Two things attracted me to the Project Violet team. First, the potential these optides have in treating rare diseases is really unique. [Optides are drug candidates developed from the scaffolds of naturally occurring molecules with a unique balance of medicinal properties.]
Secondly, Jim [Dr. Jim Olson, who leads Project Violet], has a vision for translational medicine that’s really unique in an academic setting. Project Violet uses an inverse pharmacology approach, in which we identify and screen optides for drug-like properties and determine where they go in the body before even knowing if they are efficacious for treating particular diseases. By eliminating optides that don’t get to the target of interest, you really get to focus on those that could work, rather than wasting time with those that may never become a clinically useful drug.
Photo: The Project Violet team at Fred Hutch. Drew is in the long-sleeved white shirt at the right.