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Genedata Announces New Solution for Efficient Analysis of High-Throughput Automated Patch Clamp Experiments

AstraZeneca and Genedata collaborate to extend the Genedata Screener platform, creating the industry’s first high-throughput APC solution for next generation ion channel safety screening

June 6, 2017
Basel, Switzerland

Genedata, a leading provider of advanced software solutions for R&D, today announced the general availability of a new solution for the automated analysis of Automated Patch Clamp (APC) data. The innovative software package has been developed in close collaboration with AstraZeneca and is available as part of Genedata Screener for Ion Channel Screening. New functionality added to the existing Screener APC package provides further in-depth characterization of compound effects on key ion channels, which are important for regulating cardiac action potential. AstraZeneca scientists will discuss the new analysis solution in a webinar - “A New Analysis Capability to Improve Assessment of Cardiac Liability in High Throughput Electrophysiology” (June 7, 2017).

Early indications of potential safety issues early in the R&D process minimize the risk of product liabilities and patient health issues. Modern APC technology provides scalable functional measurements of ion channels and, if analyzed properly, quickly yields qualitative data on large numbers of compounds. “We collaborated with Genedata to develop an integrated, high-throughput APC analysis solution. This is key to characterizing and ranking compounds alongside other key data as part of the drug discovery process,” noted Matt Bridgland-Taylor, associate principal scientist at AstraZeneca’s Innovative Medicines & Early Discovery Biotech Unit.

The high-throughput APC assays developed by AstraZeneca and supported by Genedata Screener are fundamental in eliminating key liabilities and designing strong leads in the drug discovery process. The solution increases specificity and throughput, which ultimately saves time, reduces risk, and improves R&D productivity.

Full APC Data Analysis with Genedata Screener
AstraZeneca uses the Nanion SyncroPatch 384PE system to obtain physiological ion channel data. Nanion is a partner in the Genedata Ready-to-Run program and closely works with Genedata to serve joint customers with a smooth integration of its hardware with Genedata Screener and optimized data analysis workflows for APC.  

To optimize analysis of the Nanion SyncroPatch 384PE instrument’s high volume of complex current traces, new methods for automated data QC and quantifying the onset of effect to identify slow onset compounds were added to Genedata Screener. The resulting solution reads raw binary data directly from the instrument into Genedata Screener and enables:

  • Complete processing from raw data (sweeps) to cumulated compound results.
  • Systematic and early testing of compounds key cardiac channels (e.g. hERG potassium channel) in cumulative curve format.
  • Kinetic determination of the onset of effect as a parameter and the automatic identification of slow onset blockers previously undetected.
  • Automated analysis, annotation, and reporting of APC results on the same software platform used for all other screens at AstraZeneca.

Genedata Screener for Ion Channel Screening is a generic solution that works with a broad range of APC instruments. It incorporates cutting-edge capabilities such as: analysis of titration data in multiple scenarios; sweep normalization for cumulative curves; filtering and masking; current/voltage trace visualization; and robust quality metrics.

“The new developments have enhanced our ability to analyze and interrogate complex datasets for hERG and other key ion channels involved in the regulation of cardiac action potential, and substantially increases our throughput,” said Ana Teixeira, informatics analyst with AstraZeneca R&D who was responsible for the co-development project.  

“Our collaboration with AstraZeneca exemplifies our efforts to deliver solutions that improve research productivity and efficiency,” noted Dr. Othmar Pfannes, CEO of Genedata. “With this latest addition to Genedata Screener, we enable our customers to systematically run affordable safety screens early in the lead discovery stage. The solution uses APC instruments to their full potential, and thus increases productivity and creates new efficiencies for pharmaceutical R&D.”

Editorial Note: AstraZeneca Webinar
Title: A New Analysis Capability to Improve Assessment of Cardiac Liability in High Throughput Electrophysiology
Date: June 7, 2017
Time: 9:00 am EDT

About Genedata

Genedata transforms data into intelligence with innovative software solutions that incorporate extensive biopharma R&D domain knowledge. Multinational biopharmaceutical organizations and cutting-edge biotechs around the globe rely on Genedata to digitalize and automate data-rich and complex R&D processes. From early discovery all the way to the clinic, Genedata solutions help maximize the ROI in R&D expenditure. Founded in 1997, Genedata is headquartered in Basel, Switzerland with additional offices in Boston, London, Munich, San Francisco, Singapore, and Tokyo.
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Allison Kurz
Public Relations


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The new developments have enhanced our ability to analyze and interrogate complex datasets for hERG and other key ion channels involved in the regulation of cardiac action potential, and substantially increases our throughput

Ana Teixeira
Informatics Analyst