Sanford-Burnham News Archive

Burnham Institute for Medical Research and Magellan BioScience Group, Inc., Announce Drug Discovery Collaboration

ORLANDO, Fla. , July 6, 2009

Magellan BioScience Group, Inc. (Magellan), a pioneer in innovative drug development from marine sources, and investigators at the Burnham Institute for Medical Research at Lake Nona (Burnham) announced today that they will begin a multidisciplinary drug discovery collaboration to identify novel marine microbial compounds that have potential as tools for biological research and ultimately the discovery of new medicines.

This collaboration will bring together Magellan’s unique collection of marine-derived microorganisms and their natural product chemistry expertise with Burnham’s ultra-high throughput small molecule screening technologies that were recently established at the Lake Nona, Florida campus. The Burnham-Magellan team will utilize Burnham’s state-of-the-art robotic screening system to run bioassays and characterize lead candidates from the collection. The Burnham team of medicinal chemists will then optimize novel compounds to afford potential biological probes and preclinical drug candidates. The groups’ combined expertise in sophisticated chemistry approaches and access to advanced screening technologies will accelerate early discovery and drug development efforts.

“We are excited to initiate this discovery collaboration with Burnham,” said Dr. Todd R. Daviau, CEO of Magellan. “Burnham’s scientific and technological approach coupled with their highly-qualified and industry-experienced research teams constitutes a significant opportunity for the discovery and development of new pharmaceutical candidates.”

Burnham’s ultra-high throughput screening resource resides within the Conrad Prebys Center for Chemical Genomics and is one of four NIH sponsored comprehensive screening and probe development centers in the United States. The fully-integrated automated system combining robotic screening with high-content image analysis, hit-to-probe chemistry, exploratory pharmacology expertise and informatics, provides a technology platform that is virtually unprecedented in the not-for-profit research world.

“The Burnham-Magellan collaboration will involve some of the first assays to be processed through our new small molecule screening center at Lake Nona. This is a powerful partnership that will advance both science and regional development and is representative of the collaborations that were envisioned by Burnham as we established an east coast campus in Florida,” said Dr. Gregory Roth, associate professor and director of medicinal chemistry and pharmacology at Burnham.

About Sanford-Burnham Medical Research Institute

Sanford-Burnham Medical Research Institute is dedicated to discovering the fundamental molecular causes of disease and devising the innovative therapies of tomorrow. Sanford-Burnham takes a collaborative approach to medical research with major programs in cancer, neurodegeneration and stem cells, diabetes, and infectious, inflammatory, and childhood diseases. The Institute is recognized for its National Cancer Institute-designated Cancer Center and expertise in drug discovery technologies. Sanford-Burnham is a nonprofit, independent institute that employs more than 1,000 scientists and staff in San Diego (La Jolla), Calif., and Orlando (Lake Nona), Fla. For more information, visit us at

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