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Issue 5 2010

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Article 5: The implementation of rapid microbiological methods

1 November 2010 | By Michael J. Miller, President, Microbiology Consultants, LLC

This is the fifth in a series of articles on rapid microbiological methods that will appear in European Pharmaceutical Review during 2010. In my previous four articles, I have provided an overview of the benefits of rapid microbiological methods (RMMs) as compared with conventional methods, validation strategies and regulatory perspectives…

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Applying PAT in pharmaceutical processes

1 November 2010 | By Mario Hellings, Tom Van den Kerkhof, Jeroen Geens and Steve Mehrman, Johnson & Johnson

As cited by the FDA, “Process Analytical Technology (PAT) is a system for designing, analysing, and controlling manufacturing through timely measurements (i.e., during processing) of critical quality and performance attributes of raw and in-process materials and processes with the goal of ensuring final product quality.”1 The main goal of PAT…

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Biomarkers in drug discovery and development

1 November 2010 | By Attila A. Seyhan.Translational Immunology, Inflammation and Immunology, Pfizer

Robust and validated biomarkers are needed to improve diagnosis, monitor drug activity and therapeutic response and guide the development of safer and targeted therapies for various chronic diseases. While different types of biomarkers have been impactful in the field of drug discovery and development, the process of identifying and validating…

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Advances in two-dimensional cell migration assay technologies

1 November 2010 | By Andreas Vogt, Department of Pharmacology and Chemical Biology and the University of Pittsburgh Drug Discovery Institute, University of Pittsburgh

Cell motility plays an important role in many human diseases and normal cellular processes. Cell migration is critical for wound healing as cells of the inflammatory system and fibroblasts populate the wound and initiate re-epithelialisation1. On the other hand, unregulated cell migration contributes to cancer cell invasion and metastasis2. Agents…

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Functional genomics as a tool for guiding personalised cancer treatment

29 October 2010 | By Roderick Beijersbergen, Group Leader Molecular Carcinogenesis, the Netherlands Cancer Institute

Improved understanding of the molecular alterations in cancer cells has fuelled the development of more specific and directed cancer therapies. However, it has become clear that response rates can be low due to confounding genetic alterations that render these highly specific therapies ineffective. As a result, the costs of cancer…

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The evolution of RNAi technologies in the drug discovery business

29 October 2010 | By Jason Borawski and L. Alex Gaither, Novartis Institutes for Biomedical Research

In the past decade, the pharmaceutical industry has exploited the naturally occurring cellular RNAi pathway to enhance drug discovery research. The RNAi pathway, triggered by dsRNA, selectively, although not always specifically, degrades mRNA leading to substantial decreases in post-transcriptional gene expression1. Researchers have capitalised on this intrinsic pathway by synthesising…

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Bio-mimetic chromatography to predict drug distribution in vivo

29 October 2010 | By Klara Valko, Analytical Chemistry, GlaxoSmithKline Medicines Research Centre

A major concern for the pharmaceutical industry is the high attrition rate (>90 per cent) of potential drug molecules failing during late stages of the drug discovery process. This may be due to lack of efficacy in the clinic, unexpected side effects or unfavourable pharmacokinetics. There is a need for…

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The Sequencing Revolution: enabling personal genomics and personalised medicine

29 October 2010 | By Bhupinder Bhullar, Novartis Institute for Biomedical Research

It has been 10 years since the completion of the first draft of the human genome. Today, we are in the midst of a full assault on the human genetic code, racing to uncover the genetic mechanisms that affect disease, aging, happiness, violence ... and just about every imaginable human…

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MS-based clinical proteomics: biomarker discovery in men’s cancer

29 October 2010 | By Brian Flatley Dept of Chemistry, University of Reading, Reading and Harold Hopkins Dept of Urology, Royal Berkshire NHS Foundation Trust Hospital, Reading and Peter Malone Harold Hopkins Dept of Urology, Royal Berkshire NHS Foundation Trust Hospital, Reading and Rainer Cramer Dept of Chemistry, University of Reading, Reading

Each year, approximately 10,000 men in the UK die as a result of prostate cancer (PCa) making it the third most common cancer behind lung and breast cancer. Worldwide, more than 670,000 men are diagnosed every year with the disease. Current methods of diagnosis of PCa mainly rely on the…