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A cellular assay often provide a wealth of information and are valuable tools in drug discovery to understand complex interplay of networks and pathways. It is crucial to create an effective and tailored in vitro cell-based assay platform to best mimic disease states for improved translational success. Cellular assays can be functional or phenotypic and for evaluation of potential drug modulators. It has been extensively explored for target engagement studies such as nanoBRET and in dissecting intracellular signalling pathways for membrane-bound targets such as GPCRs and ion-channels. We have developed multiple cellular models to study target stability, subcellular localization and protein trafficking, transcriptional readouts, pathway activation, cell cycle analysis, cell proliferation and differentiation, MOA and other disease specific model systems precisely adapted to the specific target of interest.

There are a range of various types of cellular assays that we can offer, however not limited to the list below –

  • Proliferation Assays: Measure cell growth and division rates, often used in cancer research
  • Cytotoxicity Assays: Assess the toxicity of compounds on cell viability
  • Apoptosis Assays: Evaluate programmed cell death and identify factors that induce or inhibit apoptosis
  • Viability Assays: Determine the number of viable cells to assess their overall health
  • Migration and Invasion Assays: Study cell movement, tissue invasion and metastasis in cancer research
  • Reporter Gene Assays: Measure gene expression by monitoring the activity of reporter genes (e.g., luciferase) in response to specific stimuli
  • Cell-Adhesion/Cell-Matrix interaction Assays: Examine the ability of cells to adhere to substrates or extracellular matrix critical in cancer metastasis and immunology and for tissue repair
  • Cell Cycle Analysis: Profile mitotic pathways with whole-cell propidium iodide (PI) staining and antibodies directed towards specific proteins or surface markers to concurrently analyse cellular characteristics within distinct cell populations G0/G1, S, and G2/M. To quantitatively determine phase distribution along with characteristics like ploidy, apoptosis, senescence, cell type etc.
  • Population analysis and immune cell killing: Phenotyping whole blood-derived PBMCs and quantify expression of surface receptors and intracellular proteins. Develop Co-culture systems (e.g., PBMCs, T cells, NK cells) for their cytotoxic potential against cancer cell lines and to quantify percentage of cell death or necroptosis
  • Metabolic Assays: Evaluate cellular metabolism and metabolic pathways, including glycolysis and oxidative phosphorylation
  • Cell Differentiation Assays: Measure the differentiation of stem cells into specialized cell types in regenerative medicine and developmental biology
  • High-Content Imaging and Microscopy: High resolution, quantitative, real-time analysis and characterization of lead molecules in protein trafficking, sub-cellular localization, receptor internalization and endocytosis; mitotic progression and cytokinesis; evaluating DNA Damage Response (DDR) pathways and recruitment to sites of repair
  • Cell Signalling: Investigate intracellular pathways by monitoring the activation of specific signalling proteins such as GPCRs based on agonist or antagonist stimulation. Ligand binding triggers a signalling cascade that can lead to various changes in cellular responses such as cAMP, inositol phosphate, calcium mobilization and/or beta-arrestin recruitment. Measuring modulators of Ion channels utilizing ion-sensitive or voltage sensitive fluorescent dyes or changes in membrane potential
  • Cellular thermal shift assays (CETSA): Cell-based target engagement study which upon heating, proteins unfold and aggregate at a given temperature and the aggregation can be altered by a small molecule binding to the protein, causing a thermal shift in Tagg/Tm
  • Other classical assays include immuno-precipitation and western blotting to study protein-protein interactions and in understanding post translation modifications e.g. phosphorylation, ubiquitination.  At o2h discovery, we also perform synthetic lethality and drug sensitivity screens for anti- cancer therapeutics.

To know more about our biology services offering or to request our brochure, please reach out to us at discovery@o2h.com.

our team

prashant shah

Prashant Shah

CEO - o2h discovery and Co-Founder - o2h group

Prashant's Biography

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Prashant Shah

CEO - o2h discovery and Co-Founder - o2h group

Prashant is a serial entrepreneur in life sciences and tech in which one of those companies was acquired by a public company. He is currently active in seed investing (a portfolio of ~50 companies), product/IP development, services, and building lab/office infrastructure. The early career was with the Strategy group at Accenture. He has a BEng, an MSc, in which he worked on the Human Genome Program at the Sanger Centre, and an MPhil in Management from the Judge Institute. Prashant is also a General Partner in the o2h SEIS/EIS Human Health Funds.


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Sunil

Sunil Shah

CEO - o2h Ventures and Co-Founder - o2h group

Sunil's Biography

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Sunil Shah

CEO - o2h Ventures and Co-Founder - o2h group

A serial entrepreneur having begun a career in the Life Sciences team at PA Consulting group followed by co-founding two companies in the information technology and life sciences sector. The second of these companies, Oxygen Healthcare Ltd was acquired by Piramal Enterprises Ltd (BSE: PEL). Sunil co-founded o2h ventures which involves discovery services / collaborations, seeding drug discovery, academic in-licensing and biotechnology incubation. Sunil has a degree in Biochemistry and an MBA from Cambridge University


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Andy Morley

Andy Morley

Chief Scientific Officer

Andy's Biography

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Andy Morley

Chief Scientific Officer

Andy is a highly experienced and accomplished Medicinal Chemist with over 25 years of experience in major pharmaceutical companies such as Sanofi-Aventis and AstraZeneca. He has extensive experience across all phases of drug discovery and has played a key role in the development of five candidates that have reached clinical trials. Andy is a prolific author and inventor, with over 55 publications and patents to his name. Since 2013, he has been working full-time with o2h Limited, where he leads the scientific evaluation of investment opportunities and provides scientific support. He has also served as CSO for two early-stage collaborations within the o2h Ventures portfolio, demonstrating his ability to successfully guide drug discovery projects from concept to clinical development.


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David Davies - o2h

David Davies

Head of Medicinal Chemistry

David's Biography

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David Davies

Head of Medicinal Chemistry

David Davies has 25 years of experience in medicinal chemistry within the pharmaceutical industry with a focus on the antibacterial area (clavulanates, penicillinates, pseudomonates and bacterial topoisomerase inhibitors). He previously worked at GSK and currently holds a part-time academic position at University College London (UCL). He served as the Head of Medicinal Chemistry at Antabio for nearly a decade, specialising in antibacterial research, and has extensive experience managing chemistry projects in multiple countries including France, UK, India and China. He is the inventor of 40 patents and has authored 37 publications.


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o2h group launched revolutionary project management app for drug discovery

o2h group launched revolutionary project management app for drug discovery. The app’s full suite of project management tools is available exclusively to live project collaborators and a lighter version is open for researchers looking for a quote for the synthesis of small molecules.

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