2019.05.28 Release

ExaWizards, an AI start-up, commences a joint development project with Daiichi Sankyo for data-driven drug discovery in small-molecule drugs

– Supporting the accelerated use of AI technology in drug discovery research –

ExaWizards Inc. (Minato-ku, Tokyo, Representative Director & President: Ko Ishiyama, hereafter “ExaWizards”) announces the start of a joint development project with Daiichi Sankyo Company, Limited (Chuo-ku, Tokyo, Representative Director, President & CEO: Sunao Manabe, hereafter “Daiichi Sankyo”) from May 2019, aiming to realize and accelerate data-driven drug discovery through the use of AI in drug discovery research.

Recently, the use of AI has expanded in pharmaceutical companies in Japan and abroad, and is attracting attention for accelerating R&D of new drugs and boosting productivity. On the other hand, the skilled integration of AI technology and experts in actual drug discovery is essential to realize data-driven drug discovery which focuses on a more sophisticated and efficient drug discovery process by leveraging big data in the domain of medicine and drug discovery. To be specific, it is essential not only to devise an approach which enables data analysis according to the purpose by fully demonstrating the capacity of AI, but also to make multifaceted, comprehensive evaluations and judgments of the analysis results and the utilization method, based on the special knowledge and understanding of the processes related to drug discovery.

[Overview of the Joint Development]

In this project, ExaWizards engineers with knowledge of drug discovery are working on the following activities in collaboration with Daiichi Sankyo drug discovery researchers while utilizing the internal and external data of Daiichi Sankyo, aiming to create values and outcomes in the domain of drug discovery.

  • On-site implementation of AI technology including deep learning
    By utilizing AI technology concerning drug discovery, including ExaWizards’ expertise in deep learning and know-how in original model development and other appropriate techniques in this domain, ExaWizards not only accurately reviews these methods but also assists Daiichi Sankyo to establish original know-how concerning the use of data and AI, from diverse standpoints including the scope of application and characteristics for each target class.

  • Promotion of data use integrated with domain knowledge based on evaluations and feedback on the analysis results from drug discovery researchers
    ExaWizards evaluates the results of analysis by AI in cooperation with Daiichi Sankyo drug discovery researchers. By incorporating feedback on the analysis approach with a focus on production and by taking measures to build new operation processes, ExaWizards is helping to construct the optimal operation structure based on conditions such as the characteristics of each data set while pursuing higher analysis accuracy.

ExaWizards is conducting this project in partnership with Okuno Lab., Department of Biomedical Data Intelligence, Graduate School of Medicine, Kyoto University and Drug Development Data Intelligence Platform Group, Institute of Physical and Chemical Research for technical advice.

*The technology to be utilized this time includes technology that was jointly developed by Kyoto University, the Institute of Physical and Chemical Research, and ExaWizards; however, the deliverables of the Life Intelligence Consortium (LINC) will not be used.


[Profile of ExaWizards Inc.]

Company name: ExaWizards Inc.

Address: 5F, Sumitomo Hamamatsucho Bldg., Hamamatsu-cho 1-18-16, Minato-ku, Tokyo

Founded: February 2016

Representative: Representative Director & President: Ko Ishiyama

Business: Development of AI-enabled services for industrial innovation and solving social problems

URL: https://exawizards.com/

ExaWizards Inc. Public Relation Division