The Drug Discovery Institute has received a Shared Instrumentation Grant (S10) of over one million dollars to purchase a new state-of-the-art Opera Phenix High Content Imaging System. The instrument will support drug discovery and advanced biomedical research requiring HCS in the Pittsburgh region, as exemplified by projects that span a wide range of applications, including: genetically modified cellular models; zebrafish chemical screening; human microphysiology systems; and microvascular organoids from pluripotent stem cells. The range of diseases is likewise broad and reflects the diversity of biomedical research in the Pittsburgh area, including: NAFLD, Type 2 Diabetes, Liver Cancer, Neurodegenerative diseases, and Metastatic Cancer, as well as other initiatives across the institution. A common theme among many projects is the application of Quantitative Systems Pharmacology (QSP), where HCS enables the integrated use of multiscale experimental and computational methods to identify mechanisms of disease progression and to test predicted therapeutic strategies likely to achieve clinical validation for appropriate subpopulations of patients. UPDDI welcomes inquiries for collaborative translational projects.
Modern drug discovery increasingly demands better and more disease relevant models and the ability to analyze them. High-content screening (HCS) has become indispensable in the analysis of such models as it permits the analysis of cells, their constituents, and interactions in their proper biological context. The third generation HCS instrument, Opera Phenix, produces the quality and quantity of data from cells, tissues and experimental animals that are required for computational and systems biological investigations, while at the same time providing the throughput needed for automated screening.