety reasons. Hence this review focuses on possible applications of formulation and drug delivery to salvage molecules and improve the drugability. The formulation and drug delivery technologies are suitable for addressing various issues contributing to attrition are discussed in detail. PMID:26579359

  7. Novel Data Mining Methodologies for Adverse Drug Event Discovery and Analysis

    PubMed Central

    Harpaz, Rave; DuMouchel, William; Shah, Nigam H.; Madigan, David; Ryan, Patrick; Friedman, Carol

    2013-01-01

    Introduction Discovery of new adverse drug events (ADEs) in the post-approval period is an important goal of the health system. Data mining methods that can transform data into meaningful knowledge to inform patient safety have proven to be essential. New opportunities have emerged to harness data sources that have not been used within the traditional framework. This article provides an overview of recent methodological innovations and data sources used in support of ADE discovery and analysis. PMID:22549283

  8. Postmarket Drug Surveillance Without Trial Costs: Discovery of Adverse Drug Reactions Through Large-Scale Analysis of Web Search Queries

    PubMed Central

    Gabrilovich, Evgeniy

    2013-01-01

    Background Postmarket drug safety surveillance largely depends on spontaneous reports by patients and health care providers; hence, less common adverse drug reactions—especially those caused by long-term exposure, multidrug treatments, or those specific to special populations—often elude discovery. Objective Here we propose a low cost, fully automated method for continuous monitoring of adverse drug reactions in single drugs and in combinations thereof, and demonstrate the discovery of heretofore-unknown ones. Methods We used aggregated search data of large populations of Internet users to extract information related to drugs and adverse reactions to them, and correlated these data over time. We further extended our method to identify adverse reactions to combinations of drugs. Results We validated our method by showing high correlations of our findings with known adverse drug reactions (ADRs). However, although acute early-onset drug reactions are more likely to be reported to regulatory agencies, we show that less acute later-onset ones are better captured in Web search queries. Conclusions Our method is advantageous in identifying previously unknown adverse drug reactions. These ADRs should be considered as candidates for further scrutiny by medical regulatory authorities, for example, through phase 4 trials. PMID:23778053

  9. Modern Natural Products Drug Discovery and its Relevance to Biodiversity Conservation†

    PubMed Central

    Kingston, David G. I.

    2010-01-01

    Natural products continue to provide a diverse and unique source of bioactive lead compounds for drug discovery, but maintaining their continued eminence as source compounds is challenging in the face of the changing face of the pharmaceutical industry and the changing nature of biodiversity prospecting brought about by the Convention of Biodiversity. This review provides an overview of some of these challenges, and suggests ways in which they can be addressed so that natural products research can remain a viable and productive route to drug discovery. Results from International Cooperative Biodiversity Groups (ICBGs) working in Madagascar, Panama, and Suriname are used as examples of what can be achieved when biodiversity conservation is linked to drug discovery. PMID:21138324

  10. Strategies to support drug discovery through integration of systems and data.

    PubMed

    Waller, Chris L; Shah, Ajay; Nolte, Matthias

    2007-08-01

    Much progress has been made over the past several years to provide technologies for the integration of drug discovery software applications and the underlying data bits. Integration at the application layer has focused primarily on developing and delivering applications that support specific workflows within the drug discovery arena. A fine balance between creating behemoth applications and providing business value must be maintained. Heterogeneous data sources have typically been integrated at the data level in an effort to provide a more holistic view of the data packages supporting key decision points. This review will highlight past attempts, current status, and potential future directions for systems and data integration strategies in support of drug discovery efforts. PMID:17706544

  11. Outsourcing drug discovery to India and China: from surviving to thriving.

    PubMed

    Subramaniam, Swaminathan; Dugar, Sundeep

    2012-10-01

    Global pharmaceutical companies face an increasingly harsh environment for their primary business of selling medicines. They have to contend with a spiraling decline in the productivity of their R&D programs that is guaranteed to severely diminish their growth prospects. Outsourcing of drug discovery activities to low-cost locations is a growing response to this crisis. However, the upsides to outsourcing are capped by the failure of global pharmaceutical companies to take advantage of the full range of possibilities that this model provides. Companies that radically rethink and transform the way they conduct R&D, such as seeking the benefits of low-cost locations in India and China will be the ones that thrive in this environment. In this article we present our views on how the outsourcing model in drug discovery should go beyond increasing the efficiency of existing drug discovery processes to a fundamental rethink and re-engineering of these processes. PMID:22542471

  12. Strategies to support drug discovery through integration of systems and data.

    PubMed

    Waller, Chris L; Shah, Ajay; Nolte, Matthias

    2007-08-01

    Much progress has been made over the past several years to provide technologies for the integration of drug discovery software applications and the underlying data bits. Integration at the application layer has focused primarily on developing and delivering applications that support specific workflows within the drug discovery arena. A fine balance between creating behemoth applications and providing business value must be maintained. Heterogeneous data sources have typically been integrated at the data level in an effort to provide a more holistic view of the data packages supporting key decision points. This review will highlight past attempts, current status, and potential future directions for systems and data integration strategies in support of drug discovery efforts.

  13. A fully integrated protein crystallization platform for small-molecule drug discovery.

    PubMed

    Hosfield, David; Palan, John; Hilgers, Mark; Scheibe, Daniel; McRee, Duncan E; Stevens, Raymond C

    2003-04-01

    Structure-based drug discovery in the pharmaceutical industry benefits from cost-efficient methodologies that quickly assess the feasibility of specific, often refractory, protein targets to form well-diffracting crystals. By tightly coupling construct and purification diversity with nanovolume crystallization, the Structural Biology Group at Syrrx has developed such a platform to support its small-molecule drug-discovery program. During the past 18 months of operation at Syrrx, the Structural Biology Group has executed several million crystallization and imaging trials on over 400 unique drug-discovery targets. Here, key components of the platform, as well as an analysis of some experimental results that allowed for platform optimization, will be described.

  14. Outsourcing drug discovery to India and China: from surviving to thriving.

    PubMed

    Subramaniam, Swaminathan; Dugar, Sundeep

    2012-10-01

    Global pharmaceutical companies face an increasingly harsh environment for their primary business of selling medicines. They have to contend with a spiraling decline in the productivity of their R&D programs that is guaranteed to severely diminish their growth prospects. Outsourcing of drug discovery activities to low-cost locations is a growing response to this crisis. However, the upsides to outsourcing are capped by the failure of global pharmaceutical companies to take advantage of the full range of possibilities that this model provides. Companies that radically rethink and transform the way they conduct R&D, such as seeking the benefits of low-cost locations in India and China will be the ones that thrive in this environment. In this article we present our views on how the outsourcing model in drug discovery should go beyond increasing the efficiency of existing drug discovery processes to a fundamental rethink and re-engineering of these processes.

  15. Discovery of novel drug targets and their functions using phenotypic screening of natural products.

    PubMed

    Chang, Junghwa; Kwon, Ho Jeong

    2016-03-01

    Natural products are valuable resources that provide a variety of bioactive compounds and natural pharmacophores in modern drug discovery. Discovery of biologically active natural products and unraveling their target proteins to understand their mode of action have always been critical hurdles for their development into clinical drugs. For effective discovery and development of bioactive natural products into novel therapeutic drugs, comprehensive screening and identification of target proteins are indispensable. In this review, a systematic approach to understanding the mode of action of natural products isolated using phenotypic screening involving chemical proteomics-based target identification is introduced. This review highlights three natural products recently discovered via phenotypic screening, namely glucopiericidin A, ecumicin, and terpestacin, as representative case studies to revisit the pivotal role of natural products as powerful tools in discovering the novel functions and druggability of targets in biological systems and pathological diseases of interest.

  16. Novel stem cell-based drug discovery platforms for cardiovascular disease.

    PubMed

    Adams, William J; García-Cardeña, Guillermo

    2012-10-01

    The complexity and diversity of many human diseases pose significant hurdles to the development of novel therapeutics. New scientific and technological advances, such as pharmacogenetics, provide valuable frameworks for understanding genetic predisposition to disease and tools for diagnosis and drug development. However, another framework is emerging based on recent scientific advances, one we suggest to call pharmacoempirics. Pharmacoempirics takes advantage of merging two nascent fields: first, the generation of induced pluripotent stem cells, which are differentiated into mature cell types and represent patient-specific genetic backgrounds, and, second, bioengineering advances allowing sophisticated re-creation of human pathophysiology in laboratory settings. The combination of these two innovative technologies should allow new experimentation on disease biology and drug discovery, efficacy, and toxicology unencumbered by hypothesis generation and testing. In this review, we discuss the challenges and promises of this exciting new type of discovery platform and outline its implementation for cardiovascular drug discovery.

  17. Can Functional Magnetic Resonance Imaging Improve Success Rates in CNS Drug Discovery?

    PubMed Central

    Borsook, David; Hargreaves, Richard; Becerra, Lino

    2011-01-01

    Introduction The bar for developing new treatments for CNS disease is getting progressively higher and fewer novel mechanisms are being discovered, validated and developed. The high costs of drug discovery necessitate early decisions to ensure the best molecules and hypotheses are tested in expensive late stage clinical trials. The discovery of brain imaging biomarkers that can bridge preclinical to clinical CNS drug discovery and provide a ‘language of translation’ affords the opportunity to improve the objectivity of decision-making. Areas Covered This review discusses the benefits, challenges and potential issues of using a science based biomarker strategy to change the paradigm of CNS drug development and increase success rates in the discovery of new medicines. The authors have summarized PubMed and Google Scholar based publication searches to identify recent advances in functional, structural and chemical brain imaging and have discussed how these techniques may be useful in defining CNS disease state and drug effects during drug development. Expert opinion The use of novel brain imaging biomarkers holds the bold promise of making neuroscience drug discovery smarter by increasing the objectivity of decision making thereby improving the probability of success of identifying useful drugs to treat CNS diseases. Functional imaging holds the promise to: (1) define pharmacodynamic markers as an index of target engagement (2) improve translational medicine paradigms to predict efficacy; (3) evaluate CNS efficacy and safety based on brain activation; (4) determine brain activity drug dose-response relationships and (5) provide an objective evaluation of symptom response and disease modification. PMID:21765857

  18. Fungal biofilm composition and opportunities in drug discovery.

    PubMed

    Reichhardt, Courtney; Stevens, David A; Cegelski, Lynette

    2016-08-01

    Biofilm infections are exceptionally recalcitrant to antimicrobial treatment or clearance by host immune responses. Within biofilms, microbes form adherent multicellular communities that are embedded in an extracellular matrix. Many prescribed antifungal drugs are not effective against biofilm infections owing to several protective factors including poor diffusion of drugs through biofilms as well as specific drug-matrix interactions. Despite the key roles that biofilms play in infections, there is little quantitative information about their composition and structural complexity because of the analytical challenge of studying these dense networks using traditional techniques. Within this review, recent work to elucidate fungal biofilm composition is discussed, with particular attention given to the challenges of annotation and quantification of matrix composition. PMID:27485639

  19. Literature mining for the discovery of hidden connections between drugs, genes and diseases.

    PubMed

    Frijters, Raoul; van Vugt, Marianne; Smeets, Ruben; van Schaik, René; de Vlieg, Jacob; Alkema, Wynand

    2010-09-23

    The scientific literature represents a rich source for retrieval of knowledge on associations between biomedical concepts such as genes, diseases and cellular processes. A commonly used method to establish relationships between biomedical concepts from literature is co-occurrence. Apart from its use in knowledge retrieval, the co-occurrence method is also well-suited to discover new, hidden relationships between biomedical concepts following a simple ABC-principle, in which A and C have no direct relationship, but are connected via shared B-intermediates. In this paper we describe CoPub Discovery, a tool that mines the literature for new relationships between biomedical concepts. Statistical analysis using ROC curves showed that CoPub Discovery performed well over a wide range of settings and keyword thesauri. We subsequently used CoPub Discovery to search for new relationships between genes, drugs, pathways and diseases. Several of the newly found relationships were validated using independent literature sources. In addition, new predicted relationships between compounds and cell proliferation were validated and confirmed experimentally in an in vitro cell proliferation assay. The results show that CoPub Discovery is able to identify novel associations between genes, drugs, pathways and diseases that have a high probability of being biologically valid. This makes CoPub Discovery a useful tool to unravel the mechanisms behind disease, to find novel drug targets, or to find novel applications for existing drugs.

  20. Natural products and drug discovery: a survey of stakeholders in industry and academia

    PubMed Central

    Amirkia, Vafa; Heinrich, Michael

    2015-01-01

    Context: In recent decades, natural products have undisputedly played a leading role in the development of novel medicines. Yet, trends in the pharmaceutical industry at the level of research investments indicate that natural product research is neither prioritized nor perceived as fruitful in drug discovery programmes as compared with incremental structural modifications and large volume HTS screening of synthetics. Aim: We seek to understand this phenomenon through insights from highly experienced natural product experts in industry and academia. Method: We conducted a survey including a series of qualitative and quantitative questions related to current insights and prospective developments in natural product drug development. The survey was completed by a cross-section of 52 respondents in industry and academia. Results: One recurrent theme is the dissonance between the perceived high potential of NP as drug leads among individuals and the survey participants' assessment of the overall industry and/or company level strategies and their success. The study's industry and academic respondents did not perceive current discovery efforts as more effective as compared with previous decades, yet industry contacts perceived higher hit rates in HTS efforts as compared with academic respondents. Surprisingly, many industry contacts were highly critical to prevalent company and industry-wide drug discovery strategies indicating a high level of dissatisfaction within the industry. Conclusions: These findings support the notion that there is an increasing gap in perception between the effectiveness of well established, commercially widespread drug discovery strategies between those working in industry and academic experts. This research seeks to shed light on this gap and aid in furthering natural product discovery endeavors through an analysis of current bottlenecks in industry drug discovery programmes. PMID:26578954

  1. Antimalarial Drug Discovery: Approaches and Progress towards New Medicines

    PubMed Central

    Flannery, Erika L.; Chatterjee, Arnab K.; Winzeler, Elizabeth A.

    2014-01-01

    Malaria elimination has recently been reinstated as a global health priority but current therapies seem to be insufficient for the task. Elimination efforts require new drug classes that alleviate symptoms, prevent transmission and provide a radical cure. To develop these next generation medicines, public-private partnerships are funding innovative approaches to identify compounds that target multiple parasite species at multiple stages of the parasite lifecycle. Here, we review the cell-, chemistry- and target-based approaches used to discover new drug candidates that are currently in clinical trials or undergoing preclinical testing. PMID:24217412

  2. Drug discovery in the next decade: innovation needed ASAP.

    PubMed

    Bennani, Youssef L

    2011-09-01

    Pharmaceutical companies must find a better way to increase their output of truly new drugs for the benefit of patients and for their business survival. Here, I highlight a general perspective from within pharmaceutical research as it pertains to research advances in chemistry, biology, pharmacology, pharmacokinetics and toxicology that, if well integrated, stands to put the industry on a productive path. In addition, I provide a complementary perspective on the corporate culture aspect of innovation. I also introduce a new concept, termed 'innovation ASAP' (iASAP; asking powerful questions, seeking the outliers, accepting defeat and populating astutely) and provide support for it using examples of several successful drugs. PMID:21704185

  3. Drug discovery in the next decade: innovation needed ASAP.

    PubMed

    Bennani, Youssef L

    2012-02-01

    Pharmaceutical companies must find a better way to increase their output of truly new drugs for the benefit of patients and for their business survival. Here, I highlight a general perspective from within pharmaceutical research as it pertains to research advances in chemistry, biology, pharmacology, pharmacokinetics and toxicology that, if well integrated, stands to put the industry on a productive path. In addition, I provide a complementary perspective on the corporate culture aspect of innovation. I also introduce a new concept, termed 'innovation ASAP' (iASAP; asking powerful questions, seeking the outliers, accepting defeat and populating astutely) and provide support for it using examples of several successful drugs. PMID:22178889

  4. Treatment of medical, psychiatric, and substance-use comorbidities in people infected with HIV who use drugs

    PubMed Central

    Altice, Frederick L; Kamarulzaman, Adeeba; Soriano, Vincent V; Schechter, Mauro; Friedland, Gerald H

    2016-01-01

    HIV-infected drug users have increased age-matched morbidity and mortality compared with HIV-infected people who do not use drugs. Substance-use disorders negatively affect the health of HIV-infected drug users, who also have frequent medical and psychiatric comorbidities that complicate HIV treatment and prevention. Evidence-based treatments are available for the management of substance-use disorders, mental illness, HIV and other infectious complications such as viral hepatitis and tuberculosis, and many non-HIV-associated comorbidities. Tuberculosis co-infection in HIV-infected drug users, including disease caused by drug-resistant strains, is acquired and transmitted as a consequence of inadequate prescription of antiretroviral therapy, poor adherence, and repeated interfaces with congregate settings such as prisons. Medication-assisted therapies provide the strongest evidence for HIV treatment and prevention efforts, yet are often not available where they are needed most. Antiretroviral therapy, when prescribed and adherence is at an optimum, improves health-related outcomes for HIV infection and many of its comorbidities, including tuberculosis, viral hepatitis, and renal and cardiovascular disease. Simultaneous clinical management of multiple comorbidities in HIV-infected drug users might result in complex pharmacokinetic drug interactions that must be adequately addressed. Moreover, interventions to improve adherence to treatment, including integration of health services delivery, are needed. Multifaceted, interdisciplinary approaches are urgently needed to achieve parity in health outcomes in HIV-infected drug users. PMID:20650518

  5. Considerations of the chemical biology of microbial natural products provide an effective drug discovery strategy.

    PubMed

    Choi, Hyukjae; Oh, Dong-Chan

    2015-09-01

    Conventional approaches to natural product drug discovery rely mainly on random searches for bioactive compounds using bioassays. These traditional approaches do not incorporate a chemical biology perspective. Searching for bioactive molecules using a chemical and biological rationale constitutes a powerful search paradigm. Here, the authors review recent examples of the discovery of bioactive natural products based on chemical and biological interactions between hosts and symbionts, and propose this method provides a more effective means of exploring natural chemical diversity and eventually of discovering new drugs.

  6. Alkaloids from marine invertebrates as important leads for anticancer drugs discovery and development.

    PubMed

    Imperatore, Concetta; Aiello, Anna; D'Aniello, Filomena; Senese, Maria; Menna, Marialuisa

    2014-12-05

    The present review describes research on novel natural antitumor alkaloids isolated from marine invertebrates. The structure, origin, and confirmed cytotoxic activity of more than 130 novel alkaloids belonging to several structural families (indoles, pyrroles, pyrazines, quinolines, and pyridoacridines), together with some of their synthetic analogs, are illustrated. Recent discoveries concerning the current state of the potential and/or development of some of them as new drugs, as well as the current knowledge regarding their modes of action, are also summarized. A special emphasis is given to the role of marine invertebrate alkaloids as an important source of leads for anticancer drug discovery.

  7. Academic drug discovery centres: the economic and organisational sustainability of an emerging model.

    PubMed

    Schultz Kirkegaard, Henriette; Valentin, Finn

    2014-11-01

    Academic drug discovery centres (ADDCs) are seen as one of the solutions to fill the innovation gap in early drug discovery, which has proven challenging for previous organisational models. Prior studies of ADDCs have identified the need to analyse them from the angle of their economic and organisational sustainability. We take that angle in an in-depth study of four prominent ADDCs. Our findings indicate that there are clear similarities in the way sustainable centres are organised, managed and financed. We also identify factors in the frameworks of academia and research funding affecting their performance.

  8. Killing the hypnozoite – drug discovery approaches to prevent relapse in Plasmodium vivax

    PubMed Central

    Campo, Brice; Vandal, Omar; Wesche, David L.; Burrows, Jeremy N.

    2015-01-01

    The eradication of malaria will only be possible if effective, well-tolerated medicines kill hypnozoites in vivax and ovale malaria, and thus prevent relapses in patients. Despite progress in the 8-aminoquinoline series, with tafenoquine in Phase III showing clear benefits over primaquine, the drug discovery challenge to identify hypnozoiticidal or hypnozoite-activating compounds has been hampered by the dearth of biological tools and assays, which in turn has been limited by the immense scientific and logistical challenges associated with accessing relevant human tissue and sporozoites. This review summarises the existing drug discovery series and approaches concerning the goal to block relapse. PMID:25891812

  9. Open Access Target Validation Is a More Efficient Way to Accelerate Drug Discovery

    PubMed Central

    Lee, Wen Hwa

    2015-01-01

    There is a scarcity of novel treatments to address many unmet medical needs. Industry and academia are finally coming to terms with the fact that the prevalent models and incentives for innovation in early stage drug discovery are failing to promote progress quickly enough. Here we will examine how an open model of precompetitive public–private research partnership is enabling efficient derisking and acceleration in the early stages of drug discovery, whilst also widening the range of communities participating in the process, such as patient and disease foundations. PMID:26042736

  10. Drug Discovery via Human-Derived Stem Cell Organoids

    PubMed Central

    Liu, Fangkun; Huang, Jing; Ning, Bo; Liu, Zhixiong; Chen, Shen; Zhao, Wei

    2016-01-01

    Patient-derived cell lines and animal models have proven invaluable for the understanding of human intestinal diseases and for drug development although both inherently comprise disadvantages and caveats. Many genetically determined intestinal diseases occur in specific tissue microenvironments that are not adequately modeled by monolayer cell culture. Likewise, animal models incompletely recapitulate the complex pathologies of intestinal diseases of humans and fall short in predicting the effects of candidate drugs. Patient-derived stem cell organoids are new and effective models for the development of novel targeted therapies. With the use of intestinal organoids from patients with inherited diseases, the potency and toxicity of drug candidates can be evaluated better. Moreover, owing to the novel clustered regularly interspaced short palindromic repeats/CRISPR-associated protein-9 genome-editing technologies, researchers can use organoids to precisely modulate human genetic status and identify pathogenesis-related genes of intestinal diseases. Therefore, here we discuss how patient-derived organoids should be grown and how advanced genome-editing tools may be applied to research on modeling of cancer and infectious diseases. We also highlight practical applications of organoids ranging from basic studies to drug screening and precision medicine. PMID:27713700

  11. Strategies to address low drug solubility in discovery and development.

    PubMed

    Williams, Hywel D; Trevaskis, Natalie L; Charman, Susan A; Shanker, Ravi M; Charman, William N; Pouton, Colin W; Porter, Christopher J H

    2013-01-01

    Drugs with low water solubility are predisposed to low and variable oral bioavailability and, therefore, to variability in clinical response. Despite significant efforts to "design in" acceptable developability properties (including aqueous solubility) during lead optimization, approximately 40% of currently marketed compounds and most current drug development candidates remain poorly water-soluble. The fact that so many drug candidates of this type are advanced into development and clinical assessment is testament to an increasingly sophisticated understanding of the approaches that can be taken to promote apparent solubility in the gastrointestinal tract and to support drug exposure after oral administration. Here we provide a detailed commentary on the major challenges to the progression of a poorly water-soluble lead or development candidate and review the approaches and strategies that can be taken to facilitate compound progression. In particular, we address the fundamental principles that underpin the use of strategies, including pH adjustment and salt-form selection, polymorphs, cocrystals, cosolvents, surfactants, cyclodextrins, particle size reduction, amorphous solid dispersions, and lipid-based formulations. In each case, the theoretical basis for utility is described along with a detailed review of recent advances in the field. The article provides an integrated and contemporary discussion of current approaches to solubility and dissolution enhancement but has been deliberately structured as a series of stand-alone sections to allow also directed access to a specific technology (e.g., solid dispersions, lipid-based formulations, or salt forms) where required.

  12. Inflammation in atherosclerosis: new opportunities for drug discovery.

    PubMed

    Meng, Charles Q

    2005-01-01

    Many lines of evidence indicate that inflammation is the ultimate cause of atherosclerosis; high cholesterol levels cause atherosclerosis through mechanism of inflammation. Drugs designed to address inflammatory aspects of atherosclerosis will likely be more effective than current therapies in treating and preventing coronary artery disease. PMID:15638790

  13. New natural products as new leads for antibacterial drug discovery.

    PubMed

    Brown, Dean G; Lister, Troy; May-Dracka, Tricia L

    2014-01-15

    Natural products have been a rich source of antibacterial drugs for many decades, but investments in this area have declined over the past two decades. The purpose of this review article is to provide a recent survey of new natural product classes and the mechanisms by which they work. PMID:24388805

  14. Computational Discovery of Transcription Factors Associated With Drug Response

    PubMed Central

    Hanson, Casey; Cairns, Junmei; Wang, Liewei; Sinha, Saurabh

    2015-01-01

    This study integrates gene expression, genotype, and drug response data in lymphoblastoid cell lines with transcription factor (TF) binding sites from ENCODE, in a novel methodology that elucidates regulatory contexts associated with cytotoxicity. The method, GENMi, postulates that SNPs within TF binding sites putatively modulate its regulatory activity, and the resulting variation in gene expression leads to variation in drug response. Analysis of 161 TFs and 24 treatments revealed 334 significantly associated TF-treatment pairs. Investigation of 20 selected pairs yielded literature support for 13 of these associations, often from studies where perturbation of the TF’s expression changes drug response. Experimental validation of significant GENMi associations in taxanes and anthracyclines across two triple negative breast cancer cell lines corroborates our findings. The method is shown to be more sensitive than an alternative, GWAS-based approach that does not use gene expression. These results demonstrate GENMi’s utility in identifying TFs that influence drug response and provide a number of candidates for further testing. PMID:26503816

  15. System-level multi-target drug discovery from natural products with applications to cardiovascular diseases.

    PubMed

    Zheng, Chunli; Wang, Jinan; Liu, Jianling; Pei, Mengjie; Huang, Chao; Wang, Yonghua

    2014-08-01

    The term systems pharmacology describes a field of study that uses computational and experimental approaches to broaden the view of drug actions rooted in molecular interactions and advance the process of drug discovery. The aim of this work is to stick out the role that the systems pharmacology plays across the multi-target drug discovery from natural products for cardiovascular diseases (CVDs). Firstly, based on network pharmacology methods, we reconstructed the drug-target and target-target networks to determine the putative protein target set of multi-target drugs for CVDs treatment. Secondly, we reintegrated a compound dataset of natural products and then obtained a multi-target compounds subset by virtual-screening process. Thirdly, a drug-likeness evaluation was applied to find the ADME-favorable compounds in this subset. Finally, we conducted in vitro experiments to evaluate the reliability of the selected chemicals and targets. We found that four of the five randomly selected natural molecules can effectively act on the target set for CVDs, indicating the reasonability of our systems-based method. This strategy may serve as a new model for multi-target drug discovery of complex diseases.

  16. Psychiatric Distress, Drug Use, and HIV Viral Load Suppression in Russia.

    PubMed

    Ustinov, A; Suvorova, A; Belyakov, A; Makhamatova, A; Levina, O; Krupitsky, E; Lioznov, D; Niccolai, L; Heimer, R

    2016-08-01

    To explore the influence of psychiatric distress and substance use on viral load suppression in HIV-infected patients taking ART we analyzed socio-demographic characteristics, CD4+ cells count and viral loads, the Symptom Check List-90 and the Addiction Severity Index of 75 patients who had taken ART for at least 6 month. Using viral load data as the marker of ART success, we divided the sample into two groups. Comparison of the groups showed that education, marriage, and female gender are predictors of optimal viral load suppression. Overall results failed to demonstrate substance use and psychiatric distress as predictors of viral load suppression. PMID:26809193

  17. Beyond Membrane Protein Structure: Drug Discovery, Dynamics and Difficulties.

    PubMed

    Biggin, Philip C; Aldeghi, Matteo; Bodkin, Michael J; Heifetz, Alexander

    2016-01-01

    Most of the previous content of this book has focused on obtaining the structures of membrane proteins. In this chapter we explore how those structures can be further used in two key ways. The first is their use in structure based drug design (SBDD) and the second is how they can be used to extend our understanding of their functional activity via the use of molecular dynamics. Both aspects now heavily rely on computations. This area is vast, and alas, too large to consider in depth in a single book chapter. Thus where appropriate we have referred the reader to recent reviews for deeper assessment of the field. We discuss progress via the use of examples from two main drug target areas; G-protein coupled receptors (GPCRs) and ion channels. We end with a discussion of some of the main challenges in the area. PMID:27553242

  18. Beyond Membrane Protein Structure: Drug Discovery, Dynamics and Difficulties.

    PubMed

    Biggin, Philip C; Aldeghi, Matteo; Bodkin, Michael J; Heifetz, Alexander

    2016-01-01

    Most of the previous content of this book has focused on obtaining the structures of membrane proteins. In this chapter we explore how those structures can be further used in two key ways. The first is their use in structure based drug design (SBDD) and the second is how they can be used to extend our understanding of their functional activity via the use of molecular dynamics. Both aspects now heavily rely on computations. This area is vast, and alas, too large to consider in depth in a single book chapter. Thus where appropriate we have referred the reader to recent reviews for deeper assessment of the field. We discuss progress via the use of examples from two main drug target areas; G-protein coupled receptors (GPCRs) and ion channels. We end with a discussion of some of the main challenges in the area.

  19. ROR nuclear receptors: structures, related diseases, and drug discovery

    PubMed Central

    Zhang, Yan; Luo, Xiao-yu; Wu, Dong-hai; Xu, Yong

    2015-01-01

    Nuclear receptors (NRs) are ligand-regulated transcription factors that regulate metabolism, development and immunity. The NR superfamily is one of the major classes of drug targets for human diseases. Retinoic acid receptor-related orphan receptor (ROR) α, β and γ belong to the NR superfamily, and these receptors are still considered as 'orphan' receptors because the identification of their endogenous ligands has been controversial. Recent studies have demonstrated that these receptors are regulated by synthetic ligands, thus emerge as important drug targets for the treatment of multiple sclerosis, rheumatoid arthritis, psoriasis, etc. Studying the structural basis and ligand development of RORs will pave the way for a better understanding of the roles of these receptors in human diseases. Here, we review the structural basis, disease relevance, strategies for ligand identification, and current status of development of therapeutic ligands for RORs. PMID:25500868

  20. Hydrophobicity – Shake Flasks, Protein Folding and Drug Discovery

    PubMed Central

    Sarkar, Aurijit; Kellogg, Glen E.

    2009-01-01

    Hydrophobic interactions are some of the most important interactions in nature. They are the primary driving force in a number of phenomena. This is mostly an entropic effect and can account for a number of biophysical events such as protein-protein or protein-ligand binding that are of immense importance in drug design. The earliest studies on this phenomenon can be dated back to the end of the 19th century when Meyer and Overton independently correlated the hydrophobic nature of gases to their anesthetic potency. Since then, significant progress has been made in this realm of science. This review briefly traces the history of hydrophobicity research along with the theoretical estimation of partition coefficients. Finally, the application of hydrophobicity estimation methods in the field of drug design and protein folding is discussed. PMID:19929828

  1. Structure-based drug discovery of carbonic anhydrase inhibitors.

    PubMed

    Supuran, Claudiu T

    2012-12-01

    Inhibition of the metalloenzyme carbonic anhydrase (CA; EC 4.2.1.1) has pharmacologic applications in the field of anti-glaucoma, anti-convulsant and anti-cancer agents. But recently, it has also emerged that these enzymes have the potential for designing anti-infective drugs (anti-fungal and anti-bacterial agents) with a novel mechanism of action. Sulphonamides and their isosteres (sulphamates/sulphamides) constitute the main class of CA inhibitors (CAIs), which bind to the metal ion from the enzyme active site. Recently, the dithiocarbamates (DTCs), possessing a similar mechanism of action, were reported as a new class of inhibitors. These types of CAIs will be discussed in detail in this review. Novel drug design strategies have been reported ultimately based on the tail approach for obtaining sulphonamides/DTCs, which exploit more external binding regions within the enzyme active site (in addition to coordination to the metal ion), leading thus to isoform-selective compounds. Most of the promising data have been obtained by combining x-ray crystallography of enzyme-inhibitor adducts with novel synthetic approaches for generating chemical diversity. Whereas sulphonamide - NO donating hybrid drugs were reported as effective anti-glaucoma agents, most of the interesting new inhibitors were designed for inhibiting specifically the tumour-associated isoforms CA IX and XII, validated targets for imaging and treatment of hypoxic tumours. Promising compounds that inhibit CAs from bacterial and fungal pathogens, of the DTC and carboxylate types, will be also reviewed. PMID:22468747

  2. The pre-clinical discovery of Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis Drugs

    PubMed Central

    Glicksman, Marcie A.

    2012-01-01

    Introduction Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis, also referred to as Lou Gehrig’s disease is characterized by the progressive loss of cells in the brain and spinal cord that leads to debilitation and death in 3–5 years. Only one therapeutic drug, Riluzole, has been approved for ALS and that drug improves survival by 2–3 months. The need for new therapeutics, either that can postpone or slow the progression of the motor deficits and prolong survival, is still a strong unmet medical need. Areas Covered Although there are a number of drugs currently in clinical trials for ALS, this review provides an overview of the most promising biological targets and preclinical strategies that are currently being developed and deployed. The list of targets for ALS was compiled from a variety of websites including: individual companies that have ALS programs, and the author’s experience. Expert Opinion Progress is being made in the identification of possible new therapeutics for ALS with recent efforts in: understanding the genetic causes of the disease, susceptibility factors, and the development of additional preclinical animal models. However, many challenges remain in the identification of new ALS therapeutics including: the use of relevant biomarkers, the need for earlier diagnosis of the disease, and additional animal models. Multiple strategies need to be tested, in the clinic, in order to determine what will be effective in patients. PMID:22646982

  3. The impact of natural products upon modern drug discovery.

    PubMed

    Ganesan, A

    2008-06-01

    In the period 1970-2006, a total of 24 unique natural products were discovered that led to an approved drug. We analyze these successful leads in terms of drug-like properties, and show that they can be divided into two equal subsets. The first falls in the 'Lipinski universe' and complies with the Rule of Five. The second is a 'parallel universe' that violates the rules. Nevertheless, the latter compounds remain largely compliant in terms of logP and H-bond donors, highlighting the importance of these two metrics in predicting bioavailability. Natural products are often cited as an exception to Lipinski's rules. We believe this is because nature has learned to maintain low hydrophobicity and intermolecular H-bond donating potential when it needs to make biologically active compounds with high molecular weight and large numbers of rotatable bonds. In addition, natural products are more likely than purely synthetic compounds to resemble biosynthetic intermediates or endogenous metabolites, and hence take advantage of active transport mechanisms. Interestingly, the natural product leads in the Lipinski and parallel universe had an identical success rate (50%) in delivering an oral drug.

  4. The economics of drug discovery and the ultimate valuation of pharmacotherapies in the marketplace.

    PubMed

    Sollano, J A; Kirsch, J M; Bala, M V; Chambers, M G; Harpole, L H

    2008-08-01

    Although it is commonly believed that the innovation of new medicines is of paramount importance for improving the health and quality of life of patients, there is also a keen recognition regarding upward-spiraling costs of innovation, drug discovery, and drug development against a backdrop of dwindling successes in research and development (R&D) efforts. We propose a new model of valuation of pharmacotherapies that attempts to secure an adequate return on investment in innovation by ensuring optimal pricing and reimbursement.

  5. A High-Throughput Screen for Antibiotic Drug Discovery

    PubMed Central

    Scanlon, Thomas C.; Dostal, Sarah M.; Griswold, Karl E.

    2014-01-01

    We describe an ultra-high-throughput screening platform enabling discovery and/or engineering of natural product antibiotics. The methodology involves creation of hydrogel-in-oil emulsions in which recombinant microorganisms are co-emulsified with bacterial pathogens; antibiotic activity is assayed by use of a fluorescent viability dye. We have successfully utilized both bulk emulsification and microfluidic technology for the generation of hydrogel microdroplets that are size-compatible with conventional flow cytometry. Hydrogel droplets are ~25 pL in volume, and can be synthesized and sorted at rates exceeding 3,000 drops/s. Using this technique, we have achieved screening throughputs exceeding 5 million clones/day. Proof-of-concept experiments demonstrate efficient selection of antibiotic-secreting yeast from a vast excess of negative controls. In addition, we have successfully used this technique to screen a metagenomic library for secreted antibiotics that kill the human pathogen Staphylococcus aureus. Our results establish the practical utility of the screening platform, and we anticipate that the accessible nature of our methods will enable others seeking to identify and engineer the next generation of antibacterial biomolecules. PMID:23955804

  6. Synthetic biology approaches in drug discovery and pharmaceutical biotechnology

    PubMed Central

    2010-01-01

    Synthetic biology is the attempt to apply the concepts of engineering to biological systems with the aim to create organisms with new emergent properties. These organisms might have desirable novel biosynthetic capabilities, act as biosensors or help us to understand the intricacies of living systems. This approach has the potential to assist the discovery and production of pharmaceutical compounds at various stages. New sources of bioactive compounds can be created in the form of genetically encoded small molecule libraries. The recombination of individual parts has been employed to design proteins that act as biosensors, which could be used to identify and quantify molecules of interest. New biosynthetic pathways may be designed by stitching together enzymes with desired activities, and genetic code expansion can be used to introduce new functionalities into peptides and proteins to increase their chemical scope and biological stability. This review aims to give an insight into recently developed individual components and modules that might serve as parts in a synthetic biology approach to pharmaceutical biotechnology. PMID:20396881

  7. Psychiatric Diagnoses and Concomitant Drug Treatment in the Early Childhood Special Education Population

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Totten, Sara; Frankenberger, William; Stroh, Jennifer

    2008-01-01

    The purpose of this study was to determine the types of psychiatric disorders and the corresponding medications prescribed to children enrolled in Early Childhood Special Education Programs (ECSE) and to ascertain teacher attitudes related to this topic. Data were collected via surveys disseminated to five hundred-twenty five Early Childhood…

  8. Adolescent Attitudes toward Psychiatric Medication: The Utility of the Drug Attitude Inventory

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Townsend, Lisa; Floersch, Jerry; Findling, Robert L.

    2009-01-01

    Background: Despite the effectiveness of psychotropic treatment for alleviating symptoms of psychiatric disorders, youth adherence to psychotropic medication regimens is low. Adolescent adherence rates range from 10-80% (Swanson, 2003; Cromer & Tarnowski, 1989; Lloyd et al., 1998; Brown, Borden, and Clingerman, 1985; Sleator, 1985) depending on…

  9. Precision multidimensional assay for high-throughput microRNA drug discovery.

    PubMed

    Haefliger, Benjamin; Prochazka, Laura; Angelici, Bartolomeo; Benenson, Yaakov

    2016-01-01

    Development of drug discovery assays that combine high content with throughput is challenging. Information-processing gene networks can address this challenge by integrating multiple potential targets of drug candidates' activities into a small number of informative readouts, reporting simultaneously on specific and non-specific effects. Here we show a family of networks implementing this concept in a cell-based drug discovery assay for miRNA drug targets. The networks comprise multiple modules reporting on specific effects towards an intended miRNA target, together with non-specific effects on gene expression, off-target miRNAs and RNA interference pathway. We validate the assays using known perturbations of on- and off-target miRNAs, and evaluate an ∼700 compound library in an automated screen with a follow-up on specific and non-specific hits. We further customize and validate assays for additional drug targets and non-specific inputs. Our study offers a novel framework for precision drug discovery assays applicable to diverse target families. PMID:26880188

  10. COMPUTER-AIDED DRUG DISCOVERY AND DEVELOPMENT (CADDD): in silico-chemico-biological approach

    PubMed Central

    Kapetanovic, I.M.

    2008-01-01

    It is generally recognized that drug discovery and development are very time and resources consuming processes. There is an ever growing effort to apply computational power to the combined chemical and biological space in order to streamline drug discovery, design, development and optimization. In biomedical arena, computer-aided or in silico design is being utilized to expedite and facilitate hit identification, hit-to-lead selection, optimize the absorption, distribution, metabolism, excretion and toxicity profile and avoid safety issues. Commonly used computational approaches include ligand-based drug design (pharmacophore, a 3-D spatial arrangement of chemical features essential for biological activity), structure-based drug design (drug-target docking), and quantitative structure-activity and quantitative structure-property relationships. Regulatory agencies as well as pharmaceutical industry are actively involved in development of computational tools that will improve effectiveness and efficiency of drug discovery and development process, decrease use of animals, and increase predictability. It is expected that the power of CADDD will grow as the technology continues to evolve. PMID:17229415

  11. Precision multidimensional assay for high-throughput microRNA drug discovery.

    PubMed

    Haefliger, Benjamin; Prochazka, Laura; Angelici, Bartolomeo; Benenson, Yaakov

    2016-01-01

    Development of drug discovery assays that combine high content with throughput is challenging. Information-processing gene networks can address this challenge by integrating multiple potential targets of drug candidates' activities into a small number of informative readouts, reporting simultaneously on specific and non-specific effects. Here we show a family of networks implementing this concept in a cell-based drug discovery assay for miRNA drug targets. The networks comprise multiple modules reporting on specific effects towards an intended miRNA target, together with non-specific effects on gene expression, off-target miRNAs and RNA interference pathway. We validate the assays using known perturbations of on- and off-target miRNAs, and evaluate an ∼700 compound library in an automated screen with a follow-up on specific and non-specific hits. We further customize and validate assays for additional drug targets and non-specific inputs. Our study offers a novel framework for precision drug discovery assays applicable to diverse target families.

  12. Reverse Pharmacognosy and Reverse Pharmacology; Two Closely Related Approaches for Drug Discovery Development.

    PubMed

    Saeidnia, Soodabeh; Gohari, Ahmad R; Manayi, Azadeh

    2016-01-01

    Pharmacognosy is a science, which study natural products as a source of new drug leads and effective drug development. Rational and economic search for novel lead structures could maximize the speed of drug discovery by using powerful high technology methods. Reverse pharmacognosy, a complementary to pharmacognosy, couples the high throughput screening (HTS), virtual screening and databases along with the knowledge of traditional medicines. These strategies lead to identification of numerous in vitro active and selective hits enhancing the speed of drug discovery from natural sources. Besides, reverse pharmacology is a target base drug discovery approach; in the first step, a hypothesis is made that the alteration of specific protein activity will produce beneficial curative effects. Both, reverse pharmacognosy and reverse pharmacology take advantages of high technology methods to accomplish their particular purposes. Moreover, reverse pharmacognosy effectively utilize traditional medicines and natural products as promising sources to provide new drug leads as well as promote the rational use of them by using valuable information like protein structure databases and chemical libraries which prepare pharmacological profile of traditional medicine, plant extract or natural compounds. PMID:27396403

  13. Precision multidimensional assay for high-throughput microRNA drug discovery

    PubMed Central

    Haefliger, Benjamin; Prochazka, Laura; Angelici, Bartolomeo; Benenson, Yaakov

    2016-01-01

    Development of drug discovery assays that combine high content with throughput is challenging. Information-processing gene networks can address this challenge by integrating multiple potential targets of drug candidates' activities into a small number of informative readouts, reporting simultaneously on specific and non-specific effects. Here we show a family of networks implementing this concept in a cell-based drug discovery assay for miRNA drug targets. The networks comprise multiple modules reporting on specific effects towards an intended miRNA target, together with non-specific effects on gene expression, off-target miRNAs and RNA interference pathway. We validate the assays using known perturbations of on- and off-target miRNAs, and evaluate an ∼700 compound library in an automated screen with a follow-up on specific and non-specific hits. We further customize and validate assays for additional drug targets and non-specific inputs. Our study offers a novel framework for precision drug discovery assays applicable to diverse target families. PMID:26880188

  14. Assessment of drug metabolism enzyme and transporter pharmacogenetics in drug discovery and early development: perspectives of the I-PWG.

    PubMed

    Brian, William; Tremaine, Larry M; Arefayene, Million; de Kanter, Ruben; Evers, Raymond; Guo, Yingying; Kalabus, James; Lin, Wen; Loi, Cho-Ming; Xiao, Guangqing

    2016-04-01

    Genetic variants of drug metabolism enzymes and transporters can result in high pharmacokinetic and pharmacodynamic variability, unwanted characteristics of efficacious and safe drugs. Ideally, the contributions of these enzymes and transporters to drug disposition can be predicted from in vitro experiments and in silico modeling in discovery or early development, and then be utilized during clinical development. Recently, regulatory agencies have provided guidance on the preclinical investigation of pharmacogenetics, for application to clinical drug development. This white paper summarizes the results of an industry survey conducted by the Industry Pharmacogenomics Working Group on current practice and challenges with using in vitro systems and in silico models to understand pharmacogenetic causes of variability in drug disposition.

  15. [From the discovery of antibiotics to emerging highly drug-resistant bacteria].

    PubMed

    Meunier, Olivier

    2015-01-01

    The discovery of antibiotics has enabled serious infections to be treated. However, bacteria resistant to several families of antibiotics and the emergence of new highly drug-resistant bacteria constitute a public health issue in France and across the world. Actions to prevent their transmission are being put in place.

  16. Diversity-oriented synthetic strategies applied to cancer chemical biology and drug discovery.

    PubMed

    Collins, Ian; Jones, Alan M

    2014-01-01

    How can diversity-oriented strategies for chemical synthesis provide chemical tools to help shape our understanding of complex cancer pathways and progress anti-cancer drug discovery efforts? This review (surveying the literature from 2003 to the present) considers the applications of diversity-oriented synthesis (DOS), biology-oriented synthesis (BIOS) and associated strategies to cancer biology and drug discovery, summarising the syntheses of novel and often highly complex scaffolds from pluripotent or synthetically versatile building blocks. We highlight the role of diversity-oriented synthetic strategies in producing new chemical tools to interrogate cancer biology pathways through the assembly of relevant libraries and their application to phenotypic and biochemical screens. The use of diversity-oriented strategies to explore structure-activity relationships in more advanced drug discovery projects is discussed. We show how considering appropriate and variable focus in library design has provided a spectrum of DOS approaches relevant at all stages in anti-cancer drug discovery. PMID:25350364

  17. Four lessons from global health drug discovery: medicine for an ailing industry?

    PubMed

    Elliott, Richard L

    2012-09-13

    In recent years, the pharmaceutical industry has faced many challenges to its business model, undergoing tremendous change and turmoil to survive. Are there any lessons to be drawn from drug discovery focused on Global Health, where there is little market incentive?

  18. The future of drug discovery: enabling technologies for enhancing lead characterization and profiling therapeutic potential.

    PubMed

    Janero, David R

    2014-08-01

    Technology often serves as a handmaiden and catalyst of invention. The discovery of safe, effective medications depends critically upon experimental approaches capable of providing high-impact information on the biological effects of drug candidates early in the discovery pipeline. This information can enable reliable lead identification, pharmacological compound differentiation and successful translation of research output into clinically useful therapeutics. The shallow preclinical profiling of candidate compounds promulgates a minimalistic understanding of their biological effects and undermines the level of value creation necessary for finding quality leads worth moving forward within the development pipeline with efficiency and prognostic reliability sufficient to help remediate the current pharma-industry productivity drought. Three specific technologies discussed herein, in addition to experimental areas intimately associated with contemporary drug discovery, appear to hold particular promise for strengthening the preclinical valuation of drug candidates by deepening lead characterization. These are: i) hydrogen-deuterium exchange mass spectrometry for characterizing structural and ligand-interaction dynamics of disease-relevant proteins; ii) activity-based chemoproteomics for profiling the functional diversity of mammalian proteomes; and iii) nuclease-mediated precision gene editing for developing more translatable cellular and in vivo models of human diseases. When applied in an informed manner congruent with the clinical understanding of disease processes, technologies such as these that span levels of biological organization can serve as valuable enablers of drug discovery and potentially contribute to reducing the current, unacceptably high rates of compound clinical failure. PMID:24965547

  19. CRIMALDDI: a prioritized research agenda to expedite the discovery of new anti-malarial drugs

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    The CRIMALDDI Consortium has been a three-year project funded by the EU Framework Seven Programme. It aimed to develop a prioritized set of recommendations to speed up anti-malarial drug discovery research and contribute to the setting of the global research agenda. It has attempted to align thinking on the high priority issues and then to develop action plans and strategies to address these issues. Through a series of facilitated and interactive workshops, it has concluded that these priorities can be grouped under five key themes: attacking artemisinin resistance; creating and sharing community resources; delivering enabling technologies; exploiting high throughput screening hits quickly; and, identifying novel targets. Recommendations have been prioritized into one of four levels: quick wins; removing key roadblocks to future progress; speeding-up drug discovery; and, nice to have (but not essential). Use of this prioritization allows efforts and resources to be focused on the lines of work that will contribute most to expediting anti-malarial drug discovery. Estimates of the time and finances required to implement the recommendations have also been made, along with indications of when recommendations within each theme will make an impact. All of this has been collected into an indicative roadmap that, it is hoped, will guide decisions about the direction and focus of European anti-malarial drug discovery research and contribute to the setting of the global research agenda. PMID:24191947

  20. Discovery of the target for immunomodulatory drugs (IMiDs).

    PubMed

    Ito, Takumi; Ando, Hideki; Handa, Hiroshi

    2016-05-01

    Half a century ago, the sedative thalidomide caused a serious drug disaster because of its teratogenicity and was withdrawn from the market. However, thalidomide, which has returned to the market, is now used for the treatment of leprosy and multiple myeloma (MM) under strict control. The mechanism of thalidomide action had been a long-standing question. We developed a new affinity bead technology and identified cereblon (CRBN) as a thalidomide-binding protein. We found that CRBN functions as a substrate receptor of an E3 cullin-Ring ligase complex 4 (CRL4) and is a primary target of thalidomide teratogenicity. Recently, new thalidomide derivatives, called immunomodulatory drugs (IMiDs), have been developed by Celgene. Among them, lenalidomide (Len) and pomalidomide (Pom) were shown to exert strong therapeutic effects against MM. It was found that Len and Pom both bind CRBN-CRL4 and recruit neomorphic substrates (Ikaros and Aiolos). More recently it was reported that casein kinase 1a (Ck1a) was identified as a substrate for CRBN-CRL4 in the presence of Len, but not Pom. Ck1a breakdown explains why Len is specifically effective for myelodysplastic syndrome with 5q deletion. It is now proposed that binding of IMiDs to CRBN appears to alter the substrate specificity of CRBN-CRL4. In this review, we introduce recent findings on IMiDs.

  1. MicroRNA in neurodegenerative drug discovery: the way forward?

    PubMed

    Campbell, Kristyn; Booth, Stephanie A

    2015-01-01

    Neurodegenerative diseases occur when neuronal cells in the brain or spinal cord progressively lose function and eventually die. Pathological analysis of these tissues reveals changes that include the loss of synapses, tangles of misfolded protein and immune cell activation, even during very early stages of disease well before debilitating clinical signs are apparent. This suggests that if neurodegeneration is treated early enough, drugs designed to delay the progress of these diseases by either repairing the early damage and loss of neurons, or protecting neuron functionality from further insult, may be efficacious. MicroRNAs (miRNAs) are small non-coding RNAs that can post-transcriptionally regulate gene expression. They are particularly numerous within neurons where many are expressed with high specificity, which suggests that they have important roles in the healthy brain. Indeed, miRNAs are essential for the post-mitotic survival of neurons, implying a crucial role in survival and neuroprotection. This has focused attention on exploring the use of miRNA-based drugs as a means to correct cellular abnormalities and maintain neuronal function in neurodegenerative diseases. These efforts are spurred on by the rapid progress to clinical trials for a number of miRNA-based therapies for other diseases such as cardiovascular diseases, fibrosis and cancer.

  2. Approaches of targeting Rho GTPases in cancer drug discovery

    PubMed Central

    Lin, Yuan; Zheng, Yi

    2016-01-01

    Introduction Rho GTPases are master regulators of actomyosin structure and dynamics and play pivotal roles in a variety of cellular processes including cell morphology, gene transcription, cell cycle progression and cell adhesion. Because aberrant Rho GTPase signaling activities are widely associated with human cancer, key components of Rho GTPase signaling pathways have attracted increasing interest as potential therapeutic targets. Similar to Ras, Rho GTPases themselves were, until recently, deemed “undruggable” because of structure-function considerations. Several approaches to interfere with Rho GTPase signaling have been explored and show promise as new ways for tackling cancer cells. Areas covered This review focuses on the recent progress in targeting the signaling activities of three prototypical Rho GTPases, i.e. RhoA, Rac1, and Cdc42. The authors describe the involvement of these Rho GTPases, their key regulators and effectors in cancer. Furthermore, the authors discuss the current approaches for rationally targeting aberrant Rho GTPases along their signaling cascades, upstream and downstream of Rho GTPases and posttranslational modifications at a molecular level. Expert opinion To date, while no clinically effective drugs targeting Rho GTPase signaling for cancer treatment are available, tool compounds and lead drugs that pharmacologically inhibit Rho GTPase pathways have shown promise. Small molecule inhibitors targeting Rho GTPase signaling may add new treatment options for future precision cancer therapy, particularly in combination with other anti-cancer agents. PMID:26087073

  3. Structural Mechanisms and Drug Discovery Prospects of Rho GTPases.

    PubMed

    Smithers, Cameron C; Overduin, Michael

    2016-06-13

    Rho GTPases regulate cellular morphology and dynamics, and some are key drivers of cancer progression. This superfamily offers attractive potential targets for therapeutic intervention, with RhoA, Rac1 and Cdc42 being prime examples. The challenges in developing agents that act on these signaling enzymes include the lack of obvious druggable pockets and their membrane-bound activities. However, progress in targeting the similar Ras protein is illuminating new strategies for specifically inhibiting oncogenic GTPases. The structures of multiple signaling and regulatory states of Rho proteins have been determined, and the post-translational modifications including acylation and phosphorylation points have been mapped and their functional effects examined. The development of inhibitors to probe the significance of overexpression and mutational hyperactivation of these GTPases underscores their importance in cancer progression. The ability to integrate in silico, in vitro, and in vivo investigations of drug-like molecules indicates the growing tractability of GTPase systems for lead optimization. Although no Rho-targeted drug molecules have yet been clinically approved, this family is clearly showing increasing promise for the development of precision medicine and combination cancer therapies.

  4. Glycosomal targets for anti-trypanosomatid drug discovery.

    PubMed

    Barros-Alvarez, X; Gualdrón-López, M; Acosta, H; Cáceres, A J; Graminha, M A S; Michels, P A M; Concepción, J L; Quiñones, W

    2014-01-01

    Glycosomes are peroxisome-related organelles found in all kinetoplastid protists, including the human pathogenic species of the family Trypanosomatidae: Trypanosoma brucei, Trypanosoma cruzi and Leishmania spp. Glycosomes are unique in containing the majority of the glycolytic/gluconeogenic enzymes, but they also possess enzymes of several other important catabolic and anabolic pathways. The different metabolic processes are connected by shared cofactors and some metabolic intermediates, and their relative importance differs between the parasites or their distinct lifecycle stages, dependent on the environmental conditions encountered. By genetic or chemical means, a variety of glycosomal enzymes participating in different processes have been validated as drug targets. For several of these enzymes, as well as others that are likely crucial for proliferation, viability or virulence of the parasites, inhibitors have been obtained by different approaches such as compound libraries screening or design and synthesis. The efficacy and selectivity of some initially obtained inhibitors of parasite enzymes were further optimized by structure-activity relationship analysis, using available protein crystal structures. Several of the inhibitors cause growth inhibition of the clinically relevant stages of one or more parasitic trypanosomatid species and in some cases exert therapeutic effects in infected animals. The integrity of glycosomes and proper compartmentalization of at least several matrix enzymes is also crucial for the viability of the parasites. Therefore, proteins involved in the assembly of the organelles and transmembrane passage of substrates and products of glycosomal metabolism offer also promise as drug targets. Natural products with trypanocidal activity by affecting glycosomal integrity have been reported.

  5. Structural Mechanisms and Drug Discovery Prospects of Rho GTPases

    PubMed Central

    Smithers, Cameron C.; Overduin, Michael

    2016-01-01

    Rho GTPases regulate cellular morphology and dynamics, and some are key drivers of cancer progression. This superfamily offers attractive potential targets for therapeutic intervention, with RhoA, Rac1 and Cdc42 being prime examples. The challenges in developing agents that act on these signaling enzymes include the lack of obvious druggable pockets and their membrane-bound activities. However, progress in targeting the similar Ras protein is illuminating new strategies for specifically inhibiting oncogenic GTPases. The structures of multiple signaling and regulatory states of Rho proteins have been determined, and the post-translational modifications including acylation and phosphorylation points have been mapped and their functional effects examined. The development of inhibitors to probe the significance of overexpression and mutational hyperactivation of these GTPases underscores their importance in cancer progression. The ability to integrate in silico, in vitro, and in vivo investigations of drug-like molecules indicates the growing tractability of GTPase systems for lead optimization. Although no Rho-targeted drug molecules have yet been clinically approved, this family is clearly showing increasing promise for the development of precision medicine and combination cancer therapies. PMID:27304967

  6. Microfluidic Devices for Automation of Assays on Drosophila Melanogaster for Applications in Drug Discovery and Biological Studies.

    PubMed

    Ghaemi, Reza; Selvaganapathy, Ponnambalam R

    2016-01-01

    Drug discovery is a long and expensive process, which usually takes 12-15 years and could cost up to ~$1 billion. Conventional drug discovery process starts with high throughput screening and selection of drug candidates that bind to specific target associated with a disease condition. However, this process does not consider whether the chosen candidate is optimal not only for binding but also for ease of administration, distribution in the body, effect of metabolism and associated toxicity if any. A holistic approach, using model organisms early in the drug discovery process to select drug candidates that are optimal not only in binding but also suitable for administration, distribution and are not toxic is now considered as a viable way for lowering the cost and time associated with the drug discovery process. However, the conventional drug discovery assays using Drosophila are manual and required skill operator, which makes them expensive and not suitable for high-throughput screening. Recently, microfluidics has been used to automate many of the operations (e.g. sorting, positioning, drug delivery) associated with the Drosophila drug discovery assays and thereby increase their throughput. This review highlights recent microfluidic devices that have been developed for Drosophila assays with primary application towards drug discovery for human diseases. The microfluidic devices that have been reviewed in this paper are categorized based on the stage of the Drosophila that have been used. In each category, the microfluidic technologies behind each device are described and their potential biological applications are discussed.

  7. How academic labs can approach the drug discovery process as a way to synergize with big pharma.

    PubMed

    Loregian, Arianna; Palù, Giorgio

    2013-06-01

    While the pharmaceutical industry is facing highly challenging times, the academic drug discovery sector has the potential to contribute meaningfully to the discovery of novel drug targets and to the development of new mode-of-action therapeutics against a range of diseases, including rare and neglected diseases.

  8. Single-cell transcriptomics for drug target discovery.

    PubMed

    Spaethling, Jennifer M; Eberwine, James H

    2013-10-01

    Single cell sequencing is currently in its relative infancy although an unprecedented amount of information is already being generated. These techniques are providing new insight into intercellular variability as well as identification of previously unrecognized drug targets. As more groups are gaining an interest in this fruitful technique, new sample preparation techniques, sequencing platforms, and bioinformatics tools are being developed which only improve the quantity and quality of data generated in these studies. Great advancements in harvest (in vivo pipette), sample preparation, and sequencing (Illumina HiSeq 2500/MiSeq, Ion Torrent PGM, Pacific Biosciences RS) are allowing for previously untestable questions to be answered and for expanded accessibility of these technologies.

  9. In Vitro Transcription Assays and Their Application in Drug Discovery.

    PubMed

    Yang, Xiao; Ma, Cong

    2016-09-20

    In vitro transcription assays have been developed and widely used for many years to study the molecular mechanisms involved in transcription. This process requires multi-subunit DNA-dependent RNA polymerase (RNAP) and a series of transcription factors that act to modulate the activity of RNAP during gene expression. Sequencing gel electrophoresis of radiolabeled transcripts is used to provide detailed mechanistic information on how transcription proceeds and what parameters can affect it. In this paper we describe the protocol to study how the essential elongation factor NusA regulates transcriptional pausing, as well as a method to identify an antibacterial agent targeting transcription initiation through inhibition of RNAP holoenzyme formation. These methods can be used a as platform for the development of additional approaches to explore the mechanism of action of the transcription factors which still remain unclear, as well as new antibacterial agents targeting transcription which is an underutilized drug target in antibiotic research and development.

  10. Potential strategies for increasing drug-discovery productivity.

    PubMed

    Cumming, John G; Finlay, M Raymond V; Giordanetto, Fabrizio; Hemmerling, Martin; Lister, Troy; Sanganee, Hitesh; Waring, Michael J

    2014-04-01

    The productivity challenge facing the pharmaceutical industry is well documented. Strategies to improve productivity have mainly focused on enhancing efficiency, such as the application of Lean Six Sigma process improvement methods and the introduction of modeling and simulation in place of 'wet' experiments. While these strategies have their benefits, the real challenge is to improve effectiveness by reducing clinical failure rates. We advocate redesigning the screening cascade to identify and optimize novel compounds with improved efficacy against disease, not just with improved potency against the target. There should be greater use of disease-relevant phenotypic screens in conjunction with target-based assays to drive medicinal chemistry optimization. An opportunistic approach to polypharmacology is recommended. There should also be more emphasis on optimization of the molecular mechanism of action incorporating understanding of binding kinetics, consideration of covalent drug strategies and targeting allosteric modulators.

  11. Malaria in South America: a drug discovery perspective

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    The challenge of controlling and eventually eradicating malaria means that new tools are urgently needed. South America’s role in this fight spans both ends of the research and development spectrum: both as a continent capable of discovering and developing new medicines, and also as a continent with significant numbers of malaria patients. This article reviews the contribution of groups in the South American continent to the research and development of new medicines over the last decade. Therefore, the current situation of research targeting malaria control and eradication is discussed, including endemicity, geographical distribution, treatment, drug-resistance and diagnosis. This sets the scene for a review of efforts within South America to discover and optimize compounds with anti-malarial activity. PMID:23706107

  12. In Vitro Transcription Assays and Their Application in Drug Discovery.

    PubMed

    Yang, Xiao; Ma, Cong

    2016-01-01

    In vitro transcription assays have been developed and widely used for many years to study the molecular mechanisms involved in transcription. This process requires multi-subunit DNA-dependent RNA polymerase (RNAP) and a series of transcription factors that act to modulate the activity of RNAP during gene expression. Sequencing gel electrophoresis of radiolabeled transcripts is used to provide detailed mechanistic information on how transcription proceeds and what parameters can affect it. In this paper we describe the protocol to study how the essential elongation factor NusA regulates transcriptional pausing, as well as a method to identify an antibacterial agent targeting transcription initiation through inhibition of RNAP holoenzyme formation. These methods can be used a as platform for the development of additional approaches to explore the mechanism of action of the transcription factors which still remain unclear, as well as new antibacterial agents targeting transcription which is an underutilized drug target in antibiotic research and development. PMID:27684446

  13. Constellation pharmacology: a new paradigm for drug discovery.

    PubMed

    Teichert, Russell W; Schmidt, Eric W; Olivera, Baldomero M

    2015-01-01

    Constellation pharmacology is a cell-based high-content phenotypic-screening platform that utilizes subtype-selective pharmacological agents to elucidate the cell-specific combinations (constellations) of key signaling proteins that define specific cell types. Heterogeneous populations of native cells, in which the different individual cell types have been identified and characterized, are the foundation for this screening platform. Constellation pharmacology is useful for screening small molecules or for deconvoluting complex mixtures of biologically active natural products. This platform has been used to purify natural products and discover their molecular mechanisms. In the ongoing development of constellation pharmacology, there is a positive feedback loop between the pharmacological characterization of cell types and screening for new drug candidates. As constellation pharmacology is used to discover compounds with novel targeting-selectivity profiles, those new compounds then further help to elucidate the constellations of specific cell types, thereby increasing the content of this high-content platform.

  14. Isotope chemistry; a useful tool in the drug discovery arsenal.

    PubMed

    Elmore, Charles S; Bragg, Ryan A

    2015-01-15

    As Medicinal Chemists are responsible for the synthesis and optimization of compounds, they often provide intermediates for use by isotope chemistry. Nevertheless, there is generally an incomplete understanding of the critical factors involved in the labeling of compounds. The remit of an Isotope Chemistry group varies from company to company, but often includes the synthesis of compounds labeled with radioisotopes, especially H-3 and C-14 and occasionally I-125, and stable isotopes, especially H-2, C-13, and N-15. Often the remit will also include the synthesis of drug metabolites. The methods used to prepare radiolabeled compounds by Isotope Chemists have been reviewed relatively recently. However, the organization and utilization of Isotope Chemistry has not been discussed recently and will be reviewed herein.

  15. Ultrafast laser processing of drug particles in water for pharmaceutical discovery

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ding, Weimeng; Sylvestre, Jean-Philippe; Bouvier, Emmanuelle; Leclair, Grégoire; Meunier, Michel

    2014-01-01

    The laser fragmentation technique has been extensively used to produce inorganic nanoparticles, but its practice on organic materials, especially on drugs, is less common. Here, we briefly review the recent advances in laser micro-/nanonization of organic materials and the rationale of using laser fragmentation for drug discovery. We present our case studies of two drug models: fenofibrate and naproxen. Both drugs were fragmented in water with femtosecond (fs) laser and characterized in terms of particle size distribution and physicochemical properties. Effects of fs laser fragmentation were also compared with nanosecond (ns) laser fragmentation and with conventional media milling technique. Fs laser was more suitable to produce sub-micron size drug particles than ns laser, but degradation of drugs after nanonization was also more pronounced than micronization. Physicochemical transformations such as oxidation, hydration and amorphisation might occur during the laser-material interactions. Laser nanonization showed improved dissolution kinetics, similar to media milling. Unlike the conventional milling techniques, laser fragmentation enabled the treatment of minute amount (as small as several milligrams) of drugs with high efficiency, thus is a useful tool for particle size reduction during the early phases of drug discovery.

  16. Network-based drug discovery by integrating systems biology and computational technologies.

    PubMed

    Leung, Elaine L; Cao, Zhi-Wei; Jiang, Zhi-Hong; Zhou, Hua; Liu, Liang

    2013-07-01

    Network-based intervention has been a trend of curing systemic diseases, but it relies on regimen optimization and valid multi-target actions of the drugs. The complex multi-component nature of medicinal herbs may serve as valuable resources for network-based multi-target drug discovery due to its potential treatment effects by synergy. Recently, robustness of multiple systems biology platforms shows powerful to uncover molecular mechanisms and connections between the drugs and their targeting dynamic network. However, optimization methods of drug combination are insufficient, owning to lacking of tighter integration across multiple '-omics' databases. The newly developed algorithm- or network-based computational models can tightly integrate '-omics' databases and optimize combinational regimens of drug development, which encourage using medicinal herbs to develop into new wave of network-based multi-target drugs. However, challenges on further integration across the databases of medicinal herbs with multiple system biology platforms for multi-target drug optimization remain to the uncertain reliability of individual data sets, width and depth and degree of standardization of herbal medicine. Standardization of the methodology and terminology of multiple system biology and herbal database would facilitate the integration. Enhance public accessible databases and the number of research using system biology platform on herbal medicine would be helpful. Further integration across various '-omics' platforms and computational tools would accelerate development of network-based drug discovery and network medicine.

  17. Network-based drug discovery by integrating systems biology and computational technologies

    PubMed Central

    Leung, Elaine L.; Cao, Zhi-Wei; Jiang, Zhi-Hong; Zhou, Hua

    2013-01-01

    Network-based intervention has been a trend of curing systemic diseases, but it relies on regimen optimization and valid multi-target actions of the drugs. The complex multi-component nature of medicinal herbs may serve as valuable resources for network-based multi-target drug discovery due to its potential treatment effects by synergy. Recently, robustness of multiple systems biology platforms shows powerful to uncover molecular mechanisms and connections between the drugs and their targeting dynamic network. However, optimization methods of drug combination are insufficient, owning to lacking of tighter integration across multiple ‘-omics’ databases. The newly developed algorithm- or network-based computational models can tightly integrate ‘-omics’ databases and optimize combinational regimens of drug development, which encourage using medicinal herbs to develop into new wave of network-based multi-target drugs. However, challenges on further integration across the databases of medicinal herbs with multiple system biology platforms for multi-target drug optimization remain to the uncertain reliability of individual data sets, width and depth and degree of standardization of herbal medicine. Standardization of the methodology and terminology of multiple system biology and herbal database would facilitate the integration. Enhance public accessible databases and the number of research using system biology platform on herbal medicine would be helpful. Further integration across various ‘-omics’ platforms and computational tools would accelerate development of network-based drug discovery and network medicine. PMID:22877768

  18. Protein targets for structure-based anti-Mycobacterium tuberculosis drug discovery.

    PubMed

    Lou, Zhiyong; Zhang, Xiaoxue

    2010-05-01

    Mycobacterium tuberculosis, which belongs to the genus Mycobacterium, is the pathogenic agent for most tuberculosis (TB). As TB remains one of the most rampant infectious diseases, causing morbidity and death with emergence of multi-drug-resistant and extensively-drug-resistant forms, it is urgent to identify new drugs with novel targets to ensure future therapeutic success. In this regards, the structural genomics of M. tuberculosis provides important information to identify potential targets, perform biochemical assays, determine crystal structures in complex with potential inhibitor(s), reveal the key sites/residues for biological activity, and thus validate drug targets and discover novel drugs. In this review, we will discuss the recent progress on novel targets for structure-based anti-M. tuberculosis drug discovery.

  19. Co-occurring Psychiatric and Drug Use Disorders among Sexual Minority Men with Lifetime Alcohol Use Disorders

    PubMed Central

    Lee, Ji Hyun; Gamarel, Kristi E.; Kahler, Christopher W.; Marshall, Brandon D.; van den Berg, Jacob J.; Bryant, Kendall; Zaller, Nickolas D.; Operario, Don

    2015-01-01

    Background Emerging evidence indicates multiple health risks associated with harmful alcohol use among sexual minority men in the United States. In particular, sexual minority men with alcohol use disorders (AUD) might have greater co-occurring health problems compared with heterosexual men. We used nationally representative data to compare the prevalence of diagnostic co-occurring psychiatric disorders and drug use disorders (DUD) among sexual minority men with AUD compared with heterosexual males with a lifetime AUD diagnosis. Methods We analyzed data from 6,899 adult males with AUD participating in Wave 2 of the National Epidemiologic Survey on Alcohol and Related Conditions (NESARC). Using multiple logistic regressions, we compared the odds of lifetime diagnosis of mood disorders, anxiety disorders, and drug use disorders in sexual minority and heterosexual adult males with AUD. Results Of participants included in this analysis, 176 (2.6%) self-identified as a sexual minority. In adjusted analyses, sexual minority men with AUD were more likely than heterosexual men with AUD to have any mood disorder (including major depressive episode), any anxiety disorder (including panic disorder without agoraphobia, specific phobia, posttraumatic stress disorder, and generalized anxiety disorder), and lifetime DUD. Conclusions The elevated co-occurrence of psychiatric disorders and DUD among sexual minority men with AUD suggests that future research is warranted. A better understanding of the etiology of diagnostic co-occurring mental health and substance use disorders among sexual minority men in order to develop effective integrated prevention and treatment programs. PMID:25913886

  20. Liquid-based three-dimensional tumor models for cancer research and drug discovery

    PubMed Central

    Ham, Stephanie L; Joshi, Ramila; Thakuri, Pradip S

    2016-01-01

    Tumors are three-dimensional tissues where close contacts between cancer cells, intercellular interactions between cancer and stromal cells, adhesion of cancer cells to the extracellular matrix, and signaling of soluble factors modulate functions of cancer cells and their response to therapeutics. Three-dimensional cultures of cancer cells overcome limitations of traditionally used monolayer cultures and recreate essential characteristics of tumors such as spatial gradients of oxygen, growth factors, and metabolites and presence of necrotic, hypoxic, quiescent, and proliferative cells. As such, three-dimensional tumor models provide a valuable tool for cancer research and oncology drug discovery. Here, we describe different tumor models and primarily focus on a model known as tumor spheroid. We summarize different technologies of spheroid formation, and discuss the use of spheroids to address the influence of stromal fibroblasts and immune cells on cancer cells in tumor microenvironment, study cancer stem cells, and facilitate compound screening in the drug discovery process. We review major techniques for quantification of cellular responses to drugs and discuss challenges ahead to enable broad utility of tumor spheroids in research laboratories, integrate spheroid models into drug development and discovery pipeline, and use primary tumor cells for drug screening studies to realize personalized cancer treatment. PMID:27072562

  1. Structure-Based Drug Discovery for Prion Disease Using a Novel Binding Simulation.

    PubMed

    Ishibashi, Daisuke; Nakagaki, Takehiro; Ishikawa, Takeshi; Atarashi, Ryuichiro; Watanabe, Ken; Cruz, Felipe A; Hamada, Tsuyoshi; Nishida, Noriyuki

    2016-07-01

    The accumulation of abnormal prion protein (PrP(Sc)) converted from the normal cellular isoform of PrP (PrP(C)) is assumed to induce pathogenesis in prion diseases. Therefore, drug discovery studies for these diseases have focused on the protein conversion process. We used a structure-based drug discovery algorithm (termed Nagasaki University Docking Engine: NUDE) that ran on an intensive supercomputer with a graphic-processing unit to identify several compounds with anti-prion effects. Among the candidates showing a high-binding score, the compounds exhibited direct interaction with recombinant PrP in vitro, and drastically reduced PrP(Sc) and protein-aggresomes in the prion-infected cells. The fragment molecular orbital calculation showed that the van der Waals interaction played a key role in PrP(C) binding as the intermolecular interaction mode. Furthermore, PrP(Sc) accumulation and microgliosis were significantly reduced in the brains of treated mice, suggesting that the drug candidates provided protection from prion disease, although further in vivo tests are needed to confirm these findings. This NUDE-based structure-based drug discovery for normal protein structures is likely useful for the development of drugs to treat other conformational disorders, such as Alzheimer's disease.

  2. Liquid-based three-dimensional tumor models for cancer research and drug discovery.

    PubMed

    Ham, Stephanie L; Joshi, Ramila; Thakuri, Pradip S; Tavana, Hossein

    2016-05-01

    Tumors are three-dimensional tissues where close contacts between cancer cells, intercellular interactions between cancer and stromal cells, adhesion of cancer cells to the extracellular matrix, and signaling of soluble factors modulate functions of cancer cells and their response to therapeutics. Three-dimensional cultures of cancer cells overcome limitations of traditionally used monolayer cultures and recreate essential characteristics of tumors such as spatial gradients of oxygen, growth factors, and metabolites and presence of necrotic, hypoxic, quiescent, and proliferative cells. As such, three-dimensional tumor models provide a valuable tool for cancer research and oncology drug discovery. Here, we describe different tumor models and primarily focus on a model known as tumor spheroid. We summarize different technologies of spheroid formation, and discuss the use of spheroids to address the influence of stromal fibroblasts and immune cells on cancer cells in tumor microenvironment, study cancer stem cells, and facilitate compound screening in the drug discovery process. We review major techniques for quantification of cellular responses to drugs and discuss challenges ahead to enable broad utility of tumor spheroids in research laboratories, integrate spheroid models into drug development and discovery pipeline, and use primary tumor cells for drug screening studies to realize personalized cancer treatment.

  3. Virtualizing the p-ANAPL Library: A Step towards Drug Discovery from African Medicinal Plants

    PubMed Central

    Fotso, Ghislain W.; Andrae-Marobela, Kerstin; Bezabih, Merhatibeb; Ndom, Jean Claude; Ngadjui, Bonaventure T.; Ogundaini, Abiodun O.; Abegaz, Berhanu M.; Meva’a, Luc Mbaze

    2014-01-01

    Background Natural products play a key role in drug discovery programs, both serving as drugs and as templates for the synthesis of drugs, even though the quantities and availabilities of samples for screening are often limitted. Experimental approach A current collection of physical samples of > 500 compound derived from African medicinal plants aimed at screening for drug discovery has been made by donations from several researchers from across the continent to be directly available for drug discovery programs. A virtual library of 3D structures of compounds has been generated and Lipinski’s “Rule of Five” has been used to evaluate likely oral availability of the samples. Results A majority of the compound samples are made of flavonoids and about two thirds (2/3) are compliant to the “Rule of Five”. The pharmacological profiles of thirty six (36) selected compounds in the collection have been discussed. Conclusions and implications The p-ANAPL library is the largest physical collection of natural products derived from African medicinal plants directly available for screening purposes. The virtual library is also available and could be employed in virtual screening campaigns. PMID:24599120

  4. Structure-Based Drug Discovery for Prion Disease Using a Novel Binding Simulation.

    PubMed

    Ishibashi, Daisuke; Nakagaki, Takehiro; Ishikawa, Takeshi; Atarashi, Ryuichiro; Watanabe, Ken; Cruz, Felipe A; Hamada, Tsuyoshi; Nishida, Noriyuki

    2016-07-01

    The accumulation of abnormal prion protein (PrP(Sc)) converted from the normal cellular isoform of PrP (PrP(C)) is assumed to induce pathogenesis in prion diseases. Therefore, drug discovery studies for these diseases have focused on the protein conversion process. We used a structure-based drug discovery algorithm (termed Nagasaki University Docking Engine: NUDE) that ran on an intensive supercomputer with a graphic-processing unit to identify several compounds with anti-prion effects. Among the candidates showing a high-binding score, the compounds exhibited direct interaction with recombinant PrP in vitro, and drastically reduced PrP(Sc) and protein-aggresomes in the prion-infected cells. The fragment molecular orbital calculation showed that the van der Waals interaction played a key role in PrP(C) binding as the intermolecular interaction mode. Furthermore, PrP(Sc) accumulation and microgliosis were significantly reduced in the brains of treated mice, suggesting that the drug candidates provided protection from prion disease, although further in vivo tests are needed to confirm these findings. This NUDE-based structure-based drug discovery for normal protein structures is likely useful for the development of drugs to treat other conformational disorders, such as Alzheimer's disease. PMID:27333028

  5. Anti dermatophytic therapy - Prospects for the discovery of new drugs from natural products

    PubMed Central

    Soares, Luciana Arantes; de Cássia Orlandi Sardi, Janaína; Gullo, Fernanda Patrícia; de Souza Pitangui, Nayla; Scorzoni, Liliana; Leite, Fernanda Sangalli; Giannini, Maria José Soares Mendes; Almeida, Ana Marisa Fusco

    2013-01-01

    Millions of people and animals suffer from superficial infections caused by a group of highly specialized filamentous fungi, the dermatophytes, which only infect keratinized structures. With the appearance of AIDS, the incidence of dermatophytosis has increased. Current drug therapy used for these infections is often toxic, long-term, and expensive and has limited effectiveness; therefore, the discovery of new anti dermatophytic compounds is a necessity. Natural products have been the most productive source for new drug development. This paper provides a brief review of the current literature regarding the presence of dermatophytes in immunocompromised patients, drug resistance to conventional treatments and new anti dermatophytic treatments. PMID:24688490

  6. ChEMBL web services: streamlining access to drug discovery data and utilities.

    PubMed

    Davies, Mark; Nowotka, Michał; Papadatos, George; Dedman, Nathan; Gaulton, Anna; Atkinson, Francis; Bellis, Louisa; Overington, John P

    2015-07-01

    ChEMBL is now a well-established resource in the fields of drug discovery and medicinal chemistry research. The ChEMBL database curates and stores standardized bioactivity, molecule, target and drug data extracted from multiple sources, including the primary medicinal chemistry literature. Programmatic access to ChEMBL data has been improved by a recent update to the ChEMBL web services (version 2.0.x, https://www.ebi.ac.uk/chembl/api/data/docs), which exposes significantly more data from the underlying database and introduces new functionality. To complement the data-focused services, a utility service (version 1.0.x, https://www.ebi.ac.uk/chembl/api/utils/docs), which provides RESTful access to commonly used cheminformatics methods, has also been concurrently developed. The ChEMBL web services can be used together or independently to build applications and data processing workflows relevant to drug discovery and chemical biology.

  7. Lessons from Hot Spot Analysis for Fragment-Based Drug Discovery.

    PubMed

    Hall, David R; Kozakov, Dima; Whitty, Adrian; Vajda, Sandor

    2015-11-01

    Analysis of binding energy hot spots at protein surfaces can provide crucial insights into the prospects for successful application of fragment-based drug discovery (FBDD), and whether a fragment hit can be advanced into a high-affinity, drug-like ligand. The key factor is the strength of the top ranking hot spot, and how well a given fragment complements it. We show that published data are sufficient to provide a sophisticated and quantitative understanding of how hot spots derive from a protein 3D structure, and how their strength, number, and spatial arrangement govern the potential for a surface site to bind to fragment-sized and larger ligands. This improved understanding provides important guidance for the effective application of FBDD in drug discovery. PMID:26538314

  8. OpenZika: An IBM World Community Grid Project to Accelerate Zika Virus Drug Discovery

    PubMed Central

    Perryman, Alexander L.; Horta Andrade, Carolina

    2016-01-01

    The Zika virus outbreak in the Americas has caused global concern. To help accelerate this fight against Zika, we launched the OpenZika project. OpenZika is an IBM World Community Grid Project that uses distributed computing on millions of computers and Android devices to run docking experiments, in order to dock tens of millions of drug-like compounds against crystal structures and homology models of Zika proteins (and other related flavivirus targets). This will enable the identification of new candidates that can then be tested in vitro, to advance the discovery and development of new antiviral drugs against the Zika virus. The docking data is being made openly accessible so that all members of the global research community can use it to further advance drug discovery studies against Zika and other related flaviviruses. PMID:27764115

  9. Professional translational research: a new hybrid paradigm in early drug discovery.

    PubMed

    Nussbaumer, Peter; Klebl, Bert

    2015-01-01

    While industry makes cuts to early drug discovery research, the demand for innovation in the pursuit of novel medicines continues to grow. Who should fill this gap? Academia clearly is a rich source of innovation but how can new basic research concepts find their way into industrial application? A new paradigm for early drug discovery involves professional translational research centers, which function as facilitators and translators at the academia-industry interface, harnessing the strengths of both worlds and leveraging the high innovation potential of academia by using the robustness and efficiency of industry. In this article, the authors discuss the set-up and essential requirements for the successful translation of new drug concepts.

  10. Computer-Aided Drug Discovery Approaches against the Tropical Infectious Diseases Malaria, Tuberculosis, Trypanosomiasis, and Leishmaniasis.

    PubMed

    Njogu, Peter M; Guantai, Eric M; Pavadai, Elumalai; Chibale, Kelly

    2016-01-01

    Despite the tremendous improvement in overall global health heralded by the adoption of the Millennium Declaration in the year 2000, tropical infections remain a major health problem in the developing world. Recent estimates indicate that the major tropical infectious diseases, namely, malaria, tuberculosis, trypanosomiasis, and leishmaniasis, account for more than 2.2 million deaths and a loss of approximately 85 million disability-adjusted life years annually. The crucial role of chemotherapy in curtailing the deleterious health and economic impacts of these infections has invigorated the search for new drugs against tropical infectious diseases. The research efforts have involved increased application of computational technologies in mainstream drug discovery programs at the hit identification, hit-to-lead, and lead optimization stages. This review highlights various computer-aided drug discovery approaches that have been utilized in efforts to identify novel antimalarial, antitubercular, antitrypanosomal, and antileishmanial agents. The focus is largely on developments over the past 5 years (2010-2014). PMID:27622945

  11. Impact of non-profit organizations on drug discovery: opportunities, gaps, solutions.

    PubMed

    Matter, Alex; Keller, Thomas H

    2008-04-01

    Non-profit organizations (NPO) play an increasingly important role in drug discovery and development for diseases that are neglected by the pharmaceutical industry because of low or absent commercial incentives. Governments and major private foundations such as the Wellcome Trust and the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation increasingly step in to provide strategic direction, communication platforms and major resources, motivated by the fact that major healthcare problems remain unsolved. Drug discovery in the field of neglected diseases is fraught with complexities since, in many cases, important tools are lacking including readily available diagnostics, molecular epidemiology, appropriate model systems, representative strain collections, biomarkers, up-to-date trial methodologies and regulatory strategies. On top of this, the high hurdles addressing novel drug targets must be cleared.

  12. Professional translational research: a new hybrid paradigm in early drug discovery.

    PubMed

    Nussbaumer, Peter; Klebl, Bert

    2015-01-01

    While industry makes cuts to early drug discovery research, the demand for innovation in the pursuit of novel medicines continues to grow. Who should fill this gap? Academia clearly is a rich source of innovation but how can new basic research concepts find their way into industrial application? A new paradigm for early drug discovery involves professional translational research centers, which function as facilitators and translators at the academia-industry interface, harnessing the strengths of both worlds and leveraging the high innovation potential of academia by using the robustness and efficiency of industry. In this article, the authors discuss the set-up and essential requirements for the successful translation of new drug concepts. PMID:26420644

  13. G Protein-Coupled Receptors - Targets for Fragment-based Drug Discovery.

    PubMed

    Lawson, Alastair D G

    2015-01-01

    As the considerable technical challenges involved with generating crystal structures of G (guanine nucleotide- binding) protein-coupled receptors (GPCRs) are starting to be successfully addressed, opportunities to apply fragment-based drug discovery (FBDD) to this class of target are becoming a reality. GPCRs represent a large and important family of drug targets with considerable clinical and commercial interest. While their general seven transmembrane helix bundle structures are amenable to therapeutic intervention with small molecules, to date successful drugs have primarily been discovered using traditional competitive or function-based screening. With advances in biophysical screening techniques such as Surface Plasmon Resonance (SPR) and Target-Immobilised NMR Screening (TINS), being matched to developments in molecular dynamics simulations, virtual screening and stabilisation of biologically relevant conformations of GPCRs, structure-based approaches using fragment starting points are beginning to be applied to the discovery of new generations of small molecules.

  14. Anti-HIV Drug Discovery and Development: Current Innovations and Future Trends.

    PubMed

    Zhan, Peng; Pannecouque, Christophe; De Clercq, Erik; Liu, Xinyong

    2016-04-14

    The early effectiveness of combinatorial antiretroviral therapy (cART) in the treatment of HIV infection has been compromised to some extent by rapid development of multidrug-resistant HIV strains, poor bioavailability, and cumulative toxicities, and so there is a need for alternative strategies of antiretroviral drug discovery and additional therapeutic agents with novel action modes or targets. From this perspective, we first review current strategies of antiretroviral drug discovery and optimization, with the aid of selected examples from the recent literature. We highlight the development of phosphate ester-based prodrugs as a means to improve the aqueous solubility of HIV inhibitors, and the introduction of the substrate envelope hypothesis as a new approach for overcoming HIV drug resistance. Finally, we discuss future directions for research, including opportunities for exploitation of novel antiretroviral targets, and the strategy of activation of latent HIV reservoirs as a means to eradicate the virus. PMID:26509831

  15. Drug discovery and natural products: end of an era or an endless frontier?

    PubMed

    Li, Jesse W-H; Vederas, John C

    2009-07-10

    Historically, the majority of new drugs have been generated from natural products (secondary metabolites) and from compounds derived from natural products. During the past 15 years, pharmaceutical industry research into natural products has declined, in part because of an emphasis on high-throughput screening of synthetic libraries. Currently there is substantial decline in new drug approvals and impending loss of patent protection for important medicines. However, untapped biological resources, "smart screening" methods, robotic separation with structural analysis, metabolic engineering, and synthetic biology offer exciting technologies for new natural product drug discovery. Advances in rapid genetic sequencing, coupled with manipulation of biosynthetic pathways, may provide a vast resource for the future discovery of pharmaceutical agents. PMID:19589993

  16. G Protein-Coupled Receptors - Targets for Fragment-based Drug Discovery.

    PubMed

    Lawson, Alastair D G

    2015-01-01

    As the considerable technical challenges involved with generating crystal structures of G (guanine nucleotide- binding) protein-coupled receptors (GPCRs) are starting to be successfully addressed, opportunities to apply fragment-based drug discovery (FBDD) to this class of target are becoming a reality. GPCRs represent a large and important family of drug targets with considerable clinical and commercial interest. While their general seven transmembrane helix bundle structures are amenable to therapeutic intervention with small molecules, to date successful drugs have primarily been discovered using traditional competitive or function-based screening. With advances in biophysical screening techniques such as Surface Plasmon Resonance (SPR) and Target-Immobilised NMR Screening (TINS), being matched to developments in molecular dynamics simulations, virtual screening and stabilisation of biologically relevant conformations of GPCRs, structure-based approaches using fragment starting points are beginning to be applied to the discovery of new generations of small molecules. PMID:26126904

  17. Characterizing Septum Inhibition in Mycobacterium tuberculosis for Novel Drug Discovery

    SciTech Connect

    Respicio,L.; Nair, P.; Huang, Q.; Anil, B.; Tracz, S.; Truglio, J.; Kisker, C.; Raleigh, D.; Ojima, I.; et al

    2008-01-01

    A temperature sensitive mutation in the cell division protein FtsZ was used in combination with transcriptional analysis to identify biomarkers for inhibition of septum formation. Crystallography and modeling revealed that the glycine for aspartate substitution at amino acid 210 was located in helix 8 of the protein, adjacent to the T7 synergy loop. To verify the molecular behavior of FtsZD210G, the in vitro activity and structural stability were evaluated as a function of temperature. These analyses confirmed that the FtsZD210G mutant had reduced GTPase and polymerization activity compared to wild-type FtsZ, and CD spectroscopy demonstrated that both FtsZD210G and wild-type FtsZ had similar structure and stability. Significantly, the FtsZD210G merodiploid strain of M. tuberculosis had compromised growth at 37 C, substantiating the suitability of FtsZD210G as a molecular tool for global analysis in response to improper FtsZ polymerization and septum inhibition. Advanced model-based bioinformatics and transcriptional mapping were used to identify high-content multiple features that provide biomarkers for the development of a rational drug screening platform for discovering novel chemotherapeutics that target cell division.

  18. Natural Products Towards the Discovery of Potential Future Antithrombotic Drugs.

    PubMed

    Islam, Md Asiful; Alam, Fahmida; Khalil, Md Ibrahim; Sasongko, Teguh Haryo; Gan, Siew Hua

    2016-01-01

    Globally, thrombosis-associated disorders are one of the main contributors to fatalities. Besides genetic influences, there are some acquired and environmental risk factors dominating thrombotic diseases. Although standard regimens have been used for a long time, many side effects still occur which can be life threatening. Therefore, natural products are good alternatives. Although the quest for antithrombotic natural products came to light only since the end of last century, in the last two decades, a considerable number of natural products showing antithrombotic activities (antiplatelet, anticoagulant and fibrinolytic) with no or minimal side effects have been reported. In this review, several natural products used as antithrombotic agents including medicinal plants, vegetables, fruits, spices and edible mushrooms which have been discovered in the last 15 years and their target sites (thrombogenic components, factors and thrombotic pathways) are described. In addition, the side effects, limitations and interactions of standard regimens with natural products are also discussed. The active compounds could serve as potential sources for future research on antithrombotic drug development. As a future direction, more advanced researches (in quest of the target cofactor or component involved in antithrombotic pathways) are warranted for the development of potential natural antithrombotic medications (alone or combined with standard regimens) to ensure maximum safety and efficacy. PMID:26951101

  19. Breaking Cryo-EM Resolution Barriers to Facilitate Drug Discovery.

    PubMed

    Merk, Alan; Bartesaghi, Alberto; Banerjee, Soojay; Falconieri, Veronica; Rao, Prashant; Davis, Mindy I; Pragani, Rajan; Boxer, Matthew B; Earl, Lesley A; Milne, Jacqueline L S; Subramaniam, Sriram

    2016-06-16

    Recent advances in single-particle cryoelecton microscopy (cryo-EM) are enabling generation of numerous near-atomic resolution structures for well-ordered protein complexes with sizes ≥ ∼200 kDa. Whether cryo-EM methods are equally useful for high-resolution structural analysis of smaller, dynamic protein complexes such as those involved in cellular metabolism remains an important question. Here, we present 3.8 Å resolution cryo-EM structures of the cancer target isocitrate dehydrogenase (93 kDa) and identify the nature of conformational changes induced by binding of the allosteric small-molecule inhibitor ML309. We also report 2.8-Å- and 1.8-Å-resolution structures of lactate dehydrogenase (145 kDa) and glutamate dehydrogenase (334 kDa), respectively. With these results, two perceived barriers in single-particle cryo-EM are overcome: (1) crossing 2 Å resolution and (2) obtaining structures of proteins with sizes < 100 kDa, demonstrating that cryo-EM can be used to investigate a broad spectrum of drug-target interactions and dynamic conformational states.

  20. Constellation Pharmacology: A new paradigm for drug discovery

    PubMed Central

    Schmidt, Eric W.; Olivera, Baldomero M.

    2015-01-01

    Constellation Pharmacology is a cell-based high-content phenotypic-screening platform that utilizes subtype-selective pharmacological agents to elucidate the cell-specific combinations (“constellations”) of key signaling proteins that define specific cell types. Heterogeneous populations of native cells, in which the different individual cell types have been identified and characterized, are the foundation for this screening platform. Constellation Pharmacology is useful for screening small molecules or for deconvoluting complex mixtures of biologically-active natural products. This platform has been used to purify natural products and discover their molecular mechanisms. In the on-going development of Constellation Pharmacology, there is a positive-feedback loop between the pharmacological characterization of cell types and screening for new drug candidates. As Constellation Pharmacology is used to discover compounds with novel targeting-selectivity profiles, those new compounds then further help to elucidate the constellations of specific cell types, thereby increasing the content of this high-content platform. PMID:25562646