As part of its Roadmap for Medical Research, NIH announced the establishment of the Chemical Genomics Center last week. The center is the first step of an initiative to set up a national network of centers that will produce chemical tools for use in biological research and drug development. The purpose of the center is to give "academic and government researchers a chance to contribute in a much more vigorous way to the earliest stages of the drug development pipeline: the identification of useful biological targets," explained National Human Genome Research Institute Director Francis S. Collins. In support of the research network, NIH plans to establish a repository to acquire, maintain, and distribute a collection of up to 1 million chemical compounds. To that end, the center plans to screen more than 100,000 small-molecule compounds in its first year. High-throughput screening is expected to begin later this year.