Design and implementation of high throughput screening assays

Methods Mol Biol. 2002;190:1-29. doi: 10.1385/1-59259-180-9:001.


HTS is at the core of the drug-discovery process, and so it is critical to design and implement HTS assays in a comprehensive fashion involving scientists from the disciplines of biology, chemistry, engineering, and informatics. This requires careful analysis of many variables, starting with the choice of assay target and ending with the discovery of lead compounds. At every step in this process, there are decisions to be made that can greatly impact the outcome of the HTS effort, to the point of making it a success or a failure. Although specific guidelines can be established to ensure that the screening assay reaches an acceptable level of quality, many choices require pragmatism and the ability to compromise opposing forces.

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Drug Design
  • Drug Evaluation, Preclinical / methods*
  • Enzyme Inhibitors
  • Enzymes / metabolism
  • GTP-Binding Proteins / metabolism
  • Humans
  • Indicators and Reagents
  • Molecular Biology / methods
  • Receptors, Cell Surface / analysis
  • Receptors, Cell Surface / drug effects
  • Receptors, Cell Surface / metabolism
  • Spectrometry, Fluorescence
  • Substrate Specificity


  • Enzyme Inhibitors
  • Enzymes
  • Indicators and Reagents
  • Receptors, Cell Surface
  • GTP-Binding Proteins