Vancouver biotech Absci Corp. (Nasdaq: ABSI) is getting on the generative AI train. PBJ reporter Elizabeth Hayes talked with Absci CEO Sean McClain about how the company is using this kind of AI technology to drastically reduce the time it takes to get a novel drug into the clinic.
Generative AI is artificial intelligence that can create something new and doesn’t just analyze existing data. Over the last year the technology has made a splash with text to image tools like DALL-E-2 or Lensa or the recent release of text generator ChatGPT.
“It’s the same type of principle or idea applied to drug discovery, in our case, going from (disease) target to drug all at the click of a button,” McClain said. “What this is enabling is going from a paradigm of drug discovery where you’re searching for a needle in a haystack to where we’re creating the needle, the drug candidate, and doing this in zero shot.”
Zero-shot is the type of machine learning that Absci is using for this generative AI.
Here’s how Liz puts it: In other words, the model hasn’t seen the target or anything similar, and yet it can generate a drug candidate from scratch that can bind to the target. Keep reading.