Atomwise and Charles River Laboratories Form a Strategic Alliance to Provide Premier Artificial Intelligence-Powered Drug Discovery Capabilities
Atomwise, Inc. today announced a strategic alliance with Charles River Laboratories International, Inc., which will offer biotech and pharmaceutical companies an end-to-end drug discovery solution that unites AI technology with premium research services. Under the agreement, Atomwise will support hit discovery, hit-to-lead, and lead optimization efforts; while receiving technology access fees, milestone-based payments and royalties from clients.
“We’re pleased to partner with Charles River, the leading global discovery and safety CRO,” said Atomwise CEO Dr. Abraham Heifets. He added, “Biopharmaceutical companies around the world trust Charles River with moving their discoveries from an idea into the clinic, and Charles River trusts us to enhance that process with our innovative AI technology. Through this collaboration, we will bring our technology and experience in drug discovery to more biotech and pharma partners, furthering our mission to discover and develop new medicines for patients.”
Biotech and pharmaceutical companies will now have the ability to better identify chemically diverse hit compounds. Historically, the challenge has been finding the right drug among the trillions of possibilities that meets their needs for potency, selectivity, toxicity, efficacy, safety, and patentability. Brute force physical screening is no longer a solution, with billions of commercially available compounds and billions more that are synthesizable. Additionally, the most valuable target classes are among the least studied and require exploration beyond the reach of common libraries and assays. Atomwise can screen billions of compounds and has demonstrated success using homology-modeled proteins. With Atomwise, historically intractable targets become new therapeutic opportunities.
Under the agreement, Atomwise will make its technology available for multiple projects. The commercial terms of the agreement include a technology access fee for each project and payments for successes in hit discovery, hit-to-lead, and lead optimization. Atomwise will also receive royalties from clients on the sales of any compounds commercialized. Based on calculations using historical industry average lifetime revenues for small molecule drugs, Atomwise projects that the total potential value of the royalties to Atomwise with success in all projects could exceed US$2.4 billion.
Atomwise, Inc. invented the first deep learning AI technology for structure-based small molecule drug discovery. Created in 2012, today Atomwise performs hundreds of projects per year in partnership with some of the world’s largest pharmaceutical and agrochemical companies, as well as more than one hundred universities and hospitals in 19 countries. Atomwise has raised over $50 million from leading venture capital firms to support the development and application of its AI technology.
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