C4X enters drug discovery AI deal with GTN
Drug discovery company C4X Discovery Holdings has entered into a partnership with GTN, a new player in the field of drug discovery artificial intelligence, initially focussing on identifying potential small molecule hits against a high-value neurodegeneration target, it announced on Thursday.
The AIM-traded firm said artificial intelligence was expected to “revolutionise” the drug discovery industry, with GTN reportedly at the forefront of the field, using deep-learning techniques and quantum physics to simulate, filter and search for molecules that were hidden from traditional technologies.
However, it explained that over-simplistic representation of molecules was a “key challenge” for the application of artificial intelligence to problems of medicinal chemistry, resulting in suboptimal property prediction and thus suboptimal results.
In order to address that ‘representation problem’, C4X - using its conformational analysis platform ‘Conformetrix’ - would provide GTN with molecular descriptors for use in its in-silico discovery platform.
By combining both technologies, the collaboration was aiming to unlock new areas of chemical space and identify novel small molecules.
The board said the discovery partnership added another high value programme to C4X's portfolio, and represented continued progress against its strategy of accessing high impact technologies through productive partnerships.
“Strategic partnerships represent a critical component of our strategy and we are delighted to be collaborating with the team at GTN on this exciting project,” said C4X Discovery’s chief scientific officer Dr Craig Fox.
“Leveraging the clear synergies that exist between our Conformetrix platform and GTN's in-silico discovery technology, we aim to solve the representation problem and enable pioneering research into unexplored chemical space against a commercially attractive neurodegeneration target. We are looking forward to seeing the results of this project.”
Noor Shaker, chief executive officer of GTN, added that the company was “excited” to be working with C4X Discovery.
“This partnership is a great milestone for GTN as we expand the capabilities of our proprietary quantum machine learning platform.”
Shaker explained that GTN would deploy its platform to discover novel, high quality chemicals and accelerate the discovery process.
“GTN's unique approach to quantum representation of molecules and advance machine learning plays very nicely with C4X's molecular descriptors.
“It is a key component of GTN's strategy to form close collaborations with biotechs and pharmaceutical companies and we hope that this is the start of a growing relationship with C4X Discovery.”