Future of Fragments Symposium

Nov 28. till Nov 29.

Future of Fragments Symposium

Symposium to explore the opportunities that must be pursued if routine fragment screening is to turn into routine lead discovery.

28/11/20162016-11-28 - 29/11/20162016-11-29
Diamond Light Source, Oxfordshire, UK

Event Overview

Crystal-based fragment screening of novel protein targets linked to disease has truly come of age: Diamond's XChem facility has been operating a regular user program since 2015, with other synchrotrons soon to follow suit. A progression of user projects have confirmed the power of this approach to discover both diverse chemotypes and unexpected mechanisms of action, especially allosteric binders.

At the same time, the continued success in unearthing a rich array of fragment hits has now decisively shifted the bottleneck onto the question of how to translate hits into high potency leads. This challenge has highlighted the need for efficient and scalable methodologies in the areas of library design, label-free assays, computational compound design and the synthesis of complex lead molecules.

This symposium aims to highlight the opportunities that must be explored if routine fragment screening is to turn into routine lead discovery. The event will bring together speakers from diverse disciplines to help define the methodology, focus and goals for fragment screening in the coming years.




Monday 28th November


Opportunity for Tour of Diamond Synchrotron and the XChem facility





Welcome and Introduction


Session 1 - Screening Methodologies


 Combining Biophysical Methods to Improve the Robustness of FBLD                                                           Ben Davis (Vernalis)

Weak Affinity Chromatography (WAC) as a New Approach for Fragment – Based Drug  Discovery        Minh-Dao Duong-Thi (Nanyang Tech Uni)

The XChem Platform at Diamond                                                                                                                      Patrick Collins (Diamond Light Source)

Scalable Approaches to Fragment Screening of Full-Functionally GPCRS                                                      Iva Navratlova (Dundee University)




Session 2 - Computational Methods


 Augmented Design using Reaction Vectors                                                                                                        Mike Bodkin (Evotec)

 Automated Design                                                                                                                                               Gisbert Schneider (ETH Zurich)

Opportunity Knocks: Organic Chemistry for FBDD                                                                                            David Rees (Astex)

Representing Fragment 3D-Pharmacophore Space for Exhaustive Screening                                            Alex Metz (Marburg)





 Fragments, Hotspots and Target Identification: Decreasing Complexity in Drug Design                              Tom Blundell (Cambridge)


Drinks & Dinner


Tuesday 29th November


Session 3 - New Synthetic Methods for Fragment Libraries and Follow-up


 Unified Approaches for the Synthesis and Elaboration of Distinctive Fragments                                      Adam Nelson (Leeds)

Catalytic Approaches to Simplifying Synthesis                                                                                                Darren Dixon (Oxford University)

New Synthetic Methods for Natural Product-Inspired Drug Discovery Strategies                                     Adrian Gill (REVOLUTION Medicines)




Session 4 - Automated Chemistry


 Rapid Chemical Space Exploration in Batch and Flow                                                                                       Neal Sach (Pfizer)

3D Reagent Libraries and the Automated Synthesis Lab                                                                                David Evans (Lilly)

Nanomole Scale High Throughput Chemistry: Platform Development and Applications to Library Synthesis    Alexander Santanilla (GSK)


Close of Symposium



Town Hall Discussion - Future Actions and Initiatives - Open to all interested



Opportunity for Tour of Diamond Synchrotron and the XChem facility


Meeting Organisers 

Prof Frank von Delft - Diamond Light Source and University of Oxford (SGC)

Prof Paul Brennan - University of Oxford (TDI and SGC)

In Partnership with: 



Sponsored by: 





Confirmed Speakers


Tom Blundell  University of Cambridge, UK
Mike Bodkin  Evotec
Patrick Collins  Diamond Light Source, UK
Ben Davis  Veranalis
Darren Dixon Oxford University, UK
Minh-Dao Duong-Thi  Nanyang Tech University, Singapore
David Evans Lilly
Adrian Gill REVOLUTION Medicines
Alex Metz University of Marburg, Germany
Iva Navratilova  University of Dundee, UK
Adam Nelson  University of Leeds, UK
David Rees  Astex Pharmaceuticals
Alexander Santanilla GSK
Gisbert Schneider ETH Zurich, Switzerland



Symposium Fees


Standard £130.00
Conference Dinner £30.00

The fee includes all refreshment breaks, lunch on both days, access to all seminars and a workshop booklet.

The dinner will be held in the RAL restaurant on the evening of the 28th November 2016 with welcome drinks served at 19:00. This will be followed by a 3-course meal in the restaurant.

Registration will is now closed, for all enquiries please email events@diamond.ac.uk

Sponsorship & Exhibition Opportunities

There are a number of exhibition and partnership opportunities available.

 Exhibition and Sponsorship Overview

 Please contact our Event Manager Emma Clarke for further details - +44 1235 778384 or events@diamond.ac.uk.


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