Traditional drug discovery techniques are all about brute force--and a little bit of luck. Basically, large-scale, high-throughput screening is used to cover a search space. The process is a little like conducting antisubmarine warfare without the benefit of sonar. Unsurprisingly, very few of the depth charges (drug candidates) hit their targets and achieve the desired results (successful clinical trials). The seas are simply too vast.
Despite tremendous technological advances in drug discovery and medicinal chemistry, the failure rate of new molecular entities remains extremely high, and drug development costly and slow. Dompé, a global biopharmaceutical company with a 130-year legacy of medical innovation, is here to solve the problem. Leveraging strong drug development capabilities and more than 20 years of experience, Dompé has developed the most advanced intelligent supercomputing platform for drug testing, and the largest enumerated chemical library in the world for preclinical and candidate identification, enabling faster, more efficient and inexpensive drug discovery. "Our virtual screening platform, Exscalate, leverages high-performance computing, big data and artificial intelligence (AI) to perform in silico drug testing and design," explained Andrea R. Beccari, head of discovery platform senior director. "The platform not only has unprecedented speed, quality and scalability, but is also open to the scientific community to drive innovation."
Naheed Kurji is the President and CEO of Cyclica, a Toronto-based biotechnology company that leverages artificial intelligence and computational biophysics to reshape the drug discovery process. Cyclica leverages artificial intelligence and computational biophysics to reshape the drug discovery process. Can you discuss in what way AI is used in this process? Technology has played a critical role in drug discovery dating back to the '80s. However, the drug discovery and development process is still very inefficient, time consuming and expensive, costing more than 2 billion dollars over 12 years.