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June 12, 2017

Numerate to Use AI Platform in Developing Drugs for Takeda

  • Computational drug design company Numerate said today it will use its artificial intelligence (AI) platform to identify and deliver multiple clinical candidates for Takeda Pharmaceutical Company, through a collaboration whose value was not disclosed.

    Takeda has agreed to pay milestone payments and royalties to Numerate under the companies’ “multiyear” agreement, Numerate said.

    Numerate agreed to lead the companies’ discovery programs, which are aimed at identifying clinical candidates in Takeda’s core therapeutic areas of oncology, gastroenterology, and central nervous system disorders.

    “We expect to produce multiple clinical candidates, while also continuing to refine, validate, and expand our proprietary AI-driven platform as we work across a broad range of target types and drug design challenges,” Numerate president and CEO Guido Lanza said in a statement.

    By applying proprietary artificial intelligence algorithms, Numerate says, its drug design platform combines advances in computer science and statistics with traditional medicinal chemistry approaches to overcome major challenges in small-molecule drug discovery and significantly accelerate candidate selection and optimization.

    Through the platform, as well as its partnerships, privately held Numerate aims to address major unmet medical needs by developing a pipeline focused on producing first-in-class therapeutic candidates against emerging targets in cardiovascular, metabolic, and neurodegenerative disease.

    In neurodegenerative disease, Numerate is pursuing potential treatments for Alzheimer’s disease that complement, or are distinct from, traditional β-amyloid-directed programs. The company’s cardiovascular areas of focus include heart failure, fatal arrhythmias, and ischemia/reperfusion injury.

    Another area of therapeutic focus for Numerate is immuno-oncology, where the company says it is pursuing candidates that enhance antitumor natural killer cell responses and relieve the immunosuppressive tumor microenvironment.

    In the collaboration with Takeda, Numerate plans to apply its AI-driven platform from hit finding and expansion through lead design/optimization and absorption, distribution, metabolism, and excretion (ADME)/toxicity modeling.

    “By having Numerate select projects that align with Takeda’s strategy, we expect the partnership to yield multiple assets that Takeda can develop into truly transformative medicines for patients,” added David Weitz, head of Takeda California and Global Research Externalization.

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