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Pelago Bioscience and CBCS collaborates


Pelago Bioscience and Chemical Biology Consortium Sweden (CBCS), the chemical biology facility at Karolinska Institutet and SciLifeLab (Science for Life Laboratory) will collaborate to develop high throughput automated CETSA-based Target Engagement Assays for multiple targets.

The collaboration is based on expanding Pelago’s CETSA technology capabilities and will enable screening of large chemical libraries for identification of novel chemical leads with high drug potential. While target engagement assays have long been recognised as pivotal to targeted drug efficacy, Pelago’s CETSA method adds a new dimension to this valuable assay as it allows measurements to be made within cellular systems. Researchers have for the first time been able to measure directly how a compound interacts with its target within the cell and also within patient tissue.

Previous collaborations between CBCS and the inventors of CETSA resulted in the reformatting of the original CETSA method to a format amenable for High-Throughput Screening (HTS) as well as the successful performance of the very first small molecule screening campaign based on CETSA. This new collaboration with Pelago will develop assays for a variety of key signalling proteins important in cell proliferation and metabolism and will enhance the automation of the CETSA HT method.


Together these developments will allow pharmaceutical R&D companies to either incorporate these CETSA HT assays directly into their own HTS programs or to utilise Pelago’s own HTS services; allowing them to rapidly fill important gaps in the drug discovery value chain.

“This is very good news for drug discovery since the scientists at CBCS have such great knowledge of assay automation in general and CETSA in particular. We could not have wished for a better collaborator to develop valuable CETSA HT assays, which have the capacity to transform targeted drug discovery,” commented CEO of Pelago Bioscience, Dr. Michael Dabrowski.

“Collaborations with SME’s, such as Pelago, are very important to the chemical biology facility at SciLifeLab and will strengthen our capabilities as a national infrastructure for chemical biology research. Importantly, CETSA is one of our cutting-edge competences, and CBCS aims to be in the forefront in the development of new applications of this powerful technology. Ultimately, this will be of great benefit for academic users of the infrastructure,” said Dr. Anna-Lena Gustavsson, Director of CBCS at Karolinska Institutet/SciLifeLab.

“We are very happy with this collaboration which is well in line with SciLifeLab’s increased focus to deliver excellent science, not just to the academic and health care community, but also to industry.  We encourage more opportunities that harness the combined strength of Sweden’s Life Science sector, contributing to Sweden’s global competitiveness,” said Dr. Lars Hammarström, Strategic Relations Officer at SciLifeLab.