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Pharmaceutical Sciences
target identification in drug discovery and the formulation of a drug compound

Target identification in drug discovery and the formulation of a drug compound

Target Identification

Unravelling the complex relationship between genotype, expression, protein function and disease is the basis for identifying new drug targets in drug discovery. Nikon’s HC high content imaging system provides a power platform for efficiently screening for potential drug targets.  Automated image acquisition and data analysis means large quantities of samples can be screened. NIS-Elements HC software which controls both acquisition and data analysis, can automatically assess incoming data to modify and optimize data acquisition protocols. This method reduces accumulation of unnecessary data and streamlines both acquisition and final data analysis. After narrowing down potential drug targets, researchers can use other higher resolution imaging techniques such as confocal and super-resolution to delve into the molecular and cellular effects of the drugs.


The LV100N research polarising microscope, the multi-purpose AZ100 Multizoom upright zoom microscope, covering a wide range of magnifications, and Nikon’s top of the range high zoom SMZ25 and SMZ18 stereomicroscopes, in particular, can be used to study a wide range of physicochemical properties. The way in which a drug compound is combined with excipients (such as: binders, diluents, solubilisers and disintegrants) in, for example, tablets, capsules, creams, pastes and gels can be critical to the performance of the active ingredient. The formulation must also be fully characterised to ensure product efficacy and patient safety and lack of susceptibility to microbial contamination.

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