Using Bioinformatics for Drug Target Identification from the Genome
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Genomics and proteomics technologies have created a paradigm shift in the drug discovery process, with bioinformatics having a key role in the exploitation of genomic, transcriptomic, and proteomic data to gain insights into the molecular mechanisms that underlie disease and to identify potential drug targets. We discuss the current state of the art for some of the bioinformatic approaches to identifying drug targets, including identifying new members of successful target classes and their functions, predicting disease relevant genes, and constructing gene networks and protein interaction networks. In addition, we introduce drug target discovery using the strategy of systems biology, and discuss some of the data resources for the identification of drug targets.
Although bioinformatics tools and resources can be used to identify putative drug targets, validating targets is still a process that requires an understanding of the role of the gene or protein in the disease process and is heavily dependent on laboratory-based work.