Target discovery using the molecular approach, as opposed to the more traditional systems approach
requires the study of the cellular or biological process underlying a condition or disease. The approaches
that are employed by the “bench” scientist may be genetic, genomic or proteomic and each has its rightful place
in the drug-target discovery process. Affinity-based proteomic techniques currently used in drug-discovery draw upon
several disciplines, synthetic chemistry, cell-biology, biochemistry and mass spectrometry. An important component of
such techniques is the probe that is specifically designed to pick out a protein or set of proteins from amongst the varied
thousands in a cell lysate. A second component, that is just as important, is liquid-chromatography tandem massspectrometry
(LC-MS/MS). LC-MS/MS and the supporting theoretical framework has come of age and is the tool of
choice for protein identification and quantification. These proteomic tools are critical to maintaining the drug-candidate
supply, in the larger context of drug discovery.
Keywords: Affinity purification, drug-target discovery, immobilization, mass-spectrometry, probe, quantification.
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