Analysis of a New High Throughput Screening Detection Technology for Rapid hERG Safety Testing using a Fluorescence Polarization Assay
Speed and sensitivity are the hallmarks of Fluorescence Polarization (FP) assay technologies. Due to this FP has seen penetration in the drug discovery and drug development markets for High Throughput Screening applications. For a good overview of applications/target audiences for FP here is an easy to read and interesting White Paper with good citations for further reading: Fluorescence Polarization in Life Sciences. The Predictor hERG biochemical FP assay has been used as a model of FP performance validation used on our Synergy lines, not only because it is an assay designed for HTS run at low volume in 384-well plates, but because quantification of hERG channel binding and inhibition are cardio toxicity tests recommended for all drug compounds before human use (e.g. in pre-clinical trials). Therefore, the assay needs to prove it can compare with GLP-compliant gold standard methods, and the detection technology used to produce that data must be rigorous enough to do the same. Although BioTek has published a number of pieces of marketing collateral using the Predictor hERG assay, until Synergy Neo, other Synergy models could only provide sensitivity acceptable for detection of this assay at the cost of speed. Publication of optimal read parameters was either largely ignored or minimized in the other BioTek collateral for this reason, as the combination of assay and detection parameters required for optimal data were largely prohibitory for HTS applications when competitors could do it at ~ 2 min plate read time within a 2 hour assay incubation window.