Solid-phase assays for small molecule screening using sol-gel entrapped proteinsThis paper is one of a selection of papers published in this Special Issue, entitled CSBMCB — Systems and Chemical Biology, and has undergone the Journal's usual peer review process.
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With compound libraries exceeding one million compounds, the ability to quickly and effectively screen these compounds against relevant pharmaceutical targets has become crucial. Solid-phase assays present several advantages over solution-based methods. For example, a higher degree of miniaturization can be achieved, functional- and affinity-based studies are possible, and a variety of detection methods can be used. Unfortunately, most protein immobilization methods are either too harsh or require recombinant proteins and thus are not amenable to delicate proteins such as kinases and membrane-bound receptors. Sol-gel encapsulation of proteins in an inorganic silica matrix has emerged as a novel solid-phase assay platform. In this minireview, we discuss the development of sol-gel derived protein microarrays and sol-gel based monolithic bioaffinity columns for the high-throughput screening of small molecule libraries and mixtures.
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