High Throughput Drug Discovery Screening
A large international drug company needed a high-throughput drug discovery system that could accommodate a multitude of simultaneous processes. It was required to handle microtiter plates with heavy stainless steel lids. Typical robots working in drug discovery were laboratory type robots on long linear tracks. These robots had light payloads, were less than rugged, and slow.
To facilitate servicing the 18 peripherals in this system, a work sharing scheme using three industrial robots with high-end controllers was developed. Robot #1 was responsible for compound retrieval from libraries and hit-picking. Robot #2 handled storage and retrieval from incubation, protein dispense, plate washing, and compound transfer. Robot #3 was responsible for crystal growth monitoring.
outcomes and benefits
• 13 different asynchronous processes
• Process and plate tracking
• Plate handoff
• Inventory Discovery Mode for randomly loaded plates
• Lid removal and storage
• Storage for 417,000 compounds (386 well plates)
• Incubation for 51,840 assays (96 well plates)
• Cycle rate of 200,000 assays per day
Three Robots Cooperate to Monitor Test Plates for New Discoveries