The current state-of-the-art method for screening protein drugs is phage display, which identifies candidate proteins that bind specified targets. Such binding centric drug discovery is limited by assumptions about the correct drug target, and the premise that binding equals activity.
Our approach enables activity-based discovery of protein drugs within intact signaling networks in living cells. Simply put, we find drugs that affect the targeted network underlying a disease, which requires less a priori knowledge. Using this method, we build drug discovery pipelines before disease pathways are comprehensively understood, which can take decades to achieve. We have the potential to speed up therapeutic discovery and yield promising drugs that cannot be found through binding centric screening.