In order to meet its objectives, the scientific expertise in DDRC spans the following areas:
- Assay development and high-content screening: Development and standardization of robust, sensitive, and reproducible platforms for high content, medium-throughput screening. The platforms developed vary depending upon either the target or activity being examined, and will include both whole cell and in vitro assays. All relevant infrastructure for this purpose is available.
- Synthetic and medicinal chemistry: Strong capabilities for organic synthesis and SAR optimization. Medicinal chemistry expertise is also available with the necessary supporting infrastructure. Key infrastructure includes 500Mhz and 700Mhz NMR machines, mass spectrometer, and a SepBox system for high-throughput fractionation of complex mixtures/natural products.
- Cell and Molecular Biology: Expertise in developing new tools and approaches for analyzing the basis of disease-specific phenotypic perturbations in cellular systems. Research emphasis is on integrating high-throughput experimental approaches with the tools of systems biology to delineate disease-specific networks. Strength in mass spectrometry for interrogating the cellular proteome, lipidome and metabolome. Infrastructure includes multiple mass spectrometers, confocal microscope, flow cytometer etc.
- Pharmacology and Analytical Biochemistry: Provides the downstream analysis for a candidate drug once it has been identified. This includes evaluation of pharmacological properties such as PK/ADME in vivo and in vitro, and tissue distribution of compounds using rodent models.
- Computational and Mathematical Biology: Incorporate and develop expertise in all aspects of high-throughput data analysis, network biology, and mathematical modeling of network dynamics. Capabilities for data handling extends across all molecular components and processes of a cell and includes analysis of the genome, transcriptome, epigenome, proteome, lipidome and the metabolome. This capability is complemented by strong expertise in the modeling of complex systems behavior, which is synergistically approached from both network-based and purely mathematical strategies. Additional areas of expertise include chemoinformatics, bioinformatics, and in silico drug design. All of the required software and hardware is available.