Speeding up drug research and production

By | July 26, 2015

Gene therapy is controversial, but who said we need to modify human genes? Predicting the effects of gene editing is a long-awaited holy grail to drug research: Each living cell has many receptors, and activating or blocking different receptors causes the cell to act differently (or self-destruct). Several drugs work by mimicking the shape of these receptor-binding proteins.

But how do you develop a drug that binds to a particular receptor and requires a particular form? That's where the sort of AI that this startup claims to possess comes to play: it can simulate whether a particular new drug will have the right shape or not to bind to the target receptors. The instructions to create these drugs are then transferred to drug-producing factories (such as bacteria or other genetically modified cellular organisms), which secrete the drugs that are harvested for human use. A long way from human gene modification, but an important advancement in speeding up the development of new drugs that fall into this class of production!

/via +Wayne Radinsky

This Startup Says AI Can Predict the Effects of Gene Editing
Can a Canadian startup with some big names attached set itself apart in the competitive world of bioinformatics?

One thought on “Speeding up drug research and production

  1. David Westebbe

    When I got to this sentence in the article it seemed as though it could not possibly be correct.

    "Gene editing remains a controversial practice, and the US National Institutes of Health flatly stated it will not fund research on ethical grounds."

    So I went to the NIH website for more info, and indeed, the article misstates the policy of the NIH. I stopped reading at that point.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.