r Hugh Rosen, curator of a library of 16,000 chemical compounds known as the Maybridge Hitfinder Collection. By applying these compounds, one by one, along with the probe molecule, to solutions of PRMT1, the team was able to determine the compounds' abilities to bind PRMT1's active site and thus act as inhibitors. Importantly, the setup was simple enough to be adapted, with Rosen's help, as an automated, "high-throughput" technique, capable of screening thousands of compounds.
In this way, the scientists were able to sift through the compound library to find two candidate PRMT1-selective inhibitors. "They have good efficacy and specificity, and we might be able to modify them to make them even better," said Dillon.
Mowen, Dillon, and their colleagues now have a National Institutes of Health (NIH) grant to use their screening technique with a 300,000-compound NIH library, also curated at Scripps Research. "Once we get the results from this larger screen, we'll consider our best inhibitor compounds and decide which ones to start optimizing," said Dillon.
To Mowen, the success of the project owes much to the collaborative spirit at Scripps Research. "Many labs here are developing cutting-edge technologies that empower other labs' work, and certainly we were able to benefit from that," she said. "It's a very supportive, synergistic environment."
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