The Wellcome Trust has awarded £4.7 million (€5.8 million) to EMBL’s European Bioinformatics Institute (EMBL-EBI) to support the transfer of a large collection of information on the properties and activities of drugs and a large set of drug-like small molecules from publicly listed company Galapagos NV to the public domain.
It will be incorporated into the EMBL-EBI’s collection of open-access data resources for biomedical research and will be maintained by a newly established team of scientists at the EMBL-EBI. These data lie at the heart of translating information from the human genome into successful new drugs in the clinic.
The human genome sequence provided a molecular ‘parts list’ for a human being, comprising all the genes and proteins that are encoded by our genetic blueprint. But to develop new medicines, it is important to catalogue how each of these ‘parts’ interacts with drugs and drug-like molecules. This interface of the genome with chemistry is a core part of the new scientific area of chemogenomics.
For the past eight years, researchers at BioFocus DPI, the service division of Galapagos, have been integrating the existing collections of information in these two areas to develop a set of well-structured chemogenomic databases that can be used to help determine whether a particular molecule has the right properties to make an effective drug. BioFocus DPI licensed this information to pharmaceutical and biotech companies worldwide. As part of the Wellcome Trust grant announced today, the EBI will obtain the rights to the databases from BioFocus DPI. The award will make it possible to provide free access to this information for all researchers. “The scientific community worldwide will greatly benefit from unrestricted access to these data.
It will aid their efforts in predictive drug discovery,” says Galapagos CEO Onno van de Stolpe. “Galapagos has successfully accelerated its research programmes with these, and BioFocus DPI used the data to deliver on its contracts with customers. After this transfer, which we hope will contribute to the advancement of drug discovery research by improving access to the data that we have collected, we will continue to use these resources.”
The transfer will empower academia to participate in the first stages of drug discovery for all therapeutic areas, including major diseases of the developing world. In future it could also result in improved prediction of drug side-effects. “We are excited to be able to provide information that defines the effects of a large number of small molecules on the body, and link this to the proteins that these molecules interact with, as part of our mission to provide wide access to bioinformatics tools to promote scientific progress and disseminate cutting-edge technologies to industry,” says EMBL-EBI Director Janet Thornton. “With this transfer, we aim to facilitate faster and better drug discovery. It speaks to the importance of this information for translational research that the Wellcome Trust has chosen to support this particular transfer with sufficient long-term funding.”
This unprecedented transfer of pharmaceutical data resources from the private sector to the public domain will have the greatest impact on researchers in academia and in small companies on limited budgets. “The Wellcome Trust has a strong commitment to making vital research tools freely available to the academic research community,” says Dr Alan Schafer, Head of Molecular and Physiological Sciences at theWellcome Trust. “Enabling these previously proprietary data to enter the public domain will allow researchers worldwide to make free use of knowledge essential for drug discovery.
Cath Brooksbank | alfa
Scientist from Kiel University coordinates Million Euros Project in Inflammation Research
19.01.2017 | Christian-Albrechts-Universität zu Kiel
Radio astronomers score high marks in the competition for EU funding
12.01.2017 | Max-Planck-Institut für Radioastronomie
An important step towards a completely new experimental access to quantum physics has been made at University of Konstanz. The team of scientists headed by...
Yersiniae cause severe intestinal infections. Studies using Yersinia pseudotuberculosis as a model organism aim to elucidate the infection mechanisms of these...
Researchers from the University of Hamburg in Germany, in collaboration with colleagues from the University of Aarhus in Denmark, have synthesized a new superconducting material by growing a few layers of an antiferromagnetic transition-metal chalcogenide on a bismuth-based topological insulator, both being non-superconducting materials.
While superconductivity and magnetism are generally believed to be mutually exclusive, surprisingly, in this new material, superconducting correlations...
Laser-driving of semimetals allows creating novel quasiparticle states within condensed matter systems and switching between different states on ultrafast time scales
Studying properties of fundamental particles in condensed matter systems is a promising approach to quantum field theory. Quasiparticles offer the opportunity...
Among the general public, solar thermal energy is currently associated with dark blue, rectangular collectors on building roofs. Technologies are needed for aesthetically high quality architecture which offer the architect more room for manoeuvre when it comes to low- and plus-energy buildings. With the “ArKol” project, researchers at Fraunhofer ISE together with partners are currently developing two façade collectors for solar thermal energy generation, which permit a high degree of design flexibility: a strip collector for opaque façade sections and a solar thermal blind for transparent sections. The current state of the two developments will be presented at the BAU 2017 trade fair.
As part of the “ArKol – development of architecturally highly integrated façade collectors with heat pipes” project, Fraunhofer ISE together with its partners...
19.01.2017 | Event News
10.01.2017 | Event News
09.01.2017 | Event News
19.01.2017 | Earth Sciences
19.01.2017 | Life Sciences
19.01.2017 | Physics and Astronomy