Kirkland, WA — Researchers at Rosetta Inpharmatics, Inc. ( http://www.rii.com ) in the July 7th issue of Cell, reported significant findings demonstrating how high quality, comprehensive gene expression analysis data and powerful computational methods coupled with appropriate genetically modified organisms can be used to decipher the function of previously uncharacterized genes. As described in Cell, the use of this approach enabled Rosetta Inpharmatics to identify a new drug target that had not been previously identified.
Rosetta Inpharmatics’ scientists were able to generate a database of comprehensive gene expression profiles of cells with a wide variety of phenotypes and following different chemical treatments through the accurate and systematic analysis of gene expression en masse. This compendium of gene expression profiles was then used as a pattern matching tool to identify novel gene functions or to understand the biochemical basis of drug action. The results were demonstrated using a FDA reviewed and approved non-prescription drug.
“The compendium approach to global gene expression profiling described and demonstrated by Rosetta Inpharmatics has applications in new drug discovery and development,” explained Roger Ulrich, Ph.D., Director of Regulatory Toxicology and Safety Pharmacology for Abbott Laboratories, and Diplomate, American Board of Toxicology. “In biomedical research, perturbations in gene regulation and subsequent effects on cell function are thought to be responsible for many diseases, including cancer and diabetes. The scientist engaged in new drug discovery generally views these perturbations as potential targets for new drugs, and to the toxicologist, each pathway may also indicate or fingerprint potential adverse effects.”
According to Dr. Ulrich, “Traditional methods for discovering and exploring new targets and for examining drug effects, both beneficial and adverse, are quite time-consuming.” Dr. Ulrich emphasized that “time more than materials drives up the cost of new drug discovery, and the inability to establish a satisfactory therapeutic index early drives up both costs and the rate of failure for new drug candidates.”
Rosetta Inpharmatics offers solutions to the emerging field of informational genomics. By combining the power of informatics and genomics, Rosetta has created a proprietary platform that accelerates and enhances the drug discovery process for pharmaceutical and biotechnology companies, and improves agricultural products. Rosetta Inpharmatics’ approach converts the rapidly growing amount of gene expression data, or information about a gene’s activity, into organized, statistically driven, information-based results. Rosetta Inpharmatics provides a proprietary gene expression profiling platform, consisting of hardware and software products, that uses gene expression profiles to provide seamless solutions for efficient, cost-effective and powerful discovery programs. Rosetta Inpharmatics’ technology builds a critical mass of coherent gene expression data collected from DNA microarrays, which are comprised of DNA fragments attached to glass slides in a grid-like formation. This platform provides comprehensive, simultaneous descriptions of a compound’s effect on all relevant targets within a cell.