BUFFALO, N.Y. -- Just as conventional libraries are only as good as the books on their shelves, chemical libraries synthesized by pharmaceutical scientists are only as useful as the new compounds they generate.
A new drug-discovery method being developed by University at Buffalo researchers may be able to turn those chemical libraries, arrays of compounds synthesized in the lab, into molecular "habitats" where only the most desirable drug candidates survive.
Based on the application of Darwinian principles of evolution to a chemical system, the method is designed to endow compounds in chemical libraries with the extraordinary ability to evolve into the best potential drug candidate for a particular molecular target.
Called dynamic combinatorial chemistry, the new method could mean major cost savings for pharmaceutical companies because it has the potential to identify numerous promising drug leads in just days, as compared to months or years using current techniques.
It was described today (Tuesday, May 19) in a presentation by Alexey V. Eliseev, Pharm.D., UB assistant professor of medicinal chemistry, at the 39th annual UB Medicinal Chemistry Symposium.
The research is published in the current issue of Chemistry: A European Journal (Vol. 4, No. 5, pp. 825-834).
The article is available at http://www.wiley-vch.de/vch/journals/2111/index.html
The system differs from traditional combinatorial chemistry, where chemical libraries synthesize as many different compounds as possible, which then are screened individually for potency against specific disease molecules.
"In combinatorial chemistry, the goal is to produce many possible combinations and then screen the compounds individually," said Eliseev.
"In our method we combine the steps."
Doing both in one step would be extremely cost-effective, Eliseev explained.
"Our libraries can potentially be generated up to two orders of magnitude faster than is possible with traditional combin
Contact: Ellen Goldbaum
University at Buffalo