AI-Powered Drug Discovery

One area in which AI is gaining increasing prominence in healthcare is the development of new drugs. Its ability to analyze, learn and create simulations means that success may be possible where it wasn’t even imagined before. That explains how companies like Genesis Therapeutics can acquire $200 million in Series B funding to pursue its innovative work (https://longevity.technology/news/ai-drug-discovery-company-raises-200m-series-b/).

We don’t know exactly what diseases Genesis is aiming to treat, but we do know it’s focusing on targets that were previously considered “undruggable.” Its AI platform, known as Genesis Exploration of Molecular Space (GEMS), is physics-based and uses 3D structures to make predictions. That’s right: just 3D structures. It doesn’t need anything else.

More specifically, it evaluates the 3D structures of protein-ligand complexes and how they interact. It then represents these interactions as spatial graphs. The binding of molecules in a protein-ligand complex can take many different forms and underpins many important cellular processes.

GEMS can even learn 3D binding dynamics through its molecular simulation ability. Then it can create its own novel molecules with the help of its molecular generation engine. Every drug program can be examined through its own distinct area of chemical space. It’s the complex chemistry that often makes the so-called “undruggable” difficult, even when the biological evidence is there to support it.

Genesis may be leading the way when it comes to AI and biomedicine, but the research still has a long way to go. The exciting small molecule drug candidates in development still need to undergo clinical trials before they can get anywhere near the public. That’s why securing strong partnerships with investors and big names in the biomedicine world is so important.

The latest round of funding took the Genesis total up to $280 million, with much of it coming from an unnamed American-based backer with an interest in life sciences. The second big investor came from (a16z) Bio + Health, but money was also promised by Fidelity Management & Research Company, BlackRock and NVentures, the venture capital branch of NVIDIA. Then there are separate agreements with Eli Lilly and Genentech that could further expand Genesis’ reach.

With so many individuals and companies showing confidence in Genesis and its GEMS platform, the potential of these AI-developed drugs seems stronger than ever. Hopefully, they will be able to reach patients who currently have no other recourse.

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