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CDD, St. Jude Alliance Aims to Quicken Rx Development for Resistant Malaria

NEW YORK (GenomeWeb News) — Collaborative Drug Discovery and St. Jude Children's Research Hospital have penned an alliance to speed the development of drugs to treat resistant strains of malaria.
The collaboration is designed to help scientists quickly screen millions of chemicals, based on their structure and their chemical and biological properties, to find those that are most likely to make effective anti-malaria drugs.
It combines the drug-discovery expertise of the St. Jude Department of Chemical Biology and Therapeutics with CDD’s malaria drug data and informatics technology, which “will probably help us reduce the number of potential molecules we'll need to analyze from tens of millions down to hundreds of thousands," Kip Guy, chair of the St. Jude Department of Chemical Biology and Therapeutics, said in a statement.
"Our own screening capability will significantly reduce that to a much smaller number of promising compounds,” he said. “This will be a widely used database. We are already making the data freely available through CDD so that other researchers can use different analytical strategies to identify potential new anti-malarial drugs."
The malaria project is the “first of several” that CDD plans as it aims to “help the research community discover drugs for orphan infectious diseases-disorders.” Future CDD projects are planned in other more commercial areas, such as cancer research and selected gene families, the company said.

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