QEDDI has capabilities to prosecute the key phases in a drug discovery program.

Hit identification

Identification of hit compounds for a specific target by various methods including high-throughput screening, focused library screening, in silico screening (ligand- or target-based structural modelling), fragment screening. Prioritisation of hits following triage around early Structure-Activity Relationships (SAR), path to novel chemical matter, synthetic tractability, absence of toxicophores or frequent-hitter flags.

Lead Generation

Development of SAR using ligand-based and/or structure-based drug design to support the hit-to-lead phase. Optimisation of activity in primary and secondary assays. Early profiling of the ADME-T properties of the lead series. Proof of concept for in vivo efficacy in a disease-relevant model.

Lead Optimisation

Iterative optimisation with the lead series to capture the desired in vivo efficacy, safety and DMPK profiles in a pre-clinical development candidate. Demonstration of efficacy in a range of model systems that are relevant to human disease. Development of biomarkers that aim to increase the probability of success in the clinic.

Each project within QEDDI will have a defined target product profile (TPP) to describe the key attributes of a differentiated therapeutic. QEDDI has the capability to perform iterative cycles of medicinal chemistry and pharmacology to identify and optimise promising compound lead series against the TPP criteria to select a preclinical candidate. Attributes for a preclinical candidate include:

  • Evidence of defined mechanism-of-action in potent and selective compounds;
  • Defined, optimised physicochemical, ADME-T and pharmaceutical properties;
  • Proof of concept in vivo efficacy at suitable doses in a translatable model;
  • Appropriate safety pharmacology and toxicological profiles;
  • Suitable DMPK for intended delivery route;
  • Intellectual property.

QEDDI'S Strengths

Medicinal Chemistry

  • Hit identification by various modalities
  • Rational drug design and synthesis of analogues
  • SAR development
  • Hit-to-Lead and Lead Optimisation
  • Focused, chemoinformatics guided library synthesis


  • Optimisation of compound potency and selectivity in biochemical and cell-based assays
  • Evidence for efficacy in disease-relevant models
  • Development of PK/PD relationships to support translation to humans
  • Development of biomarkers for evidence of target engagement in the clinic

Preclinical Candidate Selection

  • Safety pharmacology
  • Pharmacokinetic and metabolite profiling
  • Early toxicity studies
  • Early pharmaceutical development and CMC assessment
  • Human dose prediction


  • IP management 
  • Business development