Less than 1% of current drugs have a companion diagnostic, and 60% of the drugs in clinical trials have a companion diagnostic in mind. Companion diagnostics are an important component in moving the ball forward in personalized medicine and making those moves depends on biomarkers.
A scientist needs a purified sample of a protein to unravel its function. The complexity of acquiring such a purified protein depends largely on the complexity of the original sample. Most protocols for purifying proteins include some form—and maybe more than one—of chromatography.
As healthcare evolves around the world, pharmaceutical companies face new reasons to increase the throughput of RNA analysis. Many drug researchers are trying to characterize the response to some type of treatment, like the effects of siRNA or small molecules.
In general, flow cytometry collects data on biological components—cells—in a suspension that passes a detector. Depending on the speed of the flow, the number of cells and the variety of markers being used, the data analysis ranges from merely repetitive to ridiculously complex.
In the cell-culture side of the bioprocessing industry, researchers explore techniques that can be exploited in manufacturing, such as making biotherapeutics.
When applying flow cytometry to drug discovery, the efficiency of the research depends in part on how many features can be simultaneously tracked.
Given the variety of techniques for making antibodies, companies must ensure that scientists receive molecules that function as advertised.
The pipette is as much a laboratory icon as the test tube. In fact, a typical lab today probably uses pipettors more than test tubes, which are giving way more and more to multiwall plates.
In some complex solutions, even the best technology cannot provide an adequate separation with just one dimension. To make better separations, drug researchers often desire two-dimensional ultraperformance liquid chromatography.
Whenever possible, drug researchers want one process to quickly reveal a collection of information. This makes high-content screening and analysis increasingly important in drug discovery.
At recent meetings, pharmaceutical scientists have made it clear that they want more ways to use liquid chromatography with peptides and proteins, and this interest will expand as more companies explore biologics.
In today’s healthcare industry, scientists often face more complicated samples. A research project exploring a fluid or tissue sample for biomarkers, may need a combination of liquid chromatography and two rounds of mass spectrometry to pull out more details from the noise.
After years of DNA sequencing to unravel the genome, many researchers now turn to RNA sequencing to explore the transcriptome, but collecting the necessary RNA takes some effort.
When a scientist really wants to see what’s going on with their research, they just need to have a look. Even when tracking thousands of cells, image-based cytometry lets researchers examine them one by one.
The best choice for chromatography in drug research depends largely on the task. To pick the best column for a particular application in drug research scientists should think in terms of the different types of compounds that might be analyzed.
To grow animal cells in culture, scientists once used a wide variety of animal-based components to create a conducive environment, but that is changing.
Advanced microscopic cameras use sophisticated sensors to capture images. New developments in sensors are bringing more features into view.
As scientists use polyclonal antibodies more widely, their needs become more varied. Moreover, the reliability of catalogue polyclonals can fluctuate, so some researchers prefer an antibody designed and manufactured just for them.
Biological safety cabinets aren’t all that different from cars. Although 40-year-old biological safety cabinets do lots of what today’s cabinets do, modern ones just work better.
Supercritical fluid chromatography has begun taking on new roles in the pharmaceutical industry.
From quantum mechanical techniques to docking algorithms, drug discovery grows increasingly dependent on molecular modeling.
To see how compounds impact cells, many researchers now use high content approaches. Typically, this involves automatically capturing and photographing cells, and then applying image analysis.
“The devil is in the details” when it comes to applying cell culture to drug discovery and development.
Many articles describe assays that work in multi-well plates, but without the technology to read the results these assays are of limited benefit to the drug discovery and development process.
Research is showing that single cells differ in their expression even in tissues once considered homogenous. This could be especially useful knowledge in medical research.
When it comes to searching for specific proteins in a biological extract, many researchers still turn to the Western blot. Even after thirty years, this technique continues to be improved.