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Kyowa Hakko Kirin signs drug discovery deal with AI firm InveniAI

Published on 11/01/19 at 11:47am

Japanese pharma and biotech firm Kyowa Hakko Kirin is joining the growing trend of investing in artificial intelligence to bolster drug discovery efforts, entering a new partnership with AI and machine learning firm InveniAI.

KHK hopes to utilise InveniAI’s AlphaMeld technology to discover how its existing pipeline products can be applied to other indications.

While the exact financial details of the deal were not disclosed, it was confirmed that an upfront sum will be paid to InveniAI, as well as a number of development and commercialisation payments.

“As we seek to fulfil our business vision to bring innovative treatments to patients faster, we very much expect that InveniAI’s platform, will not only enable us to identify alternate therapeutic value for our portfolio at an unprecedented speed, but also capitalize on our existing investment by reducing the time to market, clinical cost of development and enhancing the probability of clinical success,” commented Dr Mitsuo Satoh, KHK’s Executive Officer, Vice President, Head, R&D Division.

Dr Krishnan Nandabalan, CEO and President of InveniAI, also remarked on the deal: “We are extremely pleased to initiate this collaboration to build on Kyowa Hakko Kirin’s clinically rich pipeline. AlphaMeld has industrialised the process of drug re-innovation by enabling the identification of complex associations between drugs/mechanisms and disease indications. The platform is patient-validated where multiple drug concepts have progressed through to human proof of clinical development.”

The company follows in the steps of a number of other industry players to sign similar AI drug discovery deals, including Novo Nordisk and UK-based e-Therapeutics, and Pfizer and CytoReason.

Matt Fellows

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