Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Conference Report: Discovery on Target

For the past couple of days representatives from BMG LABTECH have been in attendance at Discovery on Target in Boston, MA, USA. Here, we have learned more about epigenetics, which continues to grow in importance as the scientific community understands more about how epigenetics occurs and is regulated. Central to epigenetics is the post-translational modification of histones which plays a role in determining what genes will be transcribed into RNA and eventually translated into protein.
Cartoon diagram of an epigenetic reader binding to an
acetylated lysine in a histone tail

The proteins that are involved in epigenetics based on histone modification are broadly categorized into three groups. Writers and erasers which add and remove the post-translational modifications as well as readers which detect the modification and are often part of a multi-protein complex which interpret the modification and lead to a change in gene expression. These readers have been studied more avidly in recent years and many presentations and discussions at this conference have indicated the importance of readers in normal function. Furthermore, alterations of readers are associated with several disease states and they have emerged as new druggable targets.

In the simplest of terms the interaction between a modified histone tail and an epigenetic reader is a protein-protein interaction. As such it is not surprising that approaches that have been previously successful in elucidating protein-protein interactions have been applied to this field. This includes, but is not limited to fluorescence polarization and AlphaScreen. As BMG microplate readers, such as the PHERAstar FS and the new CLARIOstar, have been shown to perform these types of analyses well, they should be considered excellent tools for investigating the function of epigenetic readers.

One talk of particular note was by Danette Daniels, PhD, from Promega. Dr. Daniels described the combination of NanoLuc labeling of a bromodomain protein (an epigenetic reader) and fluorescent labeling of histone. In this way they can tell when the epigenetic reader is bound to histone in live cells through the use of BRET. This data was also recently shared in a BMG hosted webinar which showed that the new CLARIOstar is the only microplate reader with a monochromator that was sensitive enough to detect the NanoLuc BRET signal.

We are very glad that we have had the opportunity to attend Discovery on Target and meet with so many great scientists. We look forward to the remainder of the conference and hope that BMG can help you in your drug discovery program!

Monday, September 23, 2013

BMG LABTECH Events this week

The CLARIOstar from BMG LABTECH. Ask the
representatives from BMG about this revolutionary
microplate reader at any of the conferences
at which we are in attendance.

BMG LABTECH will be busy attending conferences in Europe and the United States this week! To find out more about the conferences that we will be attending please visit the Events Page on our website.

We will be at MIPTEC 2013 in Basel, Switzerland. If you are there for the conference on September 24-26 please stop by booth number A22 and say hello and we can see how we can help you with your Drug Discovery.

Also on September 24-26 BMG LABTECH will be at Discovery on Target 2013 in Boston, MA, USA. We will be at booth 33 and are looking forward to hearing about the approaches you use to discover Novel Drug Targets!

Later in the week, September 25-29, BMG LABTECH representatives will be in attendance at GFB (Le Groupe Français de Bioénergétique) Congress in Carry-le-Rouet, France.

We hope to see you!

Friday, September 13, 2013

Recent application notes on

In the past week three new application notes have been posted on the BMG LABTECH website.

The first, AN 240, describes how a BMG LABTECH customer used his PHERAstar to design a FRET-based assay to create a screen for inhibitors of a bacterial protein. The bacterial protein is involved in producing the bacterial cell wall and is therefore essential for many bacteria to survive. Therefore inhibitors of this protein could represent novel antibacterial drugs.

Ball-and-stick model of the C55-isoprenyl pyrophosphate molecule (also known as undecaprenyl pyrophosphate), an essential molecule in the construction of some bacterial cell walls.
The other two application notes, AN 244 and AN 245 describe the use of the CLARIOstar to perfrom the Transcreener® ADP2 assays from BellBrook Labs. The assays employ either fluorescence polarization or fluorescence intensity detection to monitor ADP production. These assays can be used to quantify enzyme activity when the reaction creates ADP as by-product thus allowing you to monitor enzymes such as kinases or ATPases. We are proud to say that the CLARIOstar performance was excellent and that it attained certification to perform either assay.

For more information on these and other applications visit the BMG LABTECH website and visit our Applications Center.

Tuesday, September 10, 2013

Can worms help in the fight against auto-immune diseases?

According to a recently published article in Nature Reviews Immunology entitled: 'Type 2 immunity and wound healing: evolutionary refinement of adaptive immunity by helminths' there is growing support for the use of controlled exposure to the parasitic worms, or helminths, as a means to train a compromised immune system. It is believed that the presence of these worms throughout human evolution has led to an immune response called type 2 immunity. This includes activation of regulatory pathways that help control inflammation which can contribute to autoimmune diseases like diabetes. Since individuals in developing countries are still exposed to these worms this may explain the low prevalence of auto-immune diseases in these countries.

Relative sizes of Helminth eggs
Now, the key is to be able to harness the type 2 immune response and reap the benefits it has for auto-immune diseases. Initial studies in mice have shown that introduction of live worms or worm byproducts into the animals for 2 weeks led to cytokine production and long term protection from Type 1 diabetes. If similar results can be achieved in humans we will no longer have to endure the apparent trade off between cleanliness and auto-immune diseases.

Some information for the blog post was obtained from ScienceDaily

Friday, September 6, 2013

Wednesday's Webinar Available on Demand at DDD

On Wednesday, September 4th BMG LABTECH presented a Drug Discovery & Development webinar in cooperation with Promega. The webinar entitled: ‘Enhanced Protein-Protein Interactions in Living Cells Using the NanoBRETTM Assay and CLARIOstar®’ describes the latest advances made by Promega and BMG LABTECH.

Promega’s new NanoBRETTM technology is the latest advance in BRET technology and provides users with improved ability to perform various protein-protein interaction studies in living cells. Promega presents data in this webinar that shows that the CLARIOstar ® is an outstanding microplate reader to detect this assay.

The CLARIOstar® is the new microplate reader from BMG LABTECH which features an advanced monochromator that employs linear variable filter technology. The result is filter-like performance with a monochromator that allows you to select both wavelength (320 to 850 nm) and band pass (8 to 100 nm)!

Thursday, September 5, 2013

The first fluorescence polarization activity-based protein profiling assay compatible with membrane proteins

Rhomboids are a family of intramembrane proteases which are found in all kingdoms of life and have been found to play a role in bacterial survival and host cell infection by parasites. They are functionally diverse so developing an assay to screen for inhibitors of rhomboids would be hindered if it relied on altering a substrate. To alleviate this problem a German group recently published: 'A New Class of Rhomboid Protease Inhibitors Discovered by Activity-Based Fluorescence Polarization' in PLoS One. In this paper they describe the use of fluorescence activity based-probes (ABPs). ABPs are small molecules that covalently and selectively bind to the active form of an enzyme. When a fluorescent dye is added to the ABP the binding of the ABP can be monitored using fluorescence polarization.

To assist in the design and implementation of this screening platform these scientists selected the POLARstar Omega from BMG LABTECH. Once they found the appropriate conditions that allowed them to solubilize their protein of interest without affecting their fluorescence polarization results they were able to obtain Z' values of over 0.9, indicative of an outstanding screening platform! Based on their results they have identified a new class of inhibitor which they hope will be the basis for additional compounds of therapeutic relevance.

Monday, September 2, 2013

Webinar Wednesday - Protein-Protein Interactions Measured with NanoLuc BRET in Living Cells Using CLARIOstar

Did you miss it? 

If you missed last week's webinar entitled: Enhanced Protein-Protein Interactions in Living Cells Using the NanoBRET™ Assay from Promega and the CLARIOstar's LVF Monochromator, don't worry here is your second chance!

Taking place this Wednesday September 4th, 2013 at 11:00 AM EDT is the rescheduled webinar. 

Learn about the new NanoBRET assay technology from Promega and how it can be used to study protein-protein interactions. Also, learn about the new CLARIOstar microplate reader from BMG LABTECH that has a next generation LVF Monochromator with adjustable bandwidths up to 100 nm.

Never worry about filters again for assays like NanoBRET. 

Preregister at:

Please join us!

Learn more about the CLARIOstar at BMG LABTECH's website