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AI Accelerates Biotech Research

Is artificial intelligence a boon or a bane??  – or perhaps a bit of both??

The application and advancement of artificial intelligence is one of the most discussed topics across industry sectors these days. There is no shortage of conversation about what AI holds for our collective futures. Some praise it, while others express caution and even fear. A great many voices demand the regulation of advancements in AI.

Still, the proverbial horses continue to race out of the barn faster than industry sectors can catch up.

Screen actors and writers are, in part, striking to protect their careers and livelihoods from the encroachment of AI. Many contest that AI threatens to take over at least parts of tasks currently performed by humans. Lawmakers and industry leaders are themselves urging government oversight and regulation to curtail advancements in AI.

My own industry, the legal profession, is having all sorts of experiences — both good and bad — with the application of AI in the practice of law. Many of these are creating debates and disputes among attorneys, judiciaries and advocacy organizations.

While caution and care are certainly warranted, the “problems” often attributed to AI should not dominate the headlines. We should not go so far to the point where advancements in generative AI are considered only something to fear and curtail. There are many sectors in which the application of AI is being truly transformative and tremendously impactful across the globe.

One such industry is healthcare. Across the life sciences, AI is opening doors, accelerating innovation, and effecting positive change while improving outcomes at an incredibly encouraging rate.

How AI is Revolutionizing Pharmaceutical and Biotech Research

As a firm that works closely with inventors and innovators in life sciences and medical technology, we are admittedly “closer to the action” than the average casual observer. What we are seeing represents truly game-changing and groundbreaking advancements. These breakthroughs far outpace the rate of change health care has ever experienced.

Consider the example of OneThree Biotech based in New York.

OneThree bills its enterprise as “a team of biologists, chemists, computer scientists, forever students, thinkers, optimists, and explorers trying to solve one important question: How can we find new medicines to help patients in need?” Their mission? To revolutionize drug target discovery with biology-driven AI.

What this means in layperson’s terms is that they are leveraging the power of their own proprietary generative AI engine (ATLANTIS) to revolutionize research. Using AI and machine learning, they are able to predict how drugs in various stages of the development pipeline will target the molecules they are designed to change with greater efficacy and efficiency. By developing and deploying AI tools, they are able to conduct massive amounts of research more quickly, more reliably, and with greater accuracy. As their own language suggests:

It’s just as important to know a drug can treat brain cancer as it is to know whether that drug will cause severe side effects when it binds proteins in the liver, or if the compound can even cross the blood brain barrier to begin with. Over 95% of compounds that enter preclinical development fail before ever making it to patients, and it’s often because issues like these are overlooked in early discovery.

 Because of this, we built our platform to provide insight across multiple parts of the drug development pipeline, which not only provides greater mechanistic insights, but also helps ensure a greater success rate for drugs entering preclinical development.

 Our data mapping and ingestion pipeline links thousands of disparate, diverse data sources, and types into a single relational database. Our algorithmic models have been tailored to analyze all of these data types relevant to their predictive functionality.

 This data is derived from over 200 different sources, including: non-profits, major pharmaceutical companies, academic databases, publicly available data sources, and much more. We currently integrate over 600 different data types spanning biological, chemical, and clinical domains.

 What this group of innovators and medical professionals is achieving, documenting and gaining peer review for is nothing short of amazing. Born from the prestigious Weill Cornell Medical university, this team is effecting truly life-saving change. It would be a shame if the promise of such an application of AI were dismissed or delayed. For the lives they are saving, it would be more than a lost opportunity. It would represent a step backward in the medical field’s march toward progress.

To learn more about how AI is revolutionizing cancer research, click here for an in-depth technical review. In short, ​​AI is rapidly reshaping cancer research and personalized clinical care. Such applications range from detection and classification of cancer to molecular characterization of tumors and their “microenvironment.” They are revolutionizing drug discovery and repurposing, all in the pursuit of better predicting treatment outcomes for patients. The summary of the paper concludes that “AI has the potential to dramatically affect nearly all aspects of oncology — from enhancing diagnosis to personalizing treatment and discovering novel anticancer drugs.”

Another prime example is Talking Medicines, based in Glasgow, Scotland.

This impressive team is harnessing their own proprietary AI engine and methodology to better understand patient experiences and perceptions. They aim to forge a position of “market leaders in liberating, structuring, and evaluating emotions, opinions, and attitudes at scale through advanced data science and next-generation artificial intelligence, including large language models and Drug-GPT™ in [their] proprietary AI ecosystem.”

What they are able to do to help pharmaceutical companies understand the human perceptions and experiences with their drugs using AI would be impossible if tasked solely to human researchers. In this case, AI is being developed and deployed to mine the entire conversation happening online. In mere moments, AI can globally gather the experiences and efficacy of various pharmaceuticals as expressed in human language online and even in-person.

Data science is applied to gather, process, understand and analyze the “voice” of patients, health care providers, industry leaders, medical professionals and others. Pharmaceutical researchers and developers mine the processed data and analyze real-world and real-time discussion. Talking Medicines’ platform is then able to apply human sentiment and authentic insights into the research and development process. Using AI enables deep, rich insights at exponentially greater efficiency and reduced expense/time than is possible by humans alone.

Let’s Talk: “Prospects and Problems”

These conversations debating the peril and promise of AI will no doubt continue. The world will continue to assess both trade-offs and trade secrets for years to come. In the weeks ahead, though, we hope you will join us in conversation and exploration. We invite both inventors and legal experts to continue this critical dialogue in a way that is productive and applicable for all stakeholders.

We are helping to organize a conference and live forum on September 28th for the Licensing Executives Society’s ( New Jersey chapter. Watch your inbox for further announcements as details develop, or check back here for updates. If you are not currently a subscriber, simply enter your email address in the blue box in the upper right corner of this blog. We will be sure to keep you informed on this and other matters of interest ​​directly impacting emerging life sciences and tech startups.

The conference will endeavor to encourage lively and informative conversations. We aim to address both the potential and potential pitfalls of the application of AI in life sciences. We examine the issue both from an academic/scientific standpoint as well as that of various legal, regulatory and intellectual property protection perspectives.

​​Crowley Law LLC celebrates advances in science and technology that can lead to improved quality of life for millions of patients. With Crowley Law’s experience in biotech and AI, we are uniquely positioned to help those companies who are using AI in life sciences to protect their IP and successfully commercialize it. If you are pursuing a development in the life sciences or other technologies and are wondering how to best move forward, contact us at [email protected] or (908) 540-6901 to arrange for a discussion with one of our team members.

We’re here to help.



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