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Drug Discovery

Image: A hairpin loop from a pre-mRNA. Highlighted are the nucleobases (green) and the ribose-phosphate backbone (blue). This is a single strand of RNA that folds back upon itself (Photo courtesy of Wikimedia Commons).

Identifying Potential Drugs that Modify RNA Expression

A team of drug developers has described a small molecule microarray-based approach that allows for unmodified low molecular weight compounds, including [U.S.] Food and Drug Administration-approved drugs, to be probed for binding to RNA motif libraries in a massively parallel format. More...
12 Jul 2018
Image: Three-dimensional super-resolution microscopy shows that breast cancer cells (left) contain many large multivesicular bodies (green and red) that are full of exosomes ready to be released from the cell. In the absence of Munc13-4 (right), multivesicular bodies are much smaller and incapable of releasing their contents (Photo courtesy of Messenger et al., 2018).

Enzyme Elimination Blocks Exosome Release and Slows Cancer

Cancer researchers identified a molecular mechanism that enables aggressive cancer cells to manufacture and secrete large numbers of exosomes, which are critical for cancer progression and spreading. More...
04 Jul 2018
Image: Atherosclerotic lesions appear in red in this photomicrograph of a mouse aorta (Photo courtesy of Cedars-Sinai Medical Center).

Excess Inflammasome Activity Leads to Formation of Atherosclerosis

Results presented in a recently published paper explain how chronic inflammation of the arterial walls progresses to arteriosclerosis, a disorder characterized by clogged arteries and increased risk of heart attack and stroke. More...
03 Jul 2018
Image: A mixed surface–ribbon representation of the catalytic domain of human poly (ADP-ribose) polymerase 1 (PARP1) binding the small-molecule inhibitor olaparib (shown as a space-filling model) (Photo courtesy of Wikimedia Commons).

Anticancer Duo Kills Tumors While Preventing Relapse

A suggested new therapeutic approach for killing tumor cells simultaneously blocks both the PARP and RAD52 DNA repair pathways. More...
28 Jun 2018
Image: Extracellular vesicle-like metal-organic framework nanoparticles are developed for the intracellular delivery of biofunctional proteins. The biomimetic nanoplatform can protect the protein cargo and overcome various biological barriers to achieve systemic delivery and autonomous release (Photo courtesy of the Zheng Laboratory, Pennsylvania State University).

Novel Use of Nanoparticles Developed for Targeted Drug Delivery

The innovative use of metal-organic framework nanoparticles has enabled the development of a delivery system for therapeutic proteins that selectively targets tumor cells. More...
26 Jun 2018
Image: In the transition from benign to malignant, cancer cells transition from stiff to soft. Mechanotargeting harnesses mechanics to improve targeting efficiency of nanoparticle-based therapeutic agents (Photo courtesy of the Zhang Laboratory, Pennsylvania State University).

Novel Method Designed to Destroy Only Malignant Cells

A novel system for targeted release of drugs to kill malignant cancer cells depends on the shape and mechanical properties of the cells rather than the presence of specific biomarker molecules. More...
24 Jun 2018
Image: The structure of the RNase L enzyme (Photo courtesy of Wikimedia Commons).

Molecule-Based System Rids Cells of Unwanted RNAs

Researchers seeking ways to modify gene expression have developed a small-molecule-based tool that can recruit a nuclease to a specific gene transcript, triggering its destruction. More...
12 Jun 2018


The Drug Discovery channel in BioResearch informs about the biotechnology of drug discovery and design from traditional to translational pharma within the five-year horizon.
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