National Infrastructure for Chemical Biology

openscreen-logo-csCZ-OPENSCREEN – website

Hosting institution: Institute of Molecular Genetics, CAS

Partner institutions:

The main aim of CZ-OPENSCREEN is to operate the state-of-the-art research infrastructure in the fields of chemical biology and genetics and to support a new interdisciplinary research approach by bridging traditional nature sciences such as cell biology, molecular and structural biology, biochemistry, organic chemistry and chem/bioinformatics. The CZ-OPENSREEN mission is to identify new molecular probes/tools for research and proof-of-concept compounds for the development of new potential therapeutics. Unlike commercial platforms, CZ OPENSCREEN also focuses on non-validated molecular targets, signalling pathways and neglected diseases. As a part of portfolio of offered services CZ OPENSCREEN builds a compound library consisting of diverse, commercially available compounds as well as chemical compounds synthesized originally in the Czech Republic. CZ OPENSCREEN represents a Czech national node of the pan-European research infrastructure EU-OPENSCREEN (European Infrastructure for Chemical Biology) and closely cooperates with other Czech research infrastructures such as CCP, CIISB, Czech-BioImaging, EATRIS-CZ and ELIXIR CZ.

Future development

CZ-OPENSCREEN currently employs a broad portfolio of biochemical and cell-based assays and technologies that will be further developed and strengthened, including several unique platforms focusing on nuclear receptors. It is also planned to establish procedures for transnational open access enabling to provide access and services for researchers beyond the EU OPENSCREEN activities (United States of America, Asia and Australia). The strong chem/bioinformatics platform will be further enhanced by development and implementation of innovative data mining and visualization tools that will allow users to efficiently analyse their data. CZ OPENSCREEN plans to primarily support projects from the biomedical field, but is open to other areas of life sciences like veterinary science, agrochemical and environmental sciences.

Socio-economic impact

Chemical biology practiced in academia is focused primarily on basic research and the understanding of molecular mechanisms of normal development and disease. However, it might have immediate impact on translational research, for example, identification and validation of novel activities of known drugs, ex vivo therapeutics and targeted experimental therapy. State-of-the-art equipment and chemical biology knowledge-base of CZ OPENSCREEN strengthens the position of the Czech Republic as very competitive in the life sciences. There is a high translational and application potential of research outcomes of CZ OPENSCREEN for pharmaceutical, biotechnology and agrochemical industries.