Production of Naturally Compressed Screening Arrays
Animal venoms and toxins are a rich source of novel biologics with several making the progression from tool to therapeutic such as FDA approved Integrilintm (Eptifibatide) (Millennium pharmaceuticals)1 derived from Rattlesnake venom for unstable angina. Several other animal toxins are in various stages of research for such applications as antimicrobials, analgesics, thrombosis and even cancer; contortrostatin (copper head, agkistrodon contortrix, venom) reduces metastasies from breast carcinomas2. Venoms are complex mixtures of peptides, enzymes and smaller biomolecules amongst others, thus representing a vast library of tools. Traditional screening methodologies required single compounds in single wells but with the advent of compressed screening plates, much higher density screens can be run with fewer reagents and in shorter time frames. The Venom Discovery ArrayTM (VDATM) is a naturally compressed hit-to-tool screening plate produced by Venomtech Limited that makes use of natures compressed libraries (venoms) and phylogenetic diversity allowing for maximum discovery potential. These VDA’s can be targeted to specific disease areas with many related species or maximum diversity with up to 96 species from a wide group of animals including snakes, spiders, scorpions and insects.
(1) Philips and Scarborough, (1997), The American Journal of Cardiology 80(4): 11-20. (2) Mohit Trikha, Yves A. De Clerck, and Francis S. Markland, (1994) Cancer research. 54:4993-4998.