SLAS2021 Digital


25-27 January, 2021

We’re excited to announce we’ll be exhibiting at #SLAS2021 Digital! Come find us in the virtual exhibition to learn more about dragonfly discovery! Or, set up an appointment to chat with us via the Matchmaking tool. 

Make sure to carve out 30 minutes to “stop by” our #SLAS2021 Exhibitor Tutorial on Tuesday 26th January 10.00-10.30 EST 

Next generation drug discovery workflows enabled by technology innovation

The benefits of automating drug discovery workflows have long been recognized. While early efforts have focussed on increasing the screening throughput of simple biochemical assays, recent developments have aimed to increase the quality and physiological relevance of the data generated. Improved experimental models, highly automated and integrated workflows, as well as miniaturised reaction volumes all contribute to delivering enhanced drug discovery efficiencies.

This tutorial showcases two novel drug discovery workflows enabled by SPT Labtech’s mosquito® low volume liquid handler and dragonfly® discovery reagent dispenser:

Dr Ben Housden (Research Fellow, University of Exeter Medical School, UK) will present a new method to conduct larger and more efficient high throughput functional genomics screens. This approach first uses cross species screening to identify targets with the greatest chance of translation into complex model systems. This is followed by an innovative screening assay, called Variable Dose Analysis (VDA). The VDA method generates a gradient of expression of the target gene across a population of cells and assesses how phenotypes change with expression level. This leads to a dose curve [response]? readout for each target gene screened, improving detection of genetic interactions by increasing signal-to-noise ratio and allowing analysis of essential genes.

Using an interdisciplinary approach combining laboratory automation, machine learning and improved vector design, Ben’s group has developed two new variants of the VDA method allowing screens to be performed with up to: four-fold increased speed, 10-fold reduced reagent requirements and 12- fold enhancements in data quality. 

Dr Daniel Thomas (Head of Discovery Biology, Arctoris, UK) will discuss the importance of accurate experimental design, coupled with flawless execution and integration of consistent data, as critical factors for ensuring the fidelity of high-quality decision-making in drug discovery. Issues with experimental reproducibility are not new, and confidence in the accuracy of research findings remains low. Coupled with the current levels of operational vulnerability caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, these factors have prompted a fundamental reassessment of strategic priorities.

In this presentation Daniel will examine how these challenges can be overcome through the utilization of specialist outsourced capabilities and will highlight how these can deliver the critical data sets to keep projects on time while ensuring the accuracy and precision required. Daniel will also show how innovative, cutting-edge liquid handling, automation, and detection technologies can enable scientists to directly design, and remotely run, experiments to deliver this paradigm shift at an unprecedented scale and speed.

 Register here