HIPS Talk: "Drug Discovery in Academia"

Tuesday, March 10, 2020, at 16:30 s.t. in Bldg E8.1, Seminar Room (Ground Floor)

Prof. Dr. Oliver Plettenburg (Leibniz Universität Hannover) will give a presentation entitled
“Drug Discovery in Academia”

When?: Tuesday, March 10, 2020, at 16:30 s.t.
Where?: in Bldg E8.1, Seminar Room (Ground Floor)
Host: Prof. Dr. Anna Hirsch

There is opportunity to talk with the speaker before the talk.
For details and for making appointments please contact Annette Herkströter or Lisa Andre Titz at 0681-98806-2001 or per email: office-ddop@helmholtz-hips.de
Guests are welcome!

Despite all efforts and scientific advances, success rates in current drug development are still unsustainably low. Some of the challenges of drug discovery and potential contributions of academia will be discussed.
As an example, an improved understanding of the animal models used for selecting compounds for further progression can be regarded as a key for successful drug development and needs to be addressed already at early project stages. Particularly animal models resembling chronic diseases are frequently compromised by high inter-animal variability and heterogeneous disease development, resulting in the necessity to employ large groups of animals to reach statistical significance.
A major challenge in the development of novel therapeutics for these diseases is thus to properly characterize the disease state of an individual animal at a given point in time in an ongoing longitudinal pharmacological study to define the most appropriate timepoint for therapeutic intervention and to properly assess the efficacy of the applied drug in vivo.
Different aspects and applications of molecular imaging based approaches to facilitate preclinical drug development will be presented. This will particularly include illustrating examples for in-vivo imaging of enzymatic activity and design and characterization of targeted imaging reagents to improve characterization of distinct disease stages. Consequent implementation of similar target validation approaches will lead to an improved understanding of disease pathogenesis and of the employed animal models and thus ultimately reduce attrition rates.

Oliver Plettenburg, PhD, is full professor for ‘Medicinal Chemistry’ at Leibniz Universität Hannover and director of the Institute of Medicinal Chemistry of the Helmholtz Center Munich. Before rejoining academia he spent more than fourteen years in a major pharmaceutical venture, last he held positions as “Head of Chemical Biology” and “Head of Biosensors and Chemical Probes”. His research focuses on hit and lead optimization of promising compounds for treatment of devastating diseases, development of innovative targeted and smart drug delivery methods and synthesis of novel imaging agents for in-vivo monitoring of pathogenesis.