High-Throughput Screening & Assay Development

Led by Dr. Yuhong Du, the High-Throughput Screening and Assay Development team provides state-of-the-art HTS capabilities with multiple integrated robotic systems. These capabilities are complemented by our expertise in assay development, screening informatics, and lead discovery

Assay Design

  • Biochemical assays
  • Cell-based assays
  • Image-based assays
  • Whole organism-based assays

NIH Chemical Genomics Assay Guidance Manual including a chapter on inhibition of protein-protein interactions by ECBDC Associate Director, Yuhong Du

High-Throughput Screening

Screening Systems

We have established multiple independent, parallel robotic systems for HTS/μHTS/iHTS and HCS operations that are capable of handling 96-, 384-, and 1536-well plate formats. These systems accommodate a variety of assay formats and are particularly well-suited for conventional and multiplex protein-protein interactions and phenotypic screens.

  • HTS/HCS system I: The first system features a central vertical robotic system with three outpost readers: (i) EnVision multimode reader (HTS in 96/384/1536 well format), (ii) FlexStation II agonist-injectable, 384-well fluorescence reader, and (iii) ImageXpress (HCS in 96/384-well format). This system is integrated with a cell hotel, plate stacker, and various liquid handlers equipped with pin tools for low-volume (nL) transfer. All of these components are in an enclosed environment, facilitating live-cell HCS screens under aseptic conditions.
  • HTS/HCS system II: The second system features the Twister II robot integrated with (i) an EnVision multimode reader (HTS in 96/384/1536-well format) and (ii) ImageXpress (HCS in 96/384/1536 well format) supported by the Sciclone liquid handling workstation.
  • System III: Corning’s Epic system for label-free molecular interaction screens provides a third platform for hit identification and confirmation by direct detection of protein-compound binding and cell-based screens under physiological conditions.

Compound library collections

We have a collection of more than 500K chemical compounds, including:

  • Bioactive compounds
  • FDA approved drugs
  • Natural products
  • Diversity libraries