NOR-OPENSCREEN invited to contract negotiations with the Research Council of Norway Infrastructure program

Oslo, Bergen, Trondheim, Tromsø, June 26, 2016 -

The Norwegian Research Council today published the results of its latest call for new research infrastructures under the National Infrastructure program. In total 1.3 billion NOK is allocated to new infrastructure investments. One of the applications invited for contract negotiations is NOR-OPENSCREEN (www.openscreen.no), a distributed infrastructure for chemical biology and marine bioprospecting with the Universities of Oslo, Tromsø, Bergen and SINTEF (Trondheim) as partners. The infrastructure is a national network of four screening platforms that are already operative and where investments will ensure that the platforms stays abreast of new technology developments and can deliver cutting-edge services, will bring NOR-OPENSCREEN to the level of a national infrastructure and where NOR-OPENSCREEN will constitute the Norwegian node in the European level infrastructure (ESFRI) EU-OPENSCREEN.

 "This will be a major leap forward for Norwegian chemical biology and marine bioprospecting" says Biotechnology Centre / NCMM Director Professor Kjetil Taskén, UiO that heads the initiative in a comment. "I look forward to the negotiations, to seeing the installation of exciting new technologies and to joining forces with major European institutions in when EU-OPENSCREEN is transformed from a preparatory and transition phase ESFRI-project to a European Research Infrastructure (ERIC) probably towards the end of 2016” he continues. Professor Aurora Martinez heading the UiB node says “This grant will allow the installation of long awaited infrastructure in Norway, necessary for high quality research and for sustained innovation and discovery in medicinal chemistry.”  Jeanette Hammer Andersen, leading the UiT node, added This will give us the opportunity to invest in new technologies and further enhance Norway’s effort within marine bioprospecting and drug discovery.”

EU-OPENSCREEN (www.eu-openscreen.eu) will encompass the European Chemical Biology Library (ECBL) to be composed of proprietary compounds collected from European chemists as well as of selected commercial compounds to optimally serve the research community and including a central compound management facility, the European Chemical Biology Database (ECBD), a portal with advanced search and analysis capabilities accumulating screening data closely linked to ChEMBL and a distributed set of national high-capacity, high-throughput screening sites and specialised screening and assay development sites. EU-OPENSCREEN builds on national chemical biology networks in 16 European countries. A Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) was signed by eleven countries (Czech Republic, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Norway, Poland, Romania and Spain) and one international organisation (EMBL). The signatories participate in EU-OPENSCREEN's Transition Committee and will make a dedicated effort to take all necessary steps towards the implementation of EU-OPENSCREEN as an European research infrastructure (ERIC). Additional countries (The Netherlands, Sweden), where negotiations to sign the MoU are on-going, are invited to join the Transition Committee as observers.

Research Council of Norway announcement:

http://www.forskningsradet.no/no/Nyheter/13_milliarder_til_forskningsutstyr/1254010677263/p1174467583739?WT.ac=forside_nyhet

INFORMATION ABOUT APPLICATION (See below for Norwegian):

Title: NOR-OPENSCREEN - the Norwegian EU-OPENSCREEN node (www.openscreen.no)

 Summary (from application, public)

Chemical Biology is the systematic application of chemicals as probes for the elucidation of the molecular mechanisms of biological processes, and chemical tools have unique properties that make them especially suitable for complementing the methods of molecular biology  e.g. mutagenesis, RNA interference and transgenic models). NOR-OPENSCREEN represents the CB and marine bioprospecting expertise in Norway and is aiming to establish a distributed national network, providing local access to state-of-the-art compound libraries, high-throughput screening facilities and expertise within natural products drug discovery. The CB technology is under establishment in Norway and there is a strong need to build a national research infrastructure. This will create new opportunities both for basic science as well as for innovation and commercialization. Furthermore, NOR-OPENSCREEN constitutes the Norwegian partner in the ESFRI project EU-OPENSCREEN (European Infrastructure of Open Academic Screening Platforms for Chemical Biology) (prep. phase 2010-13, transition 2014-15) and aims to become the Norwegian node of the EU-OPENSCREEN infrastructure. EU-OPENSCREEN is building a distributed pan-European infrastructure of screening platforms open to researchers from both academia and industry. In addition to the distributed network of technologically advanced screening centers, the EU-OPENSCREEN infrastructure will provide a central compound collection and a publicly accessible central database. Furthermore, EU-OPENSCREEN will organize joint training and education programs and operate with common standards and a harmonized legal framework. NOR-OPENSCREEN as EU-OPENSCREEN partner will give Norwegian researchers the opportunity to access a much wider range of cutting-edge technologies. NOR-OPENSCREEN will, however, also contribute as a specialized screening node offering a.o. unique expertise within natural compound screening, marine bioprospecting and the use of chemical tools in microbiology.

 

Project Coordinator (host):         University of Oslo (Biotechnology Centre / NCMM)

        - in coordination with Oslo University Hospital

Partners:                                             University of Tromsø (MarBio)

                                                                SINTEF (Materials and Chemistry) - in coordination with NTNU

                                                                University of Bergen

 

Application supported by

Academic institutions and institutes: Oslo University Hospital, NTNU (Dept. Biotechnology), UiT (Faculty of Biosciences, Fisheries and Economics), UiT (NORSTRUCT), UiT (Pharmacology and Toxicology), UiB (Dept. Biomedicine), UiO (Molecular Life Sciences), UiO (Faculty of Mathematics and Natural Sciences), 

Commercial organizations: Inven2, Oslo Cancer Cluster, MarlIfe, Biotech North, Nansen Neuroscience Network, NORIN, OsloTech

International organizations: EU-OPENSCREEN (www.eu-openscreen.eu) with alliances to 21 national European partner institutes in 16 countries and one international partner, the EMBL (EBI),  and through EU-OPENSCREEN agreements partnering with European Lead Factory (ELF, IMI - Innovative Medicines Initiative), NIH (Molecular Libraries Program), Society for Lab Automation and Screening (SLAS) and other ESFRI-BMS infrastructures. Fraunhofer IME ScreeningPort and Lead Discovery Centre (LDC), Dortmund.

NOR-OPENSCREEN on Norwegian Roadmap for Research Infrastructure (page 24):

http://www.forskningsradet.no/servlet/Satellite?blobcol=urldata&blobheader=application%2Fpdf&blobheadername1=Content-Disposition%3A&blobheadervalue1=+attachment%3B+filename%3D%22Verktøyforforskning2014DelII%2C1.pdf%22&blobkey=id&blobtable=MungoBlobs&blobwhere=1274506099176&ssbinary=true

NORSK

NOR-OPENSCREEN – den norske EU-OPENSCREEN noden

Sammendrag

NOR-OPENSCREEN samler norsk ekspertise innen kjemisk biologi og marin bioprospektering og har som målsetning å etablere en distribuert, nasjonal infrastruktur av screening plattformer som skal gjøres tilgjengelig for forskere både fra akademia og fra industrien.

Kjemisk biologi og HTS er et raskt voksende tverrfaglig felt som omfatter både kjemi, farmasi, nanoteknologi, biologi og molekylærmedisin og omfatter bruk av småmolekylære substanser (SMS) for helt spesifikt å kunne aktivere eller avbryte biologiske funksjoner. Slike småmolekylære substanser er svært verdifulle for å kunne utforske funksjonen til genprodukter på molekylært og cellulært nivå i tillegg til i hele organismer. SMS har også vist seg meget verdifulle i behandling av sykdom da de fleste medikamenter vi bruker i dag, tilhører denne klassen. Teknologien kan også brukes til å identifisere nye produkter innen en rekke andre områder relevant for helse og velferd (f.eks. næringsmiddelindustrien, plantevern, veterinær medisin og kosmetikk). For å kunne identifisere SMS som retter seg mot et bestemt målmolekyl eller hemmer en bestemt biologisk prosess, brukes kjemisk biologi der store biblioteker av substanser skannes i søk som går med stor gjennomstrømningshastighet, såkalt high-throughput screening (HTS).

NOR-OPENSCREEN tar sikte på å bli den norske noden i ESFRI-prosjektet EU-OPENSCREEN, European Infrastructure of Open Screening Platforms for Chemical Biology.  Dette trans-nasjonale nettverket av screening plattformer har per i dag 21 partnere fra 14 europeiske land og har som mål å gjøre avansert teknologi og ekspertise innen kjemisk biologi tilgjengelige for forskere både innen akademia og SMEs. EU-OPENSCREEN nærmer seg slutten av en 3-årig forberedende fase der NOR-OPENSCREEN har vært med fra starten, har etablert en forretningsmodell og er klar til å etablere selve infrastrukturen som bygger på allerede eksisterende screening plattformer i Europa. Norsk deltagelse i EU-OPENSCREEN vil gi norske forskere tilgang til et mye bredere spekter av «cutting-edge» teknologier. NOR-OPENSCREEN vil på sin side tilby unik ekspertise på Europeisk nivå for eksempel innen screening av naturlige forbindelser/ekstrakter, marin bioprospektering og bruk av kjemiske verktøy innen mikrobiologi.

 

 

 

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Coordinated by University of Oslo in collaboration with SINTEF (Trondheim),the University of Tromsø (UiT), and the University of Bergen (UiB)

 

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NOR-Openscreen is the Norwegian node of the EU-Openscreen infrastructure project.

We support the discovery of biologically active substances in all areas of the Life Sciences.