The biotechnology company Biogen is teaming up with Steven Finkbeiner’s laboratory at the Gladstone Institutes in San Francisco to evaluate promising ALS targets identified through genetic screens in Drosophila ALS models and conduct further validation in mammalian neurons. The studies will leverage the “Brain Bot,” a robotic microscope invented in the Finkbeiner laboratory that enables longitudinal tracking of individual, cultured cells. Through the collaboration, scientists will develop a high-throughput, streamlined system to screen potential therapies that prevent neurotoxicity and attenuate degeneration in mammalian cells, ultimately aiming to accelerate identification of promising ALS therapies. The collaboration is planned to start early 2016.
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