Some of the most exciting parts of work in the pharmaceutical industry are the steps leading up to drug discovery. This process can be oversimplified by describing it as a screening campaign involving the systematic testing of many compounds in a test relevant to a given pathology. This naïve description takes place without taking into consideration the numerous key steps that led up to the screening or the steps that might follow. The present chapter describes this whole process as it was conducted in our company during our early drug discovery activities. First, the purpose of the procedures is described and rationalized. Next follows a series of mostly published examples from our own work illustrating the various steps of the process from cloning to biophysics, including expression systems and membrane-bound protein purifications. We believe that what is described here presents an example of how pharmaceutical industry research can organize its platform(s) when the goal is to find and qualify a new preclinical drug candidate using cutting-edge technologies and a lot of hard work.
Part of the book: Drug Discovery