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Cellular and Computational ADME Drug Discovery Tools

Cellular and computational models are developed for improved prediction of clinical ADME properties. We are using and further developing the following epithelial cell models: Caco-2, MDCK, MDCK cell lines with transfected human transporter genes, blood-retinal barrier models, corneal and epidermal models. Furthermore, we have generated numerous Sf9 cells that stably express various human ABS efflux transporters. These cell models can be used for drug permeability and transporter interaction studies. Computational modeling activities can be divided into two categories: structure-based models and pharmacokinetic models. Structure-based models include QSAR for oral drug absorption. QSAR models for efflux transport and volume of drug distribution are being developed and tested continuously. Both in vitro and in silico data are integrated into pharmacokinetic simulation models that can be used to estimate the importance of different factors in the physiological setting.

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Arto Urtti received his Ph.D. in Pharmacy in 1986 (University of Kuopio, Finland). Professor Urtti has led the CDR at the University of Helsinki since 2005. Professor Urtti has authored more than 220 peer-reviewed articles and 20 patents and patent applications. Arto Urtti has received numerous scientific awards including: Innovation Award, American Association of Pharmaceutical Scientists Fellowship, Honorary Membership of the Finnish Pharmacists’ Association, the Albert Wuokko Prize, and the Millennium Distinction Award. He has served as editor-in-chief of the European Journal of Pharmaceutical Sciences and as editorial board member for many other international journals. Professor Urtti’s main research fields include drug delivery (controlled release, computational and cell-based methods for ADME research) and nanotechnology (biomaterial structures for drug and gene targeting and for 3-d cell cultures).

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