The University of New Mexico Center for Molecular Discovery
Bruce S. Edwards,
Tudor I Oprea,
Larry A. Sklar.
The University of New Mexico Center for Molecular Discovery (UNMCMD) is an
academic research center that specializes in discovery using high throughput flow cytometry (HTFC)
integrated with virtual screening, as well as knowledge mining and drug informatics. With a primary
focus on identifying small molecules that can be used as chemical probes and as leads for drug
discovery, it is a central core resource for research and translational activities at UNM that supports
implementation and management of funded screening projects as well as "up-front" services such as
consulting for project design and implementation, assistance in assay development and generation of
preliminary data for pilot projects in support of competitive grant applications. The HTFC platform
in current use represents advanced, proprietary technology developed at UNM that is now routinely
capable of processing bioassays arrayed in 96-, 384- and 1536-well formats at throughputs of 60,000 or more wells per
day. Key programs at UNMCMD include screening of research targets submitted by the international community through
NIH's Molecular Libraries Program; a multi-year effort involving translational partnerships at UNM directed towards
drug repurposing - identifying new uses for clinically approved drugs; and a recently established personalized medicine
initiative for advancing cancer therapy by the application of "smart" oncology drugs in selected patients based on response
patterns of their cancer cells in vitro. UNMCMD discoveries, innovation, and translation have contributed to a wealth of
inventions, patents, licenses and publications, as well as startup companies, clinical trials and a multiplicity of domestic
and international collaborative partnerships to further the research enterprise.
Keywords: 1536-well format, Hypercyt, drug discovery, drug repurposing, personalized medicine, efflux pumps, GTPases,
high throughput flow cytometry, NMMLSC, phenotypic screening.
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