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Drug Target Discovery

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Drug Target Discovery

Microbial Genomics Methods for Drug Target Discovery

Over the past years, widespread antibiotic resistance has become an important threat to modern medicine, and has attracted much attention and efforts. Efforts to develop new antibiotics with novel drug targets may be a priority. Microbial genomics is a promising method for drug targets discovery. Coupled with powerful bioinformatics tools, it enables the identification, detection, selection, and validation of novel antibacterial pathways for the acceleration of the drug discovery process, through providing information about bacterial genome sequences, DNA methylation, and gene or protein expression levels on a genome-wide scale. Comparative genomic methods can identify highly conserved genes within and between bacterial species, making them attractive drug targets for the development of new antibiotics.

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Accelerate Your Drug Discovery Process

According to your specific needs, we employ various sequencing platforms, including Illumina Miseq/Hiseq, Roche 454, PacBio Sequel, and Nanopore MinION systems, to gain huge and accurate microbial genomic data. We provide comprehensive information about genomic sequence and annotation of bacterial and archaeal genomes, and perform comparative genomics and evolutionary studies to find out the key genes that participate in key bacterial processes using tools such as the TIGR Comprehensive Microbial Resource (CMR) and OrthoMCL standalone software.

The Main Research Directions

  • Understand how pathogens spread and cause disease.
  • Identify molecular determinants of virulence and symbiosis.
  • Identify new targets for therapies and antigens for vaccines.

What Can We Do?

  1. 1. High-throughput sequencing, such as 16S/18S/ITS sequencing, metagenomics, microbial whole genome sequencing, metatranscriptomics, et al.
  2. 2. Identification of promising drug targets through comparative genomics, orthology prediction, and gene essentiality prediction.
  3. 3. Validation of drug targets for novel antibiotics.

Note: Our service are for research use only, not for disease diagnosis or treatment.

Detectable Objects

Bacteria, fungi, archaebacteria, mycoplasma.

Detection Methods

Next-generation sequencing (NGS), long-read sequencing, PCR denaturing gradient gel analysis (PCR-DGGE), real-time qPCR.

Technical Platforms

Illumina HiSeq/MiSeq, Ion PGM, PacBio SMRT systems, Nanopore systems, PCR-DGGE, Real-time qPCR, clone library etc.

Sample Requirements

    1. DNA sample: ≥ 500 ng, OD260/280 = 1. 8 – 2. 0, concentration ≥ 10 ng/μl.
    2. Ensure that the DNA is not degraded. Avoid repeated freezing and thawing during sample storage and transport.
    3. Please use enough dry ice or ice packs during transportation.
    4. Nucleic acid samples should be stored at -20 °C.


High-throughput sequencing analysis processFigure 1. High-throughput sequencing analysis process.

PCR-DGGE analysis processFigure 2. PCR-DGGE analysis process.

Bioinformatics Analysis

Analysis Content Details
Strain diversity analysis Understand the emergence of drug-resistant strains
Microbial phylogenetics Study of epidemiology and links between genetic diversity and emergence of drug resistance
Comparative pathway analysis Identification of major pathways using databases like BioCyc and KEGG
Comparative genomics Identification and prioritization of essential drug targets using databases like the Database of Essential Genes and the database of Online Gene Essentiality


  1. Qingliang Li and Luhua Lai, rediction of potential drug targets based on simple sequence properties. BMC Bioinformatics, 2007, 8:353
  2. Bruccoleri, R.E. et al. (1998) Concordance analysis of microbial genomes. Nucleic Acids Res. 26, 4482–4486
  3. Vaishali P. Waman, Sundeep Chaitanya Vedithi, Sherine E. Thomas,Bridget P. Bannerman, Asma Munir, Marcin J. Skwark, Sony Malhotra & Tom L. Blundell (2019) Mycobacterial genomics and structural bioinformatics: opportunities and challenges in drug discovery, Emerging Microbes & Infections, 8:1, 109-118

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