How Artificial Intelligence is Being Used to Discover New Uses for Drugs

At any given moment, pharmaceutical firms have a massive library of compounds and no clue what to do with them. Tucked away in extensive collections of synthetic and theoretical drug banks lie hidden gems — drugs to treat perhaps even the most devastating diseases — but identifying them is a pain: testing can take years, even decades, and often researchers aren’t even sure what they’re looking for. What they need is a way to sort through the duds — and now, it’s looking like artificial intelligence can help. Scientists from Insilico Medicine, a bioinformatics firm, have figured out how to teach A.I. to predict the therapeutic use of new drugs before they’re even tested. Publishing their work today in the journal Molecular Pharmaceutics, they discuss their A.I.’s training regimen, which…


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