Biomarker Technologies for Drug Discovery

Several biomarker technologies are used for drug discovery. Those based on pro- teomics, and metabolomics will be discussed briefly in this section. The trend is to integrate various “-omics” technologies for drug discovery.

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K.K. Jain, The Handbook of Biomarkers, DOI 10.1007/978-1-4939-7431-3_4

Role of biomarkers in drug discovery and development process (© Jain PharmaBiotech)

Fig. 4.1 Role of biomarkers in drug discovery and development process (© Jain PharmaBiotech)

Proteomics-Based Biomarkers for Drug Discovery

Use of proteomic technologies for discovery of biomarkers was described in Chap. 2. Here it will be extended to applications for drug discovery. Although biomarker discovery and drug discovery are considered separately, the two applications merge in case of proteomics. Biomarkers identified through proteomics can be used directly for drug discovery because proteins represent the majority of drug targets. Proteomic studies can focus on previously unrecognized pathways that may be tar- getable by drugs. As the drug development process proceeds further from discovery to clinical trials, the parallel process of biomarker validation and translation is important.

Some of the challenges of biomarker discovery and validation are due to complexity of the human proteome as numerous proteins may derive from a single gene sequence by over 300 posttranslational events. For the drug discovery phase common to biomarker and drug target identification, robust technologies are available for protein separation and identification. 2D-GE and LC-MS/MS are complementary technologies. The translation of biomarkers from discovery to the clinic also requires the development of immunochemical methods for performing validation studies followed by multiplexed assays that can be applied in a high throughput routine.

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