Q-State Biosciences Announces New Peer Reviewed Publication Introducing Its Next Generation Swarm™ Optogenetic Measurement Technology System

July 13, 2022

July 13, 2022, CAMBRIDGE, MASSACHUSETTS--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Q-State Biosciences (“Q-State”), a discovery technology and therapeutics company advancing programs for the treatment of serious central nervous system disorders, announced today the publication of a peer reviewed original research article in Frontiers in Molecular Neuroscience. The paper, titled “Highly Parallelized, Multicolor Optogenetic Recordings of Cellular Activity for Therapeutic Discovery Applications in Ion Channels and Disease-associated Excitable Cells,” highlights Q-State’s proprietary Swarm™ technology system. A pillar of the company’s unique-in-world BRITE™ discovery engine, Swarm™ leverages highly parallelized optogenetic measurements of human and animal model systems to characterize complex cellular function and the performance characteristics of therapeutic candidate molecules. The publication is part of a special research topic collection entitled “Targeting Ion Channels for Drug Discovery: Emerging Challenges for High Throughput Screening Technologies.

The paper details the design and operating capabilities of the new Swarm™ system, including its use applications in neuronal and cardiac model systems to broadly quantify cellular activity. As a demonstration of the system’s high throughput capacity, Q-State scientists established and optimized a series of ‘Spiking HEK’ cell assays to screen voltage-gated sodium channel subtypes such as Nav1.7, which plays a critical role in the sensory transmission of pain and has historically been a challenging target for drug development. The team at Q-state first validated the instrument and assays with known pharmacological tool compounds and then performed a high-throughput screen of 200,000 small molecules to identify Nav1.7 subtype selective blockers to show its utility at scale. As a final demonstration of the versatility of Swarm™, the new system was used to record changes in both voltage and calcium simultaneously in human iPSC-derived cardiomyocytes under paced conditions. This state-of-the-art approach represents significant progress in the ability to screen challenging but biologically important drug targets with the throughput, deep information content, and high temporal resolution necessary to power AI/ML-based computational insights which will ultimately yield urgently needed new therapies to patients.

Q-State technologist Gabriel Borja is lead author of the paper.  

About Q-State Biosciences

Q-State Biosciences is a technology-enabled therapeutics company that applies its proprietary, unique-in-world BRITE™ discovery engine to identify genetically targeted therapeutics for neurodevelopmental, neurodegenerative and other serious disorders of the CNS. By integrating our advanced human neuronal models, custom measurement bioengineering, computational neuroscience, and powerful AI/machine learning, we create the unique, ultra-large neuronal datasets necessary to unlock unique insights into the biological complexity of the brain, its associated disease states, and the creation of transformational medicines. For more information, please visit www.qstatebio.com.


Rachel Walsh
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