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MD Biosciences Blog

Join MD Biosciences for AMP 2015 Annual Meeting

Posted by MD Biosciences on Nov 2, 2015 3:30:00 PM

MD Biosciences will be attending the Association for Molecular Pathology 2015 Conference in Austen Texas on November 5-7. The conference will focus on “realizing the dream of precision medicine”. As a CLIA lab, we are looking forward to meeting with our colleagues in the diagnostic industry and discussing the latest updates in testing and treatments in cancer and infectious diseases. Additionally, we are excited to hear about the cutting edge research occurring in clinical translational medicine and pharmacogenomics. Please contact us at info-us@mdbiosciences.com if you would like to meet at the conference. Stay tuned for our blog recap of the event.

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Topics: AMP, Association for Molecular Pathology, Pathology, CLIA

Targeting Microbiomes & Biomarkers: Inflammation World Congress

Posted by MD Biosciences on Aug 20, 2015 4:30:00 PM

The 12th World Congress on Inflammation wrapped up on Wednesday August 12th after four days packed with cutting edge inflammatory research by key opinions leaders in the field. Presentations hit every aspect of the scientific spectrum from development of pre-clinical models through retrospective studies on new target therapies and everything in between. Highlights of the conference included the Keynote Lecture by Luke O’Neill of Trinity College Dublin, the Symposium “Mechanisms Underlying Microbiome-Mediated Inflammation”, and multiple discussions on identifying and targeting novel biomarkers of inflammatory diseases.

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Topics: Inflammation, metabolic, Preclinical Discovery, Microbiome, Biomarkers, World Congress on Inflammation

Novel Biomarkers| Detecting early-stage Acute Kidney Injury (AKI)

Posted by MD Biosciences on May 7, 2015 11:47:16 AM

Acute kidney injury is a disease that is characterized by a rapid loss of kidney function, including the rapid fall in glomerular filtration rate (GFR) and the retention of nitrogenous waste over the course of hours and days. AKI is a complex, multifactorial disease with inflammatory, ischemic, necrotic and apoptotic events that occur simultaneously, leading to damage and functional kidney failure. The process of kidney injury occurs in stages starting with increased risk, followed by damage as a result of ischemic injury or toxicity, followed by a decrease in glomerular filtration rate (GFR), which further progresses to kidney failure.

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Topics: Acute Kidney Injury (AKI)

Drug Discovery Success Rates | Role of Preclinical Study Design.

Posted by MD Biosciences on Apr 22, 2015 1:16:55 AM

In 2014, an article was published in Nature analyzing the clinical development success rates for investigational drugs. It's no surprise that the success rates are still somewhat dismal with 1 in 10 drugs that enter clinical phases pushing through to FDA approval. The article breaks down the success rate in each phase for differing classes of drugs as well as various therapeutic indications. NMEs were found to have the lowest success rates in every phase of development (7.5%) whereas biologics had nearly two times the success rate (14.6%).

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Topics: Preclinical Discovery

The Value of Phenotypic Screening

Posted by MD Biosciences on Mar 24, 2015 12:21:23 PM

Preclinical strategies used to identify potential drug candidates include target-based screening, phenotypic screening, modification of natural substances and biologic-based approaches. In the earlier days of drug de- velopment, phenotypic screening was largely employed and identified molecules that modify a disease phe- noytpe by acting on a previously unidentified target or simultaneously on more than one target. In the 1980s, advances in molecular biology and genomics led to a shift in developing compounds against defined targets that were implicated in disease. The success rate of clinical stage candidates, however has not improved and phenotypic screens are coming back into light. 

In a recent publication, analysis of different discovery strategies for 259 approved new molecular entities (NMEs) and new biologics between 1999 and 2008 showed that the contribution of phenotypic screening to the drug discovery of first-in-class small molecule drugs exceeded that of target-based approaches in an era when the major focus was on target-based approaches (Swiney, D and Anthony, J. Nature Rev. Drug Disc. (2011) 10:507-519). 


Phenotypic Screening gets another look?

While phenotypic screening is getting a second look and making its way back into some biopharma's discovery toolbox, many phenotypic screens are established on the basis of cellular systems or systems that are set to ‘mimic’ the in vivo environment. These systems range from a simple single cell types to more complex cell or tissue systems. What can occur with in vitro phenotypic screens that aim to mimic the in vivo environment is:

  • The screen is most often selectively look at single pathways and therefore miss inter-pathway interactions

  • The screens, while aiming to mimic the in vivo environment, don’t predict the in in vivo effect and unexpected biology, interactions or potential toxicity effects that are often observed in vivo.

  • Can miss pharmaceutical candidates whose pharmocology isn't evident until it is in a complex biological system.

This has led us to develop a more comprehensive, in vivo phenotypic screening platform, Senerga®. The Senerga® Phenotypic Screening platform consists of a series of matrices designed to cover maximum biological pathways to identify pharmaceutically relevant candidates that also show no predictive toxicity effects early on in the discovery process. This enables researchers to move beyond well-defined targets from the literature or their existing programs and discover new disease biology and potential targets.  

The benefit to using this powerful screening program:

  • Enables researchers to see effects on disease phenotypes in a complex biological setting with multiple pathways involved.
  • Obtain predictive toxicology data at the same time.
  • Expands therapeutic potential of libraries as it covers maximum biological pathways with biomarkers to support potential mechanisms
  • Identify hits relatively quickly that can be put through further target validation or efficacy proof of concept studies. 

With the need to move quickly and fill drug discovery pipelines with new candidates, this phenotypic screening platform is designed to efficiently screen compound libraries rapidly (within 3 - 9 months dependent on the size of the library). The resulting data is mined for hits that are identified from modified disease phenotypes and biological pathways. If you'd like to speak with a scientist about utilizing the Senerga® Phenotypic screening platform, please fill out the following details and a scientist will be in contact with you. 


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IMQ-induced Psoriasis Model | Correlates with Human Psoriasis

Posted by MD Biosciences on Apr 29, 2013 5:28:00 PM

First let's start by talking about what makes a good preclinical model of psoriasis?

A good pre-clinical psoriasis model should obviously re-capitulate the key features of the clinical disease in humans. Therefore, a plausible model will exhibit the following criteria:

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Topics: Dermal, Psoriasis

Bioimaging in Preclinical Models of Rheumatoid Arthritis

Posted by MD Biosciences on Nov 5, 2012 12:12:00 PM

Rheumatoid arthritis is a chronic and progressive inflammatory condition estimated to affect between 0.5-1% of the world's population, with more women being affected than men. It is a systemic disease manifesting mainly as a disabiling destruction of the synovial joints of the hands and feet.

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Topics: Inflammation

Post-stroke Neuroinflammation | Astrocytes & Microglia

Posted by MD Biosciences on Jul 9, 2012 1:22:00 PM

Post-stroke neuroinflammation is a very complex phenomenon involving multiple resident and invading cell types at varying degrees of differentiation or activation - each expressing specific subsets of diffusable factors, receptors, cellular adhesion molecules and other markers - all of which is changing as time passes to create an initially neurotoxic and then finally neuroprotective environment. This inflammatory process in the penumbra offers a broad array of potential cellular and molecular targets with much wider therapeutic windows.

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Topics: Neuro/CNS

MMPs in ischemic conditions (stroke and myocardial infarct)

Posted by MD Biosciences on Jun 25, 2012 3:20:00 PM

Matrix metalloproteinases (MMPs) are zinc-dependent endopeptidases that function to degrade extracellular matrix. The turnover of ECM in organs is regulated by a balance by MMPs and their inhibitors (TIMPs) and the imbalance is implicated in a variety of diseases. Here we focus on the roles of MMPs in ischemia - particularly cerebral stroke and myocardial infarct.

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Topics: Neuro/CNS, Cardiovascular

Post Myocardial Infarct (MI) Inflammatory Environment

Posted by MD Biosciences on Jun 11, 2012 3:44:00 PM

At the tissue level, inflammation ensues very rapidly after myocardial infarct (MI), initially prompted by detection of high levels of reactive oxygen species (ROS) and necrotic cellular debris by resident cells in neighboring non-infarct tissues. ROS and necrotic cell debris are also detected by peripheral leukocytes, which home to the injured tissue, exit circulation, and infiltrate infarct and non-infarct tissues. Upon entering the lesion site, these leukocytes further release ROS, proteolytic enzymes, pro-inflammatory and cytotoxic diffusible factors and participate in phagocytosis of necrotic cells and disrupted ECM. This post-MI inflammatory environment in cardiac tissues peaks at 1 to 2 weeks and generally resolves at 3 to 4 weeks after the ischemic event. While important for clearing the tissue of compromised cells and debris and preparing it for transitioning into the proliferative phase of infarct healing, inflammation that becomes excessive or chronic results in adverse remodeling, infarct expansion, and poor patient outcomes. [1-4]

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Topics: Cardiovascular