Drug Design and Development Lab

The BioPharm Lab Complex includes three well integrated laboratories and a supporting analytical center: — Laboratory for extraction of natural products and synthesis of bioactive compounds; — “In vitro” laboratory for evaluation of biological activity and toxicity; — Pharmaceutical development and characterization and “In Silico“ design. The lab complex is designed to perform problem-driven and industryoriented R&D directed to efficient, value-added and environmentally-friendly utilization of the national bio-resources and valorization of industry byproducts and bio-wastes to obtain products with high added value.

Activities

  • Full characterization of raw materials, intermediate and final products, as well as long term and accelerated stability
  • Development of pharmaceutical and nutraceutical formulations
  • External quality control for pharma companies
  • Complete physicochemical characterization of new chemical entities (required for every drug)
  • Ligand-based drug design. Quantitative structure/bioactivity relationships (QSAR) and 3D QSAR; Prediction of physicochemical properties
  • Quantitative chemical structure/property relationships (QSPR)
  • Prediction of pharmacokinetic behavior. Quantitative chemical structure/pharmacokinetics relationships (QSPhR)

Services

  • Development of pharmaceutical and nutraceutical forms.
  • Biopharmaceutical characterization of pharmaceutical and nutraceutical forms:

– determination of disintegration, dustiness and mechanical strength of tablets;

– determination of bulk density, residual humidity and particle size of powders and granules;

– determination of dissolution kinetics of solid dosage forms;

– determination of disintegration of suppositories.

  • Determination of affinity constants by the method of isothermal titration calorimetry.
  • In vitro determination of permeability through intestinal mucosa, blood-brain barrier and skin by PAMPA method.
  • Experimental determination of water solubility, lipid solubility and ionization constants.

Projects

  • Development and biopharmaceutical characterization of pharmaceutical and nutraceutical forms. Funding: Bulgarian and foreign pharmaceutical companies. PI: Assoc. Prof. Christo Tzachev, Current.
  • IT-based design of novel drugs to treat Alzheimer’s disease. Funding: Center of Excellence for Informatics and ICT. PI: Prof. Irini Doychinova, 2018 – 2023.
  • New inhibitors of acetylcholinesterase to treat Alzheimer’s disease. Funding: Bulgarian Science Fund. PI: Prof. Irini Doychinova, 2017 – 2020.

Completed projects:

  • Innovative food supplements from Bulgarian plants and microorganisms. Stage I. Testing of scientific hypotheses. Funding: R&D Consortium, Sofia Techpark. PI: Assoc. Prof. Christo Tzachev, 2018
  • In vitro and in vivo studies of a newly synthesized galanthamine derivative with potent anticholinesterase activity. Funding: Medical Research Council, MU-Sofia. PI: Prof. Irini Doychinova, 2017
  • Development and biopharmaceutical characterization of pharmaceutical and nutraceutical forms. Funding: Bulgarian pharmaceutical companies. PI: Assoc. Prof. Christo Tzachev, 2016 – 2018

Equipment

  • Tableting: Erweka model EP-1 single- punch tablet press
  • Granulation and film wrapping: Erweka model AR 403
  • Drying, pelleting and coating: Mini-Glatt / GLATT 14528
  • Disintegration test: ELECTROLAB Model ED-2 SAPO
  • Disolution test: Erweka Model DT 826
  • Fritability Test: ELECTROLAB Model EF-2W
  • Test of tablet mechanical strength: ELECTROLAB Model ESB-2PRL
  • Bulk density test for granules and powders ELECTROLAB model ЕTD-1020
  • Residual moisture test: Precisa Gravimetrics model XM60 measurement device
  • Digital Sieve Analyzer for Granules and Powders Octagon 200 Endecotts
  • Suppository disintegration test: LECTROLAB model ESDT-3
  • UV/VIS Spectrophotometer Dynamic Halo DB-20S Dynamica
  • Vertical ultrasonic homogenizer Bandelin model SONOPULS HD3100
  • Encapuslator B-395 Pro
  • Climate Stability Chamber KBF P 240
  • Isothermal titration calorimeter nanoITC TA Instruments
  • Equipment for experimental determination of water solubility, ionization constant, partition and distribution coefficients, PION Inc.
  • PAMPA (Parallel Artificial Membrane Permeability Assay), PION Inc.

News

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Irini Doychinova, DSc.
Scientific fields: drug design, bioinformatics, computational chemistry and biology;

Management

Lecturer in Physical Pharmacy and Pharmacokinetics at the Faculty of Pharmacy of the Medical University of Sofia.

Co-author of over 120 scientific publications with over 3000 citations and 4 textbooks for students in Pharmacy.

She holds the Golden Panacea Prize of the Medical University of Sofia and the Pythagoras Prize in Medical Sciences of the Ministry of Education and Science.

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