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NIH, Eli Lilly to Partner on Drug Effects Profiles

Pills and drug bottles (


National Institutes of Health and Eli Lilly and Company will produce a public resource that catalogs the effects of thousands of approved and investigational medicines in a variety of testing systems. Biological profiles of these medicines and molecules are expected to help biomedical researchers better predict treatment outcomes and improve drug development.

NIH’s new National Center for Advancing Translational Sciences (NCATS) will offer its pharmaceutical collection for screening by Lilly’s Phenotypic Drug Discovery panel. The NCATS pharmaceutical collection has assembled physical samples of 3,800 approved and investigational medicines for high-throughout screening.

The collection draws from the set of approved drugs and bioactives in the Therapeutics for Rare and Neglected Diseases program. The collection also captures samples from the Computational Toxicology Research Program (Tox21), a collaboration of NIH, Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), National Toxicology Program (NTP), and Food and Drugs Administration (FDA).

Phenotypic Drug Discovery (PD2) panel offers a series of assays that can uncover mechanisms or pathways of potential drugs, and in the case of this collaboration with NIH, approved drugs as well. The PD2 panel has, according to Lilly, sophisticated pathway-related assays applicable to cardiovascular diseases, cancer, and endocrine disorders, among others.

Screenings are expected take place over the next 12 to 18 months, with results made available online at the NCATS pharmaceutical collection site. Any activities that result from the findings will be up to the owners of the compounds, but could result in actions such as new studies or collaborations to test current drugs against new targets, or additional lab research to produce new medicines.

Read more: Robotic System to Test 10,000 Compounds for Toxicity

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