The Methods for Bioanalysis and Drug Metabolism course is an interactive course focussing on the core principles of bioanalytical methods and the application to both drug bioanalysis and metabolite identification. The course includes both fundamental concepts and more in-depth bioanalytical application to support drug discovery and development, with a strong focus on small molecules but also with an introduction to these principles for large molecules.
The course starts by examining how the structure of a drug molecule influences its physicochemical properties and how these properties can be used to develop good extraction, separation and detection strategies. This provides a platform to learn in more detail the fundamental aspects of mass spectrometry, with a focus on modern techniques, together with HPLC theory and practice, with associated sample treatment and extraction procedures. Basic principles of chromatographic process with some practical tips and help with common problems, are also presented; including how to get the best from your HPLC system - focusing on resolution, efficiency and performance. Real world application is then explored in quantitative mass spectrometry, with the challenges of ion suppression a core topic. Optimisation of HPLC methods for LC/MS/MS, the effect of mobile phase on ionisation, and automated MS method development are also examined. This is integrated into strategies for method development, including initial considerations and experiments, chromatographic options, optimisation, validation and application of the final method. Quantitative bioanalysis is complemented with a series of lectures on qualitative methods, to support metabolite identification with detailed discussions on the use of MS/MS for structural elucidation (concepts, instrumentation and experimentation), accurate mass measurements, on-line radiochemical detection and integration with NMR spectroscopy. This section of the course also describes sample selection criteria and experiment types (in vivo, in vitro, in situ) for successful metabolite identification.
Several lectures are now devoted to the analysis of larger biopharmaceutical molecules, as a prelude to the DMDG “Large Molecule” training course. Introduction to this topic includes peptides, oligonucleotides and large intact proteins, comparing both LC/MS and ligand binding approaches.
Course content includes:
Consistent with the DMDG core principles, the interactions and networking between delegates and with tutors is encouraged at all times including opportunities to connect at coffee breaks and at dinner each evening.
Note that in 2021 due to the COVID-19 pandemic, a reduced course was using our online platform over 5 half days with non-core content available as online supplementary materials.