The Boston University Center for Molecular Discovery (BU-CMD) is an integrated infrastructure for the discovery of new small molecule chemical probes, therapeutic leads, and therapeutic target pathways. The operations of BU-CMD consist of synthetic chemistry, high-throughput screening and biology (HTS), medicinal chemistry, and translational investigations.


The BU-CMD builds upon the foundation originally established by the Center for Chemical Methodology and Library Development at Boston University (CMLD-BU). Funded by the National Institute of General Medical Sciences (NIGMS) from 2001-2014, the CMLD-BU focused on the production of novel chemical libraries of unprecedented complexity for biological screening, publishing new protocols and methodologies for library synthesis, and providing chemical libraries to members of the biological research community to use as research tools in collaborative efforts.

Beginning in 2020, the BU-CMD established a screening network within the National Center for Advancing Translational Sciences, which serves to connect synthetic and medicinal chemists with translational biological scientists working at different hubs of the Clinical and Translational Science Awards program, in order to foster cross-disciplinary small molecule development towards new therapeutics. For more information on this program and information on joining, please click here.


The BU-CMD hosts several resources designed to serve research communities at Boston University and beyond. These include:

  • Instrumentation and services offered to chemists by the BU-CMD Analytical Core for chemical synthesis, purification, analysis, and compound curation
  • The BU-CMD screening collection, distributed to biologists for the discovery and development of biologically active small molecules
  • The Chemical Library Consortium (CLC) collaborator network, established to probe diverse areas of biological activity, and directly connect screening biologists with the chemists who synthesized the molecules in our collection.


Other CMLD centers of excellence supported by NIGMS were also established at the: