UK public-private partnership to use AI to cut drug failure rate

By Berry Craig IV
P3 Kentucky Staff Writer

A UK R&D project has secured a government grant to help its artificial intelligence (AI)-based drug discovery project.

Government-backed agency Innovate UK is backing the  £1 million project, which is a collaboration between two small tech businesses and the Medicines Discovery Catapult, a government-run initiative.

The project will see Optibrium, which creates software to improve the efficiency and productivity of drug discovery, and Intellegens, a spin out from the University of Cambridge which is focused on the specific form of AI called ‘deep learning’, work with northwest based Medicines Discovery Catapult over the next two years.

High failure rates mean that 9 out of 10 potential drugs fail somewhere between phase 1 trials and regulatory approval, greatly adding to the costs of creating new medicines.

The aim of the project is to harness the power of AI to learn from complex data and guide scientists in the design and testing of potential new drugs and cut failure rates.

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