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Biopharma Services

Target Identification

Accelerate biomarker discovery with industry leading metabolomics services supported by a global library of 5,400 metabolites plus bioinformatics.

target identification

Metabolomics for Target Identification

Target identification is a critical stage in drug development that plays a pivotal role in ensuring the success of therapeutic interventions. Identifying the right molecular target is the cornerstone, as it directly influences drug efficacy and safety. Robust validation processes confirm the target’s relevance to the disease, reducing the risk of investing in ineffective treatments. Precise target selection enhances the likelihood of successful clinical outcomes, minimizing side effects and optimizing therapeutic benefits. The integration of advanced technologies, such as metabolomics can enable a more comprehensive understanding of disease mechanism and pathways.

Metabolon’s leading LC-MS metabolomics technology and bioinformatics solution combines incredibly powerful small molecule bioanalysis methodologies with the world’s largest proprietary library of annotated analytes, giving you both extensive coverage to support potential target identification, and great confidence in your data.

With nearly 25 years of experience designing metabolomic studies that deliver actional insights, we’re confident that your study will be enhanced with the power of metabolomics that can support your target identification efforts.

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Related Resources

eBook_Drug Target Tools_How Metabolomics Reduces Risks in Drug Development

How Metabolomics Reduces Risks in Drug Development

eBook_Metabolomics for Pharmaceutical Applications Volume 1

Metabolomics for Pharmaceutical Applications Volume 1

Short Chain Fatty Acids Targeted Panel

Use of Metabolomics to Phenotype and Categorize Risk in Human Health Studies

Target Identification Across Biopharma Pipelines

Drug Discovery
Pre-Clinical Development
Clinical Trials
Manufacturing and Quality Control

Drug Discovery

Target identification enables discovery of key biological molecules linked to a disease phenotype. Careful experimental design will help link the relevance of these molecules to the physiology of the disease. This critical process guides researchers in selecting viable targets, laying the groundwork for subsequent drug development stages and increasing the likelihood of successful therapeutic interventions.

Pre-Clinical Development

Having a rigorous process of target identification forms the foundation for advancing potential drug candidates. Substantiating a robust scientific framework before transitioning to clinical trials enhances the chances of developing effective and safe pharmaceutical interventions.

Clinical Trials

Throughout the stages of drug development, target engagement, dose response and patient stratification are pivotal points for successfully validating a treatment. This phase rigorously examines previously identified targets, ensuring their relevance and safety. Successful clinical trials are pivotal for advancing potential drugs towards regulatory approval and eventual market availability.

Manufacturing and Quality Control

The process of scaling-up production of a therapeutic can offer many obstacles. Quality control is critical to ensuring the consistency of active ingredients. Utilizing careful target validation procedures is crucial for maintaining product quality, meeting regulatory standards, and ensuring the safety and efficacy of pharmaceuticals.

Working with Us

Through Metabolon’s end-to-end service for all our products, from study design to data reporting, we ensure the maximum value, utility, and applicability of your data to advance your research objectives.

Step One.

Study Design Consultation

Step Two.

Ship and Receive Samples

Step Three.


Step Four.

Data Insights

Step One.

Study Design Consultation

All successful studies require three main components: a clearly defined objective, strong study design elements, and adequate study power. We ensure these components are incorporated into every study—which increases the data quality and improves the chance of market success. We support projects as early as concept development, ensuring all study requirements are being considered to help you design a successful study that effectively and economically answers your research questions.

Every study begins with a one-on-one consultation to fully understand your research goals. Once we understand your goals, we can work with you to design a metabolomic study that will detect salient “cause and effect” metabolic changes with proper consideration of sample types, time points, doses, and phenotypic/disease severity.

Strong study design elements are central to uncovering biologically significant results. To minimize variation—and, therefore, noise—the following four design elements must be met: selection of an appropriate matrix, collection of adequate exposures (i.e., dose and time of collection), use of controls for every tested variable, and consistency across the study.

study design consultation
ship samples

Step Two.

Ship and Receive Samples

When you’re ready to ship your samples to Metabolon, our Client Success Team will work with you to select the best option for ensuring your samples arrive safely. We offer our complimentary Metabolon Study Success Sample Handling Kit which includes the appropriate quantity of barcoded Metabolon Standard Preferred tubes for your designated matrix. These samples can be easily labelled using our automated barcode system.

When your samples arrive, they are immediately logged into our customized laboratory information management system (LIMS). This system ensures traceability, sample quality, and quick turnaround. Samples are stored in carefully monitored, generator-backed, -80°C freezers or other sample-appropriate storage until they are ready for processing in our labs Additionally, our laboratories are ISO 9001:2015 and CLIA certified and CAP accredited.

Step Three.

Platform Technology

Samples are processed using ultra high-performance liquid chromatography/tandem accurate mass spectrometry (UHPLC/MS/MS) methods. These data are curated against our unparallel molecular library utilizing our proprietary software. Guided by SOPs, each step in the analysis process is tightly monitored and systems are operated in a rigorously controlled environment to reduce noise and standardize results.

With over 5,400 compounds in our proprietary reference library, Metabolon has the most comprehensive coverage across over 70 metabolic pathways to inform your study and enable novel discoveries. Metabolon continually makes updates to the platform to improve data quality.

platform technology
data insights

Step Four.

Deliver Data Insights

Metabolomics delivers a vast amount of data which presents significant challenges for data interpretation. At Metabolon, we are not only interested in delivering high quality data to our customers but also helping our customers uncover valuable insights from that data.

Delivering data at Metabolon is a highly collaborative process between our clients and our internal experts. We work to convert metabolomics data into actionable insights which are then discussed with you to ensure that we are achieving your study goals.

In addition to the years of expertise that our scientists provide, we also offer comprehensive data tools within our MyMetabolon Portal that allow you to explore the data on your own. Optimize your research by taking advantage of our institutional knowledge and metabolomics experts to ensure drug development success.

Related Products

Metabolon offers a variety of metabolomics services to further your discovery across the research continuum from untargeted to targeted solutions. Explore these related products below.

Untargeted Metabolomics

Global Discovery Panel

Metabolon’s Global Discovery Panel provides the industry’s broadest class coverage from a single sample.

Custom Method Development

Custom Targeted Panel

Custom Targeted Panels and Single Analyte Assays can be developed and validated in practically any matrix.

Short Chain Fatty Acids Targeted Panel

Short Chain Fatty Acids Targeted Panel

This panel focuses on specific SFCAs and their metabolic pathways and can be used to track biomarkers.

Why Metabolon?

Cited in over 3,000 publications, we help scientists and manufacturers gain greater insight into their studies through metabolomics. See how our approach can become a successful part of your workflow.

Only Metabolon has all four core metabolomics capabilities



Ability to interrogate thousands of metabolites across diverse biochemical space, revealing new insights and opportunities



Ability to integrate the data from different studies into the same dataset, in different geographies, among different patients over time



Ability to inform on proper study design, generate high‐quality data, derive biological insights, and make actionable recommendations



Ability to process hundreds of thousands of samples quickly and cost‐efficiently to service rapidly growing demand

Partner with Metabolon to access:


A library of 5,400+ known metabolites, 2,000 in human plasma, all referenced in the context of biochemical pathways

  • That’s 5x the metabolites of the closest competitor

Unparalleled depth and breadth of experience analyzing and interpreting metabolomic data to find meaningful results

  • 10,000+ projects with hundreds of clients
  • 2,000+ publications covering 500 diseases, including numerous peer-reviewed journals such as Cell, Nature and Science
  • Nearly 40 PhDs in data science, molecular biology, and biochemistry

Using our robust platform and visualization tools, our experts are uniquely able to tell you more about your molecule and develop assay panels to help you zero in on the results you need.

Contact Us

Talk with an expert

Request a quote for our services, get more information on sample types and handling procedures, request a letter of support, or submit a question about how metabolomics can advance your research.

Corporate Headquarters

617 Davis Drive, Suite 100
Morrisville, NC 27560

Mailing Address:
P.O. Box 110407
Research Triangle Park, NC 27709

+1 (919) 572-1721