Conference on Cell Based Assays (Conference and Workshop) (Cell assays)

Venue: BSG House

Location: London, United Kingdom

Event Date/Time: Apr 20, 2010 End Date/Time: Apr 22, 2010
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Cell-Based Assays

Improved platforms and techniques for drug discovery, development and toxicity testing

20th - 22nd April 2010, BSG House, London, UK

Background Info

Key Speakers
• Dr. Maria Flocco, Senior Director, Lead Discovery and Structural Biology & Biophysics, Pfizer
• Dr. Maite de los Frailes, Manager of Screening and Compound Profiling, Molecular Discovery Research, GlaxoSmithKline
• Dr. Priya Kunapuli, Director, In Vitro Sciences, External Discovery and Pre-Clinical Sciences, Merck Research Laboratories
• Dr. Stefan O. Mueller, Global Head, Early, Genetic and Molecular Toxicology, Merck Serono
• Professor Sir Ian Wilmut, Director, MRC Centre for Regenerative Medicine, University of Edinburgh
• Dr. Matthew Peters, Principal Scientist, Lead Generation, AstraZeneca
• Dr. Nick Thomas, Principal Scientist, GE Healthcare
• Dr. Rochdi Bouhelal, Senior Investigator, Novartis
• Dr. Peter Sartipy, Senior Principal Scientist & Project Manager, Cellartis
• Dr. Julian Burke, Chief Executive Officer, Genetix
• Dr. Dusko Ilic, Senior Lecturer in Stem Cell Science, King’s College London
• Dr. Jurgen Moll, Director, Department of Cell Biology & Oncology, Nerviano Medical Sciences
• Dr. Stephan Heyse, Head of Lead Discovery Informatics, Genedata

Despite spiralling R&D costs, 90% of lead candidates identified by current in vitro systems fail to become drugs. Setbacks including poor efficacy and unanticipated side effects remain significant challenges, frequently undetected in animal and pre-clinical testing.

New advances in microarray, label-free and stem cell platforms are facilitating faster screening using human cells and dramatically improving next generation models.

This 3-day event, comprising pre-conference workshop and two-day meeting, provides practical insights into the latest developments in this exciting field. With an international faculty of leading experts, accelerate your product launches with insights from key decision makers.

By attending Cell-Based assays conference, you will obtain distilled insights from outstanding speakers, in key areas including:

• Whole-cell screening for GPCR ligands
• Direct small-molecule kinase activation
• Advances and challenges in label-free technologies
• Induced pluripotent and hESCs for drug discovery
• Embryonic stem cell-derived hepatocytes and adult liver cells for CYP450 toxicity evaluation
• Accelerated high-content screening with human cardiac cells
• Neural progenitor cells for HT/uHT testing
• Three-dimensional primary cell cultures for drug development
• Cell migration and uptake assays
• Primary and three-dimensional culture methods for pharmacological profiling

Who should attend?

Presidents, Chief Executive Officers, VPs, Global Heads, Chief Scientific Officers, Directors, Principal Scientists, Franchise Heads and Investigators in:
• Bioanalytical Development
• High-Throughput/High-Content Screening Operations
• Compound Profiling
• Drug Discovery/Validation
• Drug Delivery
• Lead Generation
• In Vitro Sciences
• Pre-clinical Development
• Medicinal Chemistry
• Toxicology
• Stem Cell Technologies & Platforms
• Pharmacovigilance and Safety Testing
• Chemistry and Bioapplications
• GPCR/Kinases/Molecular Pharmacology
• External/Contract Research
• Pharmacokinetics/Pharmacodynamics
• Global Research and Development
• Business Development
• Investment and Venture Capital

Pre-conference Workshop, Tuesday 20th April 2010

Label-Free Cellular Assays: The Relevant Future of Drug Discovery

Led by: Dr. Ryan McGuinness, Principal, Ryan McGuinness Consultants
Dr. Matthew Peters, Principal Scientist, Lead Generation, AstraZeneca

Timings: 09:30 - 10:00 Coffee & Registration
10:00 - 15:00 Workshop
Timing includes lunch and refreshment breaks

The purpose of the workshop is to allow you to engage in knowledge sharing with your peers in a smaller, less formal environment than the main conference. As such, the audience size will typically be no more than 20 participants in order to enable maximum interaction between the workshop leader and the delegates. The format is also more interactive, with less emphasis on ‘lecture-style’ presentations and more emphasis on group discussions, exercises and Q&A sessions.

A review of Label-free cell based assays - what they are, how they work and where they fit.

Today a majority of compound screening campaigns performed by the Biopharmaceutical industry rely on cell-based assays for one particular reason: cell-based assays enable functional measures of target activation in a more relevant and informative setting when compared to biochemical assays. Label-free cellular assays are driving this paradigm forward with their exquisite sensitivity, robustness, ease of use and flexibility. These assays are now performed routinely throughout early drug discovery from target identification and validation to primary screening, lead identification and lead optimization and into safety and toxicology. Through their sensitivity to endogenous levels of receptor targets in cell types closely aligned to the disease processes under study, these technologies provide highly accurate models of complex biological states in formats compatible with industrialized drug screening.

During this workshop we will review the leading, commercially available label-free cellular assay platforms and discuss their applications, advantages and disadvantages. We will have a full discussion of the underlying technology of each platform and compare their abilities to advance various stages of the drug discovery process. We will also explore where label-free technologies fit in the process and how they can be utilized to promote better decision making about which lead candidates to advance. The future of these exciting new technologies is in their ability to create opportunities for researchers to put a higher degree of cell biology into their drug discovery in ways that until now were unattainable.

Lessons Learned
• In-depth understanding of the leading label-free cellular assay technologies currently on the market.
• Discussion of label-free’s placement in the drug discovery process.
• Advantages and disadvantages of adopting label-free cell based assay technologies.
• Case studies illustrating the utility of label-free assays.
• Discussion of the future directions of these technologies.

About your workshop leader

Ryan McGuinness was trained in genetics and cell biology at the University of California at Davis. Since 1988 he has worked in several biotechnology companies and spent time as a private research consultant. His research background encompasses broad areas of molecular cell biology including gene therapy, cellular therapeutics, receptor-mediated signal transduction and functional pharmacology. Ryan has also held customer-facing positions related to the introduction of novel technologies to the Biopharmaceutical industry. He has most recently contributed his expertise to the development and commercialization of the Cell Key System family of label-free products at MDS Analytical Technologies. Working at the forefront of label-free cell based assays Ryan has developed numerous applications, published multiple scientific communications and lead collaborations world wide with well-known drug discovery teams from companies like Merck, Amgen, J & J, Novartis and AstraZeneca.

Day 1
Day One, Wednesday 21st April 2010

09:30 Registration and refreshments

10:00 Opening address from the Chair

Rochdi Bouhelal
Senior Investigator

10:10 Novel trends in high-throughput screening
• The integrated approach to quantity, quality and cost efficiency
• Single cell analysis vs. bulk cell assays
• Miniaturization towards future screening platforms

Professor Helene Andersson Svahn
Research Leader, Department of Nanobiotechnology, Royal Institute of Technology
Managing Director, PicoVitro

10:50 Emerging GPCR assay technologies for drug discovery
• Functional assays for GPCR drug discovery and uHTS
• GPCR functional assays and assays to identify biased ligands
• Label-free and other assay technologies for GPCRs spanning from recombinant to physiologically relevant cell systems

Dr. Priya Kunapuli
Director, In Vitro Sciences
External Discovery and Pre-Clinical Sciences
Merck Research Laboratories

11:30 Morning refreshments

11:50 Whole-cell label-free screening for GPCR ligands
• Direct comparison of impedance-based (CellKey) and optical-based instruments (BIND and Epic) for Gi, Gq, and Gs-coupled receptors
• Detecting and distinguishing activation of multiple G-proteins and thus functional selectivity
• An expanding niche for label-free approaches in GPCR screening

Dr. Matthew Peters
Principal Scientist, Lead Generation

12:30 Challenges in kinase-inhibitor screening
• Bottlenecks in target identification
• Crowded chemical space
• Kinase inhibitor toxicities
• Emerging resistance phenomena
• Selectivity issues

Dr. Jurgen Moll
Director, Department of Cell Biology & Oncology
Nerviano Medical Sciences

13:10 Networking lunch

14:30 Development of a label-free imager for monitoring stem cell chemotaxis, invasion, and differentiation
• BIND® - a versatile, label-free system for high-throughput cell-based assays
• High-throughput, low cell number chemotaxis and invasion assays – without transwells
• BIND Imager® enables high-throughput, label-free assays for stem cell differentiation

Dr. Steven Shamah
Director of Cell Biology
SRU Biosystems

15:10 Accelerated high-content screening
• Cell-cycle specific assays
• Apoptosis and cell death

Dr. Julian Burke
Chief Executive Officer

15:50 Afternoon refreshments

16:10 High-throughput 3D cell cultures for drug discovery and human toxicology
• Cell-based microarray platforms
• Adoption of multiple cell-based assays into high-throughput format
• Metabolism-based toxicity screening for pharmaceuticals and cosmetics

Dr. Jonathan Dordick
Director, Center for Biotechnology & Interdisciplinary Studies Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute
Co-Founder, Solidus Biosciences

16:50 Panel discussion: A network view of disease and compound screening
Topics discussed will include: overcoming limitations of HTS and HCS, integrating omics data for drug discovery, and understanding and exploiting gene networks for drug development. Please email any questions you have for the panel to:

Chair: Dr. Maria Flocco, Senior Director, Lead Discovery and Structural Biology & Biophysics
Panelists: Dr. Maite de los Frailes, Manager of Screening and Compound Profiling, Molecular Discovery Research, GlaxoSmithKline
Dr. Stephan Heyse, Head of Lead Discovery Informatics, Genedata
Dr. Rune Linding, Team Leader, Cellular and Molecular Logic Team, Institute of Cancer Research

17:30 Closing remarks from the chair

17:40 Networking drinks
Take your discussions further and build new relationships in a relaxed and informal setting

Day 2
Day Two, Thursday 22nd April 2010

09:30 Registration and refreshments

10:00 Opening address from the Chair

Dr. Stefan O. Mueller
Global Head, Early, Genetic and Molecular Toxicology
Merck Serono

10:10 Screening tools for toxicity and drug discovery
• Overview on screening tools for discovery toxicology
• Use of omics to explain and predict toxicities
• Hepatocytes for ADMET

Dr. Stefan O. Mueller
Global Head, Early, Genetic and Molecular Toxicology
Merck Serono

10:50 Human hepatocytes as an effective alternative experimental system for the evaluation of human drug properties
• Metabolic stability
• Drug-drug interactions and toxicity evaluation
• Transporter studies

Dr. Albert Li
President and Chief Executive Officer
Advanced Pharmaceutical Sciences

11:30 Morning refreshments

11:50 Functional hepatocytes from human induced pluripotent stem cells as liver disease models
• iPSC hepatocytes as alternatives to primary human hepatocytes
• Generation of a hepatocyte library
• Prospects for the identification and testing of new medicines and disease modelling

Professor Sir Ian Wilmut
Director, MRC Centre for Regenerative Medicine
University of Edinburgh

12:30 Human embryonic stem cells in drug testing & discovery
• hESCs as a model for embryotoxicity screening
• Disease-specific hESCs in biomarker and drug discovery
• What is preventing hESC utilisation at the rapid pace that befits their enormous potential?

Dr. Dusko Ilic
Senior Lecturer in Stem Cell Science
King’s College London

13:10 Networking lunch

14:10 Cell models and assays for investigative toxicology
• hESC derived cell models for hepatotoxicity and cardiotoxicity
• High content analysis for cellular toxicity
• Electrophysiology for cardiotoxicity

Dr. Nick Thomas
Principal Scientist
GE Healthcare

14:50 Use of human pluripotent stem cell derived cardiomyocytes for drug discovery and development
• Derivation and characteristics of cardiomyocytes from hESC
• Utility of hESC-derived cardiomyocytes for cardiotoxicity testing
• Validation and bench-marking to existing models

Dr. Peter Sartipy
Senior Principal Scientist & Project Manager

15:30 Afternoon refreshments

15:50 Panel discussion: Stem cells in drug development- where are we and what are prospects for the future?
Topics discussed will include: advantages and disadvantages over human primary cells, efficacy in pre-clinical testing, and current safety challenges. Please email any questions you have for the panel to:

16:30 A novel imaging-based high-throughput screening approach to anti-angiogenic drug discovery
• Limitations of current HTS compound screening
• An organotypic EC-vSMC co-culture assay system compatible with high-throughput/high-content image screening
• Quantitative evaluation of anti-angiogenic inhibitors

Dr. David Micklem
Chief Scientific Officer

17:10 Primary brain cells for drug screening: the brain chip platform
• Use of primary neurons for high content screening
• Dissecting cell-cell signaling in neuroinflammation

Dr. Fabio Bianco
Chief Executive Officer

17:50 Chair’s closing remarks

18:00 End of conference

Related Reports:

Cell Based Assays for Drug Discovery
Total Cell based Assays Market
Worldwide Cell based Assays Market
Stem Cell Therapeutics Markets
The 2009-2014 Outlook for Cell/tissue Culture Reagents in the United States


BSG House
BSG House, London, UK
United Kingdom