Currently the field of target validation is a rapidly evolving environment, with more companies are offering a wider range of tools and technologies for drug discovery and development. The application of informatics and high-throughput screening is helping to improve profitability and efficiency within Target Validation. The field of target validation is an essential component of any Pharmaceutical company's drug development process and the importance of this area is invaluable. Improving the target validation techniques is a key approach to increasing efficiency and profitability of the drug discovery process.

Target Validation aims to explore the current issues surrounding target validation, looking at recent advances in the field and present technologies available. The conference aims to cover the key issues involved in target validation and offer you an opportunity to improve and compare your techniques. It brings together leaders within the field of target validation and offers a insight into their opinions and strategies.

Conference programme

8:30 Registration & Coffee

9:00 Chairperson's Opening Remarks

Dr Juergen Hammer

Dr Juergen Hammer, Research Leader & Head, Genomics, Hoffmann-La Roche

9:10 Introduction

Dr Mark Lindsay

Dr Mark Lindsay, Project Leader, Global Target Validation Programme, AstraZeneca

  • Aims of target validation
  • Target validation as a primary requirement for drug development
  • Increasing efficacy and profitability during drug discovery
  • Interaction between target validation and target identification
  • Impact of Human Genome Project
  • New target validation technology
    Validating new drug discovery paradigms
  • 9:40 Target Validation

    Dr Langxing Pan

    Dr Langxing Pan, Associate Director, Molecular Biology, Bayer

  • Developments in target validation
  • Where the industry lies now
  • Emerging markets and new opportunities
  • Profile of key players in the field
  • Challenges faced the industry
  • What lies ahead for the industry?
  • 10:20 New Tools For Target Validation

    Dr Casey Case

    Dr Casey Case, Vice President, Research, Sangamo Biosciences

  • Challenges for target validation
  • High-throughput methods
  • Engineered transcription factors
  • Transgenic animals
  • Gene delivery
  • 11:00 Morning Coffee

    11:20 Identification Of Novel Targets Using Subtractive Hybridization Library Screening

    Professor David Wynick

    Professor David Wynick, Chief Scientific Officer, NeuroTargets

  • We generate and fully sequence large numbers of subtractive libraries from different pain and nerve injury models
  • Using custom arrays to perform transcriptional profiling
  • Using transgenic and viral approaches target validation is then performed
  • 12:00 Evaluation Of Target Validation Strategies

    Dr Martin Perry

    Dr Martin Perry, Head ,NCE Biology, Celltech

  • Target validation- the challenge
  • From gene to (drug) target
  • The power of genetic validation
  • Advances in antibody technology helps in the validation of extracellular targets
  • HTS and target validation
  • 12:40 Lunch

    13:40 Industrial-scale, In Organismo™ Target Validation

    Dr Alexander Crawford

    Dr Alexander Crawford, President, Mermaid Pharmaceuticals

  • Use of in organismo™ bioassays and morpholino antisense technology
  • Genome-wide gene functionation screen
  • New, functionally validated targets in vascular biology, hematopoiesis, and regenerative medicine
  • New in organismo™ disease models for validation of targets and compounds
  • Discovery and development of small molecules, antibodies, and proteins
  • 14:20 COPAS Flow Sorting of Small Animal Model Organisms & Beads: Seamless integration of target validation, assay development and HTS.

    Johan Geysen

    Johan Geysen, Vice President & Director, European Scientific Operations, Union Biometrica

  • Automated genetic/enhancer/suppressor screens
  • Bulk animal sorting for biochemical/microarray experiments
  • Dispensing of sorted organisms in multi-well plates for drug screening
  • Automated re-sampling of 'in well' animal populations
  • Statistical multi-parametric analysis of drug effects
  • 15:00 Identifying And Validating Drug Targets

    Dr Leodevico Ilag

    Dr Leodevico Ilag, Chief Scientific Officer,, Xerion

  • Nearly all validated drug target are proteins
  • Proteins are predominant executors of biological function and can have multiple functions (moonlighting proteins)
  • Validation at the protein level vs. validation at the RNA or DNA levels
  • Protein drug target validation using chromophore-assisted laser inactivation (XCALIbur)
  • Target-driven or hypothesis-driven protein target validation
  • Disease-directed protein target validation
  • 15:40 Afternoon Tea

    16:00 Models For Target Validation

    Dr Michael Saunders

    Dr Michael Saunders, Head, Metabolic Diseases, Devgen

  • C. elegans models of human diseases
  • High-throughput target validation in vivo
  • Functional validation of protein interactions
  • Exploration of pathways associated with validated targets
  • 16:40 Animal Models In Target Validation

    Dr Lori Friedman

    Dr Lori Friedman, Program Leader, Oncology, Exelixis

  • Benefits of using an animal model for target validation
  • Potential pitfalls
  • Applying knowledge of animal models to human disease
  • Alternative models: how do they compare?
  • A look to the future
  • 17:20 Chairman’s Closing Remarks and Close of Day One

    8:30 Re-registration & Coffee

    9:00 Chairperson's Opening Remarks

    Professor David Wynick

    Professor David Wynick, Chief Scientific Officer, NeuroTargets

    9:10 Application of process biology in target validation

    Dr Juergen Hammer

    Dr Juergen Hammer, Research Leader & Head, Genomics, Hoffmann-La Roche

  • ‘Process biology’ and the drug discovery process
  • Genomics and bioinformatics-based target ID process
  • High-throughput in vitro validation process
  • Tissue index: integration of clinical and microarray data
  • The vaccinome approach
  • 9:40 Functional Genomics Applications Of Antisense

    Dr Nicholas Dean

    Dr Nicholas Dean, Vice President, Functional Genomics, ISIS Pharmaceuticals

  • Recent developments in antisense technology
  • High-through put target validation in animal models
  • Rapid gene function analysis
  • 10:20 Chemical Genomics

    Dr Huw Nash

    Dr Huw Nash, Vice President, External Collaborations, NeoGenesis

  • Opportunities and challenges for drug discovery in the post-genomic era
  • Chemical genomics: a strategy for post-genomic drug discovery
  • The NeoGenesis chemical genomics technology platform
  • Selected Neogenesis project synopses
  • NeoGenesis chemical genomics programs
  • 11:00 Morning Coffee

    11:20 Target Validation Using HSV Vector-Based Gene Delivery

    Dr Robert Coffin

    Dr Robert Coffin, Chief Scientific Officer, Biovex

  • HSV biology
  • Vector technology overview
  • Gene delivery/target validation applications in neurons
  • Gene delivery/target validation in other cell types
  • 12:00 Intrabodies - A Valuable Tool For Target Validation

    Kirsten Mundt Ph.D.

    Kirsten Mundt Ph.D., Business Development, ESBATechAG

    12:40 Lunch

    13:40 Validating Cancer Targets

    Dr Bruce Roberts

    Dr Bruce Roberts, Vice President, Applied Genomics, Genzyme

  • Genomics derived anti-cancer drug developments
  • Use of patient-derived anti-cancer drug developments
  • Use of biological assays to aid genomic mining
  • Determination of target prevalence
  • Assessment of target-based therapeutics
  • 14:20 Strategies Of Target Validation

    Dr Giora Feuerstein

    Dr Giora Feuerstein, Executive Director, Cardiovascular Biology, Bristol-Myers Squibb

  • The development of new therapeutic agents for heart failure requires extremely high hurdles as several classes of therapeutics are already available
  • Selection of new targets for treatment of heart failure will require clear validation of substantial additional benefits over current combination therapy
  • The use of genomics, functional genomics, proteomics and related technologies are critical in identification of qualified new targets for heart failure
  • Selection of clinically relevant ‘end-points’ will be critical in seamless translational medicine in heart failure
  • 15:00 Validating Mitotic Targets

    Dr Simon Green

    Dr Simon Green, Program Manager, Polgen, Cyclacel

  • Mitosis and cancer chemotherapeutics
  • High-throughput target identification in model organisms
  • Phenotypic correlation between drosphilia cells and human cells
  • Rapid confirmation of compound mode-of-action
  • Pursuit of multiple pathways as a risk reduction strategy in drug discovery
  • 15:40 Afternoon Tea

    16:00 Prioritising The Proteome

    Mr Kevin Bottomley

    Mr Kevin Bottomley, Director, Collaborations, Inpharmatica

  • Focussing on the application of protein 3-D structural data to the identification of distantly related homologs of pharmaceutically important gene families
  • Combined bioinformatics and chemoinformatics platform that significantly improves the yield and quality of functional annotation
  • Correlating annotation with an estimation of druggability
  • Specific examples of the application of this technology to the target discovery process
  • 16:40 Target and compound validation using a functional proteomics approach

    Dr Jasbinder Sanghera

    Dr Jasbinder Sanghera, Chief Scientific Officer, Kinetek

  • Impact of protein phosphorylation on cell function
  • Examining function of protein kinases by tracking protein phosphorylation
  • Requirement for enrichment strategies
  • Antibody profiling and mass spectrometry applications
  • Phosphoprotein fingerprinting as a tool for compound specificity determination
  • Monitoring function of targets in signalling pathways
  • 17:20 Chairman's Closing Remarks and Close of Conference


    The Hatton, at etc. venues

    51/53 Hatton Garden
    London EC1N 8HN
    United Kingdom

    The Hatton, at etc. venues



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    CPD stands for Continuing Professional Development’. It is essentially a philosophy, which maintains that in order to be effective, learning should be organised and structured. The most common definition is:

    ‘A commitment to structured skills and knowledge enhancement for Personal or Professional competence’

    CPD is a common requirement of individual membership with professional bodies and Institutes. Increasingly, employers also expect their staff to undertake regular CPD activities.

    Undertaken over a period of time, CPD ensures that educational qualifications do not become obsolete, and allows for best practice and professional standards to be upheld.

    CPD can be undertaken through a variety of learning activities including instructor led training courses, seminars and conferences, e:learning modules or structured reading.


    There are approximately 470 institutes in the UK across all industry sectors, with a collective membership of circa 4 million professionals, and they all expect their members to undertake CPD.

    For some institutes undertaking CPD is mandatory e.g. accountancy and law, and linked to a licence to practice, for others it’s obligatory. By ensuring that their members undertake CPD, the professional bodies seek to ensure that professional standards, legislative awareness and ethical practices are maintained.

    CPD Schemes often run over the period of a year and the institutes generally provide online tools for their members to record and reflect on their CPD activities.


    Professional bodies and Institutes CPD schemes are either structured as ‘Input’ or ‘Output’ based.

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    ‘Output’ based schemes are learner centred. They require individuals to set learning goals that align to professional competencies, or personal development objectives. These schemes also list different ways to achieve the learning goals e.g. training courses, seminars or e:learning, which enables an individual to complete their CPD through their preferred mode of learning.

    The majority of Input and Output based schemes actively encourage individuals to seek appropriate CPD activities independently.

    As a formal provider of CPD certified activities, SMI Group can provide an indication of the learning benefit gained and the typical completion. However, it is ultimately the responsibility of the delegate to evaluate their learning, and record it correctly in line with their professional body’s or employers requirements.


    Increasingly, international and emerging markets are ‘professionalising’ their workforces and looking to the UK to benchmark educational standards. The undertaking of CPD is now increasingly expected of any individual employed within today’s global marketplace.

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    We can provide a certificate for all our accredited events. To request a CPD certificate for a conference , workshop, master classes you have attended please email events@smi-online.co.uk

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