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In silico drug discovery software platform for the UK Ministry of Defence

A spin out company of the Institute of Life Science at Swansea University has recently delivered an in silico drug discovery software platform for the UK Ministry of Defence.

The software tool named TargetPath, developed for the identification of protein antibiotic or anti-bacterial target(s) within a pathogen, will be used by the scientists of Defence, Science and Technology Laboratory (Dstl) for the development of antimicrobials to meet the UK’s current and future defence and security needs.

TargetPath brings together the highly acclaimed protein structural modelling of Moleculomics, applied to four bacterial proteomes and the affinity docking of extensive compound (or drug) datasets to these proteins, all visualised by a web-friendly interface.  This for the first time, provides the end user a single coherent bioinformatics tool that extends all the way from genome-level information, through protein modelling, to ligand docking and analysis of potential protein-ligand interactions.

Dr Jon David, Dstl technical partner on the project explains “a key innovation of TargetPath is the comparative structural proteomics tool – it enables searching of whole proteomes to return proteins with homologous domains.  It is this functionality which gives potential for the development of antimicrobials which have the capacity to treat more than one bacterial infection”.

Dr Jonathan Mullins, Moleculomics CEO added “We are very pleased to have successfully delivered such a large and ambitious project.  Populated with over 28 million detailed molecular interactions, this platform represents a world first in terms of communicating molecular information at this scale”.

The recent delivery of TargetPath and similar tools such as Yeast3DProteome are testament to the success of this spin-out company who are leading the way on translational bioinformatics research.  These drug development platforms are projected to become the foundation to further successes since they can be populated with any number of different organisms or drugs – functionality which will underpin products such as Human3DProteome which will be launched in early 2017.

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