Proposed Meeting: Genomics as a Tool for Drug Discovery

Dave39NJ at Dave39NJ at
Wed Jan 31 09:15:01 EST 1996

     I am soliciting speakers for a proposed symposium at the New York
Academy of Sciences (NYAS); the title will be something like "Bioinformatics
as a Tool for Drug Discovery".  The goal will be to discuss how the current
and future databases of expressed sequences can be searched and analyzed to
find the molecular basis for disease processes such as cancer, asthma, heart
disease, etc., and then how to use that information to find novel small
molecules that are therapeutically effective.
     Symposia take place on one afternoon at the NYAS and have four speakers.
 There are usually about a hundred attendees from academic and industrial
institutions, mostly from the New York area.  Transportation, hotel and meal
expenses are paid by the NYAS; staff there also assist in making
     The target audience will probably be familiar with some of the tools
available through GCG, NCBI, Expasy, etc., and will be aware of the coming
tidal wave of genomic information, but will not be quite sure how best to use
this information to to discover new targets for disease intervention.  The
type of queries I envision, and they may be quite naive, are: does there
exist a serpentine receptor that is over-expressed in, say, metastatic breast
cancer?   What is its ligand?  What other proteins might it interact with?
 Will inhibiting the receptor/ligand interaction have any therapeutic value,
or is its overexpression a red herring?  More generally, at what point will
you have to go to the bench to confirm virtual leads?  Has anyone
successfully used bioinformatics to discover truly new avenues of medical
research?  What is the time frame for the maturation of bioinformatics into a
pervasive and proven drug discovery tool?  
     If you have any suggestions for speakers please email me at
david.whyte at  Thanks.

More information about the Bionews mailing list