Functional cellular assays are the bedrock of modern drug discovery. These utilise cellular systems that yield a measurable biochemical product or physiological response to drug stimulation. Often, these functional responses are studied by the introduction of the molecular target of choice into an inert cellular background to create a more discriminating system. There are as many techniques for delivery of the required target gene as there are techniques for studying their function. This article will consider the genetic modification of cell lines in vitro to develop cell-based assays for drug discovery and high-throughput screening.