The Central Drug Research Institute (CDRI), which is located in Lucknow, India, has begun using a computer program that will allow the organization to reduce the number of experiments it conducts on animals by approximately 90 percent.
The program -- Drug Discovery Assistant (DDA) -- enables medical researchers to test the suitability of selected molecules for use as drugs by checking the molecules against databases containing information about diabetes, dyslipidemia, central nervous system diseases and cardiovascular system disorders.
In addition, the software provides information about currently used, no longer employed, rejected and pending drugs.
"Now only two or three of the trials (for each drug) will be conducted on animals, compared to between 20 and 30 in the past," CDRI Director C. M. Gupta told a British Broadcasting Corporation reporter.
According to New Delhi-based Invenio Biosolutions, which developed DDA, the program not only reduces the need for animals to be used in drug development, but significantly decreases the cost and amount of time involved.