Systems biology-embedded target validation: improving efficacy in drug discovery

Wiley Interdiscip Rev Syst Biol Med. Jan-Feb 2014;6(1):1-11. doi: 10.1002/wsbm.1253. Epub 2013 Nov 8.


The pharmaceutical industry is faced with a range of challenges with the ever-escalating costs of drug development and a drying out of drug pipelines. By harnessing advances in -omics technologies and moving away from the standard, reductionist model of drug discovery, there is significant potential to reduce costs and improve efficacy. Embedding systems biology approaches in drug discovery, which seek to investigate underlying molecular mechanisms of potential drug targets in a network context, will reduce attrition rates by earlier target validation and the introduction of novel targets into the currently stagnant market. Systems biology approaches also have the potential to assist in the design of multidrug treatments and repositioning of existing drugs, while stratifying patients to give a greater personalization of medical treatment.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Biomedical Research
  • Drug Discovery*
  • Humans
  • Mice
  • Precision Medicine
  • Systems Biology*