News & Views
Smart support for Peptide Drug Discovery Platform
Jun 27 2022
Biopharmaceutical company Orbit Discovery has been awarded a £472,000 Smart grant by Innovate UK, to facilitate the implementation of droplet-based microfluidics for cell-based functional screening to advance the discovery of peptide therapeutic candidates.
The company’s high-throughput screening platform will directly address difficult-to-access drug targets in key areas of biological interest, with a focus on multi-membrane spanning proteins, such as G-protein-coupled receptors. Orbit’s proposed interfacing of cell-based functional screening models with peptide display technologies will rapidly identify molecules which generate a therapeutically-relevant functional response earlier in the drug discovery process. This will avoid polluting screening outputs with non-functional binders often observed with other platforms.
Anthony Pitt, Chief Technology Officer, Orbit Discovery, commented: “This Innovate UK Smart Grant will help us further cement our technical leadership in functional screening. The microfluidic platform can elevate our current functional screening capabilities from tens of thousands to millions of peptides. This throughput will help us identify rare functional binders that are typically missed with more traditional screening platforms.”
Dr Neil Butt, Chief Executive Officer, Orbit Discovery, said: “This is an exciting opportunity for Orbit to increase its commitment to R&D and create additional high value service offerings to our customers. Our current functional screening platform is market leading and the conclusion of this work will be transformational in expanding the throughput and library size that can be screened within the platform.”
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