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Summer Research Fellowship Programme of India's Science Academies

IN-SILICO STUDIES ON CANCER TARGETS

Ms Pornima Rajkarne

Department of Biotechnology, Shri Shivaji Science College, Congress Nagar, Nagpur, Maharashtra-440012

Dr. Amit Das

Protein Crystallography, Radiation Biology and Health Sciences Division, Bhabha Atomic Research Centre, Trombay, Mumbai-400085

Abstract

Cancer, a group of diseases in which abnormal cells divide unconditionally, is fatal, thus its treatment remains an area of great concern. Out of a large number of therapies used against cancer, chemotherapy is the most sought-after due to its target specificity. But the course of drug discovery is time-consuming. Hence, to provide a variety of drugs against various types of cancer, traditional techniques of drug discovery are being replaced with modern ones. Virtual screening is one such new technique, which allows us to test drug-like compounds or ligands against cancer receptors, which we call as 'targets', with the help of computer simulations, thus speeding up the process of drug discovery. Docking is the most crucial aspect of virtual screening as it predicts the binding affinity of receptor-ligand complex, providing the preliminary idea about the drug-likeness of the ligand, helping in lead optimization. Thus, in-silico techniques are convenient for primary screening of ligands but the efficiency of these techniques still remains a critical problem.

Keywords: Cancer, targets, virtual screening, docking, ligands.

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