Janssen partners with nference for AI-based drug development

nference, a leader in knowledge synthesis software solutions for the life sciences industry, today announced a multi-year alliance with Janssen Research & Development, LLC that will leverage the nference artificial intelligence (AI) platform to create a unified data science-powered connective fabric across the Janssen R&D organization.

“We are thrilled to be advancing this strategic alliance with Janssen R&D for connecting biological information to disease condition and therapeutic mechanisms. By pairing the unique data science technologies enabled by the nference platform with the renowned institutional expertise of Janssen R&D, we seek to unearth answers to complex research questions and solve urgent business needs. This is enabled via an agile data science-enabled business platform and a living software kernel that continually synthesize public as well as proprietary knowledge across therapeutic areas and global support functions,” said Venky Soundararajan, Ph.D., Founder and Chief Scientific Officer of nference.

George Church, Ph.D., who joins as Chairman of the nference Scientific Advisory Board, added, “This alliance heralds the coming together of breakthrough machine intelligence, profound biomedical insights and iterative software application development to power drug discovery, disease stratification and clinical development for one of the largest pharmaceutical companies.” Dr. Church, Professor at Harvard Medical School and Massachusetts Institute of Technology, is widely recognized as a founding father of human genome sequencing (including next-generation sequencing, nanopores) and for genome editing (CRISPR), writing, recoding and the world’s only open-access personal precision medicine databases.

The nference-Janssen R&D collaboration will span a wide array of applications. The discovery and early development applications include uncovering and prioritizing novel targets and disease subsets that will foster competitive therapeutic programs beyond the conventional disease area stronghold definitions. Some of the clinical development applications being pursued collaboratively are focused on enhancing effectiveness (e.g., stratifying patients to identify those with profound unmet medical need and who are most likely to respond to each drug candidate) as well as efficiencies (e.g., identifying the optimal sites and investigators for advancing clinical trials across leading hospitals). Additional collaborations being explored span multiple related functions (e.g., R&D compliance, regulatory affairs and medical safety).

To support this broad array of collaborations, nference has developed a holistic data science kernel that will synthesize some of the Janssen R&D proprietary databases with real-time insights gleaned by the core nference AI platform from the world’s public biomedical knowledge bases. This will include synthesis of unstructured, semi-structured and structured data sets that evolves and learns continuously as expert- and machine-curated insights are fed into the platform by nference and Janssen R&D scientists. The concomitant pursuit of diverse research collaborations and the advancement of a comprehensive software-as-a-service (SaaS) platform are expected to produce meaningful synergies that are truly distinctive in the pharmaceutical industry.

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