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Dinner Short Courses*

Sunday, November 8 | 6:00-9:00 PM

(SC1) Introduction to High-Content Phenotypic Screening

The ever-increasing demand for improved productivity in research through the generation of robust analysis outputs has driven both the development and deployment of automated high-content analysis (HCA) and phenotypic cell-based approaches to drug discovery. In contrast to the more traditional cellular analysis and target-based approaches, here the researcher is able to evaluate the efficacy of potential therapeutics by monitoring the physiological state of cells through the simultaneous analysis of multiple cellular parameters in the context of an intact biological system. This course will cover the key features of HCS/A technologies and the best approaches to using these technologies for phenotypic cell-based screening.

Instructor: Anthony M. Davies, Ph.D., Center Director, Translational Cell Imaging Queensland (TCIQ), Institute of Health Biomedical Innovation, Queensland University of Technology

Who should attend?

This course has been developed to introduce and facilitate scientists who are either moving into the field or who are interested in further developing new phenotypic discovery applications and tools for use with these technologies.

Course Structure

(i) An introduction to HCA technologies
(ii) Advanced cell-based models for use with HCA
(iii) Worked examples of the phenotypic screening approach and future directions
(iv) Group discussion and Q&A

Learning Outcomes

  • Develop a familiarity of the basics of HCS/A technologies
  • Gain an understanding of the capabilities of this technology
  • Learn of the latest developments in cell-based models for use in this field
  • Get a better understanding of the key principles of assay design and development for phenotypic screening


Monday, November 9 | 7:00-9:00 PM

(SC2) Screening Strategies for Cancer Immunotherapy

Phenotypic Screening for Novel Cancer Immunotherapy Targets

Alan Sandercock, Ph.D., Scientist II, Antibody Discovery and Protein Engineering, MedImmune

Integrating Proteomics and Genomics at the Single Cell Level for I/O Drug Discovery

Cokey Nguyen, Ph.D., Vice President, R&D, Enumeral

We have a single cell technology platform where we capture what each cell is secreting, e.g., cytokines or antigen-specific antibodies; in this way we have a functional picture of what the cells are doing. We then isolate the cells, to either grow them in culture or for genomics. Then we can isolate the B cell receptor and T cell receptor, or perform single cell next-gen sequencing.

A Patient-Derived 3D Co-Culture System for Efficacy Testing of Immunotherapeutic Approaches in Cancer

Christian Schmees, Ph.D., Head, Tumor Biology, NMI Natural and Medical Sciences Institute at the University of Tübingen

At the NMI we have developed a patient-derived model system to allow for pre-selection of cancer immunotherapeutic products with the highest potential for further preclinical and clinical evaluation. Our co-culture platform comprises primary human 3D tumor spheroids and autologous antigen-specific T lymphocytes. The tumor targeting efficacy of T cell populations is assessed using fluorescence-based analysis of T cell infiltration and quantification of the degree of cytotoxicity induced in the spheroid.


Tuesday, November 10 | 6:00-9:00 PM

(SC3) Expert ThinkTank: How to Meet the Need for Physiologically Relevant Assays

It used to be adequate to build target-specific and robust assays to drive lead optimization. These assays were relatively inexpensive and reliable and could be counted on to provide chemists with usable results. However, with time, it has become apparent that it is not enough to be robust and target specific. To build therapies for patients, we need to have assays that are more predictive of patient outcome. The current buzz words are “physiologically relevant assays.” This session will explore the need for physiologically relevant assays and explore the ways that we can achieve this endpoint.

Moderator: Lisa Minor, Ph.D., President, In Vitro Strategies, LLC


  • Anthony M. Davies, Ph.D., Center Director, Translational Cell Imaging Queensland (TCIQ), Institute of Health Biomedical Innovation, Queensland University of Technology
  • Shane Horman, Ph.D., Research Investigator, Genomics Institute of the Novartis Research Foundation
  • Jesse Lugus, Ph.D., Research Investigator, Developmental & Molecular Pathways, Novartis Institutes for BioMedical Research
  • David Nolte, Ph.D., Professor, Physics, Purdue University; President, Animated Dynamics, Inc.
  • Serena Silver, Ph.D., Senior Investigator & Group Leader, Molecular Pharmacology, Novartis
  • Lena Smirnova, Ph.D., Research Associate, Johns Hopkins Center for Alternatives to Animal Testing, Johns Hopkins University Bloomberg School of Public Health
  • Wei Sun, Ph.D., Scientist, Therapeutics for Rare and Neglected Diseases (TRND), National Center for Advancing Translational Sciences (NCATS)
  • Fabien Vincent, Ph.D., Associate Research Fellow, Hit Discovery and Lead Profiling, Pfizer


*Separate registration required