Sciences Center enters collaboration for drug discovery
helps validate new technology
Health Sciences Center and Chemical Diversity Labs, Inc. (CDL)
of San Diego, Calif., one of the worlds leading chemistry
services companies, recently entered into an innovative research
partnership to collaborate on discovering drugs that could be
effective against a variety of diseases.
most basic level, discovering more effective drugs for use in
the treatment of disease means evaluating how chemical compounds
might impact biological processes. For instance, calcium, a
naturally chemical, has been shown to reduce stomach acid and
is used in some drugs to treat heartburn. With todays
technology, drug companies have thousands and thousands of chemical
compounds that could potentially affect biological cells in
a myriad of ways. Companies organize these chemical compounds
in what people call libraries.
recently signed agreement, CDL chose UNM as a research partner
to help the university validate its technology, called HyperCytTM.
Diversity Labs, Inc. is a leading provider of discovery chemistry
for the pharmaceutical, biotech and agriculture industries and
boasts the largest, most diverse collection of chemistry compounds
in the world industry. With more than 200 chemists, 500 customers
and worldwide operations, CDL offers highly flexible integrated
solutions in pre-clinical drug discoveries.
Health Sciences Center has two unique types of screening procedures
in use, one that can screen and measure actual effects in cells
and a virtual screening process, through computational
Sklar, director of Basic Research at the UNM Cancer Research
and Treatment Center and a world leader in the use of flow cytometry
and its applications for drug discovery, said, I am delighted
that Chemical Diversity Labs chose to work with UNM on this
project, since CDL is a widely respected player in discovery
chemistry and has also created state-of-the-art technology platforms
in this field.
of the collaboration, Dr. Tudor I. Oprea, who is a leading world
authority on medicinal and computational chemistry and the director
of Biocomputing at UNMs Health Science Center, will perform
virtual scans by using his proprietary alogorithms
to verify CDLs computational focusing of targeted libraries
and to select a library of small-molecule compounds for screening
as potential ligands for a peptide-activated GPCR for which
no small-molecule antagonists are known at present.
the most numerous types of cell proteins in the body and are
the target agents for approximately 50 percent of the drugs
on the market today.