Universiteit Leiden

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Leiden Early Drug Discovery & Development

Target Discovery

The goal of target discovery is to identify and validate proteins and biological pathways that are involved in the disease process. Modulating these target proteins and pathways with small molecules, therapeutic proteins or other biomolecules (e.g. mRNA) could deliver an effective and safe drug or vaccine.

LED3 hosts excellent facilities for target discovery

The LED3 Network houses several state-of-the-art facilities in which we develop innovative technologies and chemical tools for target identification and validation. For example, we can use the high-throughput imaging microscopes in the Cell Observatory to perform phenotypic screening in combination with CRISPRi libraries. 

Access to Omics

We also utilize many Omics-technologies, such as genomics, transcriptomics, proteomics and metabolomics. The Metabolomics facility has multiple advanced mass spectrometers to measure large networks of different metabolites in cells, tissue and clinical samples, while the Chemical Proteomics facility develops and uses activity-based probes to identify active enzymes in biological samples. Next, we apply artificial intelligence methods to analyze large data sets generated by the various Omics-technologies.
Extensive experience is available in molecular biology, biochemistry and cell biology. Bio-orthogonal chemistry is being used to study cellular processes, and also at the level of individual molecules using STORM - Confocal microscopy.

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