The company has also partnered with biopharmaceutical titans such as Fosun Pharma and Taisho Pharmaceutical to develop new drugs for certain diseases.
Hong Kong-based AI drug discovery startup Insilico Medicine said on Friday it dosed 80 healthy volunteers in a Phase I clinical trial to assess the safety of a drug candidate. generated by the company’s AI-powered drug discovery platform to cure idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis (IPF), a rare lung disease, according to a company press release.
The ISM001-055 drug candidate is a small molecule inhibitor against a novel target discovered by Insilico’s in-house developed target identification engine, PandaOmics, and designed by the company’s other AI system, Chemistry42.
In fact, prior to this clinical trial, it only took Insilico 18 months with a budget of $2.6 million to complete target discovery and preclinical candidate nomination. By comparison, it normally takes years for pharmaceutical companies, with a much larger budget, to complete both of these processes.
“Modern deep learning technologies allow us to identify targets using longitudinal biological data from healthy subjects and make inferences in a variety of diseases. This was the guiding principle of our anti-fibrotic program, starting with identifying targets that may play a role in both aging and disease,” said Alex Zhavoronkov, founder and CEO of Insilico, which counts Sinovation Ventures, Qiming Venture Partners and Warburg Pincus among its partners. investors.
“We are committed to leveraging AI-based drug discovery to rapidly advance the development of innovative therapies for unmet medical needs, particularly in the areas of fibrosis, oncology, immunology and neurology, and the initiation of this Phase I study demonstrates the power of our AI platform to achieve this,” said Feng Ren, Chief Scientific Officer of Insilico Medicine.
“The best way to validate the performance of an AI system is to conduct comprehensive tests with new targets and new molecules. Human safety testing is critical,” said Michael Levitt, 2013 Nobel Laureate in Chemistry and member of Insilico Medicine’s Scientific Advisory Board.
Insilico has also partnered with companies such as Fosun Pharma and Taisho Pharmaceutical to develop new drugs.
In January, Frost & Sullivan awarded Insilico the 2022 Entrepreneurial Company of the Year award, based on its recent analysis of the global AI-based drug discovery industry.