Readers Choice Award for Ciulli lab

Published on 10 March 2022

A research publication by Tasuku Ishida and Alessio Ciulli has been named one of the 2021 SLAS Readers Choice Award winners.

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The annual awards from the Society for Laboratory Automation and Screening (SLAS) honour articles and authors from 2021 published editions of SLAS Discovery and SLAS Technology. 

Professor Alessio Ciulli said in response to the award, "Tasuku and I are humbled by and so appreciate the generous award. We were aware that our article had been quite popular, because it has been the topmost-read article in the journal since its publication. The article has also been highly cited already (>30).  Nonetheless, the news still came as a pleasant surprise to both of us. It recognizes our high-quality contribution, and it underscores the unique value of our member-driven community.” 

The article, titled “E3 Ligase Ligands for PROTACs: How They Were Found and How to Discover New Ones”, was published in SLAS Discovery

The paper, which was first published online on 3 November 2020, reviews the field of small molecules targeting E3 ligases, a class of enzymes that mark proteins for degradation. A particular focus of the article is on the use of E3 ligase ligands as part of an exciting new class of drugs called protein degraders, or PROTACs, that hijack E3 ligases to destroy disease-causing proteins. This is an area of intense current research, as a first wave of PROTAC drugs are now undergoing clinical trials in cancer patients.  

The Ciulli Lab has made important contribution to the field; amongst their most notable discoveries are the design of small molecules targeting the E3 ligase von Hippel-Lindau, and their incorporation into PROTACs that are widely used across the globe today. The review is timely and significant because it not only covers the current status of E3 ligase molecules used in PROTACs, and how they were discovered, but also offers an outlook on different approaches that are being pursued to find new molecules for new E3 ligases. This is an important goal to expand the scope and potential of targeted protein degraders. 

The authors will receive a framed certificate as a small token of appreciation from the journal publisher. 

About SLAS 

The Society for Laboratory Automation and Screening (SLAS) is an international professional society of academic, industry and government researchers as well as developers and providers of laboratory automation technology and tools. SLAS leads the pursuit of research excellence by offering tangible resources such as its international conferences and symposia, scientific publishing, and opportunities for continuing education, grants and scholarships, professional collaboration, networking and career advancement. 

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