Horizon has developed a deep expertise in the development and application of in vitro assays utilizing X-MAN® cell lines that align with modern day cancer drug discovery platforms and programs.
Historically, cell models utilized in a drug testing regime have only comprized the disease causing version of a gene in the absence of the matched normal. Further, the disease gene in such models is typically engineered to express levels x1,000 to x10,000 higher than that observed in patients.
In an effort to compensate for the problems inherent in this 'contrived' model system, researchers modified assay conditions in a way that took the context of the biology even further away from that observed in the real patient situation. It is now widely accepted that there is a need to identify putative drug targets, lead compounds and predictive biomarkers using in vitro assay conditions that more closely mimic the diseased state of the patient.
Horizon has developed a broad panel of assays that include specialized tumor microenvironment assays enabling analysis of parameters such as hypoxia, 3-dimensional growth, senescence, autophagy and drug resistant pathway responses. These assays deploying X-MAN® cell lines clearly demonstrate the role that endogenous mutations play in driving disease and reinforce the importance of placing these cells under tumor-relevant conditions in order to illicit the true disease phenotypes and drug responses seen in the clinic.
Horizon also has the ability to perform high throughput combination screening.