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High Throughput Screening (HTS)

Background

High Throughput Screening (HTS) is a drug-discovery process widely used in the pharmaceutical industry. It leverages automation to quickly assay the biological or biochemical activity of a large number of drug-like compounds. It is a useful for discovering ligands for receptors, enzymes, ion-channels or other pharmacological targets, or pharmacologically profiling a cellular or biochemical pathway of interest. Typically, HTS assays are performed in "automation-friendly" microtiter plates with a 96, 384 or 1536 well format.

Capabilities

The Lead Identification Department at Scripps Florida has set up a state-of-the-art HTS operation to support Scripps Research's intramural HTS efforts. This department has both HTS and compound management automation, and expertise in adapting biological and biochemical bench-top assays into high-throughput screens. Florida researchers can apply for access to the institute's expertise through the Scripps Florida "Access to Technologies" program. All applications accepted will be charged on a "fee-for-service" basis. Please note, other government-sponsored funding opportunities may be available, and in certain circumstances these fee-for-service charges may be waived; please refer to the Access to Technologies program manager for details.

Listed below are the available services provided by the Lead Identification Department:

  1. HTS Assay Development: Lead ID will use its expertise to translate a benchtop "test tube" assay to a 384-well or 1536-well plate format HTS assay as necessary.
  2. HTS Target "Profiling" Assays: A subset of Scripps Florida's compound library contains pharmacologically well-characterized compounds, active in the most common HTS target classes (GPCRs, ion channels, kinase, nuclear receptors, etc.). This subset is available for preliminary screening efforts. If an assay is already in 384 or 1536 well format, the subset can be screened to characterize the pharmacologic activity of a target and determine HTS feasibility.
  3. Full-Scale HTS Screening & Follow-up: Scripps Florida has an HTS compound library of greater than 600,000 unique pharmacological entities. The entire collection or a subset may be screened. Once the screen is complete, several follow-up HTS assays can be performed on compounds that demonstrate activity.
  4. Small-Molecule Purity and Mass Determination: Using an LC-MS platform, the purity and molecular mass of an organic molecule can be determined.

Although there are a variety of biochemical and biological assays, only a subset is amenable to HTS. Only a limited number of HTS campaigns per year are available through the Access to Technologies program. The Scripps selection process includes a review of various criteria, such as assays that are amenable to automation and research programs that may have significant impact on the scientific community.

To request use of the Scripps Florida's HTS technology, please visit the Contact Us section on the Lead Identification website.  Additional information about the High Throughput Screening (HTS) program can also be found on the Lead Identification website.